Comelec asked to rule on eligibility of a newly elected Nueva Ecija lawmaker to hold office

Philip Piccio Photo ©
Philip Piccio Photo ©

A CONCERNED voter from Nueva Ecija accused the Commission on Elections of negligence following its alleged refusal to act on reports that a congressional winner in the recent election is an American citizen.

Philip Piccio, a known consumer crusader, threatens to formally file charges against the Comelec if they would still refuse to act on his complaint despite the “irrefutable evidence” he now presents that Rosanna Vergara, who won the congressional seat for the province’s third district, presented spurious papers to meet the constitutional requirements to run for office.

Vergara, wife of Cabanatuan City reelectionist Mayor Julius Cesar Vergara, ran and won against former provincial governor Aurelio Umali.

Piccio, in a press conference, presented xeroxed copies of certifications issued by the Office of the Clerk of Court and Ex-Officio Sheriff of the Manila Regional Trial Court, and the Bureau of Immigration allegedly attesting that the documents presented by Vergara, as proofs of her Filipino citizenship, are non-existent.

He said the Manila RTC Clerk of Court certifies that “this Office could not issue a certified  true copy of the document denominated as “Oath of Allegiance executed by Rosanna Garcia Vergara, alleged to have been acknowledged before said notary public (Atty. Alejandro Cinco) on Nov. 26, 2006 with Doc No. 115, Page No. 42, Book No. IV, Series of 2006 in as much as Book No. IV is not among those submitted to this Office.”

Piccio also said the BI’s certifies that “no Petition for the Issuance of an Identification Certificate in favor of Rosanna Garcia Vergara was received or processed by the Bureau.” Furthermore, the BI, according to Piccio, also said that “no record of Identification Certificate No. 06-12955 allegedly issued to Vergara exists in the Bureau’s files.”

At the same time, Piccio presented xeroxed copies of Vergara’s BI Identification Certificate No. 06-12955 (the alleged non-existent document) and a copy of her sworn Oath of Allegiance allegedly notarized by Atty. Alejandro Cinco.

Moreover, he noted Cinco’s alleged signature in Vergara’s Oath of Allegiance is different from what was signed in Cinco’s  own Oath of Office when he became a Manila notary public.

The crusader from barangay Kapitan Pepe, Cabanatuan City stressed that there are clear indications that Vergara’s notarized Oath of Office was falsified.

The Comelec earlier dismissed the citizenship issue against Vergara “for lack of authority” to resolve the matter. The Comelec’s dismissal came in the heels of a decision by the Cabanatuan City RTC  reversing a lower court’s decision stripping Vergara of her right to vote by virtue of her allegedly becoming an American citizen in 1998.

“We have manifested this discovery to the Comelec and have filed a Motion for Reconsideration. Also we have submitted these documentary evidence to the Court of Appeals which is currently reviewing the RTC decision. We are praying that justice despite the seemingly illogical decision of the Comelec would eventually prevail,” Piccio said.







Nelson Flores, J.D., MSCK
A former reporter of the Philippine Daily Inquirer, Manila Standard Today, and a regular columnist of the Metro Manila based daily tabloid newspaper Hataw; Nelson Flores is also the former Senior Associate Editor of the Houston based Fil-Am Press and former anchor of dzXL and dzRJ's weekend talk show Usaping Bayan. Mr. Flores has a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and Law degrees from the University of Santo Tomas and Adamson University and a holder of a study certificate from the Diocesan House of Studies, Iglesia Filipina Independiente (IFI). He is a Freemason and member of Reagan Lodge 1037 in Houston Heights under the jurisdiction of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Texas and a member of the Missionary Society of Christ the King (MSCK).

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