• Sun. Mar 26th, 2023

    Rosal seeks impartial Comelec decision


    Sep 27, 2022

    LEGAZPI CITY: Albay Gov. Noel Rosal said he wants to get an impartial decision from the Commission on Elections en banc as he seeks to reverse the disqualification order against him by the Comelec First Division.

    The Comelec First Division has disqualified Rosal from the 2022 provincial race for violating the ban on releasing public funds by government agencies 45 days prior to Election Day.

    Rosal, who was then mayor of Legazpi City, disbursed social welfare aid to senior citizens in March 2022 and tricycle drivers in April 2022. The Election Day was on May 9, 2022.

    “This is part of political exercise. The project we have implemented is the old and continuing program of the city government given to senior citizens and tricycle drivers as pandemic assistance. We are doing this even without an election. It’s in the pipeline even before the campaign period. We cannot preempt the distribution of our assistance to identified beneficiaries as continuing pandemic aid not because it’s election time,” he said.

    Rosal’s disqualification case was filed by Joseph San Juan Armogila, who is running for councilor under the ticket of Ako Bicol party-list Rep. Alfredo Garbin, but lost in the local polls.

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    “My conscience is clear. I didn’t violate any law. As your new governor, I worked hard and pursued remarkable reform to address the pressing issues affecting the communities like the Sula Channel environmental destruction, unregulated quarry operations, and hospital upgrade to provide better services to the people, especially the poor,” Rosal said.

    Rosal filed a motion for recommendation to the Comelec en banc last week.

    “It’s not covert to you that there are politicians who used the programs of the government. They took advantage of the programs at the pinnacle of the campaign but we didn’t speak up against anybody because it benefits the public. But our assistance has been approved by the Sangguniang Panlungsod long before the election campaign, it’s just a continuing program of the city to identify beneficiaries,” he said in the local dialect.

    “The disqualification case filed against me is political in nature. I see it as a group decision considering the affiliation of the petitioner. The person who filed the case belongs to the opposition party. He was in the lineup of former Ako Bicol congressman Pido Garbin .”

    Former Ako Bicol lawmaker Alfredo “Pido” Garbin ran for the mayoral post in Legazpi City but lost to Governor Rosal’s wife Geraldine Rosal.

    The Manila Times tried to get the side of Ako Bicol party-list Rep. Elizaldy “Zaldy” Co regarding the statement of the governor implicating Ako Bicol in his case but the lawmaker did not reply.

    “This is serious, I just hope that the Comelec will really look into the case objectively. I hope our Comelec commissioners will look into this case thoroughly and that will not affect the Albayanos. I hope that the decision will not only favor Rosal but to favor the Albayanos. If there is an outside force, this will be unfair to us,” the governor said.

    “I will never forget this challenge when I retire from public office. This will make me stronger.”

    Rosal said he is hoping to get a favorable decision from the Comelec en banc.

    “I am hoping that the decision of the Comelec en banc commissioners will favor our case. We will wait for the decision,” he said.


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