Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Cockfighters file accreditation with Comelec

Cockfighters file accreditation with Comelec


FEELING marginalized and underrepresented, a group of cockfighting aficionados is now seeking representation in Congress through the party-list system.

Alyansa ng Sabungero is among the more than 200 party-list organizations that filed accreditation with the Commission on Elections (Comelec) for the coming May 10, 2010 polls.

In a four-page petition, the Alyansa ng Sabungero said their purpose in seeking representation in Congress is basically to help the workers in the cockfighting ring who earns and lives on a “hand to mouth existence.”

Alyansa ng Sabungero is represented by its president Nid Anima and holding office at Camella Townhouse in Sucat Paranaque.

According to the clerk of the Comelec receiving the application, Alyansa ng Sabungero bragged that among their members is boxing icon Manny Pacquaio.

“We are not supposed to accept their accreditation because they lack documents but they are forcing it,” the clerk of the Comelec said.

Comelec chairman Jose Melo said he would definitely purge the lists of the party-list groups that would be accredited in the polls next year upon learning that cockfighting aficionados filed for accreditation.

“A group of cock fighters why are they marginalized when they hold the money?” Melo said.

Similarly, Melo vowed to screen thoroughly the applications for party lists adding that he would definitely want only marginalized and underrepresented to be accredited.

“Seventy party-lists to be accredited would be manageable but 50 would be right,” Melo said.

Asked what could be the reason why many groups wanted to join the party-list elections next year, Melo said it’s either because of the “pork barrel” and second is the “typical Filipino mentality” of instead supporting a group he or she would rather form his or her own group.

Comelec Commissioner Rene Sarmiento said with the numbers of party-list groups now nearing reaching over 200, they would really have to double time in resolving all the petitions for accreditation to beat the November 20 to 30 filing of certificate of candidacy.

“If there will be no opposition that would be the problem and we will have difficulty in resolving the petition…but by end of October hopefully we will finish this,” he said.

Aside from Alyansa ng Sabungero, other party-lists groups that filed accreditation with the Comelec are United Filipino Seafarers, Aabot, All Rainbow Party, Alab ng Lahi, Partido Lakas ng Masa, Citizen Call for Action, One Nation Empowered with Technology, Liwanag sa Bilangguan, OFWs, Alagaan Natin Ating Kalusugan, Grand Bohol, Balikatan, and the group transgenders Ang Ladlad.

As of 5 p.m. the total number of party-list applicants reached 264 with more still in line and waiting to file their accreditation. (MSN/Sunnex)

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