TACLOBAN CITY-Saying that An Waray partylist is “bogus” and reeked with traditional politics, militant group Bayan or Bagong Alyansang Makabayan has sought Comelec for its disqualification in the 2013 national midterm elections citing also the case of the prominent Ako Bicol party-list which was earlier met with disqualification.
“An Waray misleads the people for claiming it represents the ‘youth, fisher folks, urban poor, women, labor and farmers’ when in fact it has not even authored essential bills to uplift their sorry condition”, said Bayan secretary general in Eastern visayas Jun Berino.
In a statement, Berino added that the party list system’s main orientation has been desecrated to the level of traditional politicking, adding that, “In the same light, An Waray is, in fact, an original creation of well-connected politicians and families from Eastern Visayas.”
“Its first nominee and Congressman Montejo comes from an affluent family and owns hotels in Tacloban City while 3rd nominee Victoria Isabel Noel is Congressman Noel’s family member. Patrick Aguilos, its 5th nominee, is a Liberal party councilor-aspirant who ran but lost in the 2010 local elections.”
“An Waray has practically become a perfect example of fusing into the Party List system the very mainstream-oriented and traditional politics it seeks to provide alternative. Beyond the brand of a ‘Party List organization’, An Waray, in essence, merely indulged the people to get contented from token assistance and traditional ‘state benevolence’. Its legislation thrusts have nothing essential to do in empowering the peasants and workers,” added Berino.
An Waray secured a seat since 2004 when it garnered 2.11% of total party list votes.
However Berino said that that instead of forwarding essential legislation in Congress, An Waray indulged itself mainly in well-advertised disbursement of Priority development assistance funds or pork barrel.
Berino said that most of An Waray’s PDAF-related projects are “conditionally given to favored people to yield political support especially in its 2011 and 2012 PDAF releases to beef up the candidacy of Noel for city mayor of Tacloban.” Noel filed his certificate of candidacy last October 2, 2012.
“In 2011, over 20,000,000.00 million pesos was allocated for said city alone and most of which amount to a million peso per barangay.”
“An Waray has gone ineffective in justifying its party list status but has become more of a staunch operator of traditional politics. As such, it must be totally rejected from participating henceforth in the Party List elections,” Berino added in his statement.
In answer to the petition for disqualification filed against them, An Waray regional chairman Philip Jude Acidre said that they were deciding for the suspension of their services being questioned by Bayan and their affiliates.
“Therefore, while An Waray is facing these defamatory actions…the leadership of An Waray has decided to suspend beginning November 13 those programs…to prove that only their group can be of service to the people.”
Acidre instead announced that for those who would like to seek medical assistance and scholarships as well as help of any nature, they can contact Mr. Jun Berino, Sec. general of Bayan in the region or those people or offices behind the petition.
Also he asked for the continued understanding and support of the public in the middle of these events, assuring them that their programs will be continued at the soonest possible time.
“Ultimately, it is the Comelec that will decide on who will be disqualified or not. Our accomplishments can best speak for us,” Acidre told Manila Channel.