Progressives slam threat to disqualify Bayan Muna and Anakpawis

MEMBERS of the Makabayan coalition trooped to the Commission on Elections to oppose moves in the Comelec to disqualify multi-sectoral parties including Bayan Muna and Anakpawis.

They also called for the the total purge of fake party list of multimillionaires and political dynasty in the party list system.

Satur Ocampo, concurrent president of Makabayan and Bayan Muna lauded the Comelec for its effort to cleanse the party list system of fake party list groups formed by multimillionaires and political dynasties. “But we take exception to the idea to disqualify “multisectoral” party even if that party has been proven to be truly representing marginalized sectors,” said Ocampo.

“The Comelec must not allow these moves and pressures from outside to distract it from its intention of responding to the disgust people over entry of the political and economic elites into the party list system.  Its action should focus on weeding out the rich and the powerful instead of those multi sectoral groups which truly belong and represent the marginalized,” the former lawmaker added.

“The law allows not only sectoral party but also political party representing two or more sectors to participate in the party list elections. The Supreme Court, in Bagong Bayani vs. Comelec, has in fact dismissed the petition to disqualify political parties including Bayan Muna  on the ground that the law allows it and such is unjust discrimination,” he said.

“In fact, Section 3 of RA 7941 or the party list law defines the party list system as “a mechanism of proportional representation in the election of representatives to the House of Representatives from national, regional and sectoral parties or organizations or coalitions thereof” which means various sectoral parties representing various sectors can coalesce into a multi sectoral coalition” Ocampo explained.

“The combination of workers, farmers and other marginalized sectors or groups in a political party or coalition to ensure success in elections and in its advocacies is consistent with the letter and intent of the party list to empower the marginalized and underrepresented sectors,” he explained.

Bayan Muna in fact has proven in its 11 years in Congress that a multi-sectoral political party can represent the marginalized sectors. Its bills projects and even its oversight function to conduct congressional investigation tackled the issues that affect the workers, peasants, women, indigenous people, even the professionals and the handicapped,” concluded Ocampo.


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