2009 is admittedly Kabataan Party-list‘s historic year of firsts and unanimous decisions from the Supreme Court.
It seated in April, through Supreme Court GR 179271, the first ever elected youth sectoral representative in Philippine Congress after the SC unanimously voted to overturn the Panganiban formula as basis for allocation of seats for party-list groups.
That all seems like a long time ago, trailed behind now by a lot of other firsts — first privilege speech, first bill, first office, and so on and so forth.
But before the year entirely expires, Kabataan Party-list comes full circle and ends 2009 with another phenomenal favorable decision from the SC.
Yesterday, the SC unanimously granted Kabataan’s Urgent Petition for Certiorari and Mandamus (With Application for Pleminary Mandatory Injunction), effectively re-opening and extending continuing registration until January 9, 2010.
The decision is immediately executory. Voter registration should have resumed TODAY and should continue daily hereon “during regular office hours, except only during the period starting 120 days befire a regular election and 90 days before a special election.”
So, what gives, Comelec?
Comelec is now spewing an array of negatives ranging from how the SC ruling is a technical pain-in-their-asses to it being the main reason why poll automation may just be doomed. Arguments that hold no merit and those which were what the SC precisely debunked by granting the petition. The fact remains that Comelec is compelled to comply, the question now is will they administer extended voter registration it to its fullest extent?
Comelec says that voter registration resumes Monday, December 21, a good one week after the ruling and a complete waste of precious time given as to how the deadline is fast-approaching. Next, Comelec announced that voter registration will be limited to specific dates (December 21, 22, 23, 28, 29), for only five days this December, to give way to the holidays. Fair enough. But then it went on to announce that they would not be accepting registration forms after January 2 because from then on towards January 9 they would be tackling “administrative matters.”
Can you, as I do, see contempt of court clearly written on this one?