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Comelec has jurisdiction over Reyes case — SC

By Rey E. Requejo | Jun. 29, 2013 at 12:00am
The Supreme Court on Friday barred the House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal (HRET) from acquiring jurisdiction over the disqualification case filed against elected Marinduque Rep. Regina Reyes to the House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal (HRET) after it ruled that the Commission on Elections retains jurisdiction over the case, even after she was proclaimed as the winner in the last May 13 congressional race in the province.

In an en banc resolution, the SC defined the jurisdiction between the Comelec and HRET on election cases involving members of the House of Representatives.

The high court held that the HRET, the body tasked to resolve electoral cases against members of the House, has no jurisdiction on Reyes who has not officially started her term yet.

The SC said that “the jurisdiction of the HRET begins only after the candidate is considered a member of the House of Representatives, as stated in Section 17, Article VI of the 1987 Constitution.”

It explained that Reyes does not become a member of the House until she completes three stages specified in the law—valid proclamation, proper oath taking and official assumption of office at noon of June 30 after the polls.
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