Friday, September 21, 2018

Comelec commissioner: ‘We can manage the polls without Bautista’

COMMISSION on Elections (Comelec) Commissioner Rowena Guanzon Tuesday reiterated the call for Chairman Andres Bautista to step down from his post amid the controversies hounding his family.

“He (Bautista) is already depressed and could not report to the office straight until 5 p.m. We are not against him, but we called on him to resign because he does not do his function. We can manage the elections without him. We are here to work,” said the Negrense poll official, who was in Bacolod City Tuesday.

Guanzon along with the five other commissioners Christian Robert Lim, Arthur Lim, Luie Tito Guia, Sheriff Abas, and Al Parreño had earlier called the resignation of Bautista or to take leave of absence.

Guanzon said the flow of the paperworks in the Comelec is very slow because of the non-appearance of Bautista, and some of their suppliers in 2016 are still unpaid.

She said Bautista failed to attend two en banc meetings as well as the budget hearing, and the House of Representatives is now in the process of filing an impeachment case against him.

Bautista’s estranged wife Patricia had earlier exposed that her husband has an unexplained wealth that were not included in his statement of assets liabilities and net worth.

“The operations of Comelec is already affected because of the personal problem of Chairman Bautista,” Guanzon said, adding that Bautista is not aware that the National Printing Office had stopped the printing of ballots for the barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan elections.

“We are surprised because there’s no order yet or law to stop this October’s elections. He could no longer effectively lead the commission. Several paperworks are still pending because of his personal problem. He cannot give 100 percent of his time in Comelec,” Guanzon said.

Moreover, Guanzon all the regional director continue to focus on their preparation for the barangay and SK elections this October.

“There is no memorandum to the regional directors. They are quiet and they only focus on their work for the SK and barangay elections,” she said.