PNoy: Next Comelec commissioners to be chosen carefully
President Benigno Aquino III on Thursday assured the public that his administration is “exercising even more due diligence” in selecting the next Comelec commissioners.
Aquino earlier announced Macabangkit Lanto and Bernandette Sardillo were his chosen bets for Comelec commissioners, but both have since turned down the position.
In separate letters to Aquino, Lanto cited the controversies surrounding him, while Sardillo pointed out a family member's ill health as reasons for declining the position.
On Thursday, Aquino defended Lanto anew, explaining that he knew the ex-ambassador to Egypt fully intended to disclose his involvement in a House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal case of poll fraud.
“In fairness to Mac Lanto, he actually was gonna inform me about the supposed case in the House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal. Somehow, nakaligtaan niyang sabihin ‘yon,” Aquino said.
In 1994, Lanto was unseated as representative of Lanao del Norte. But Aquino stood by Lanto, saying he believes a syndicate is operating within the HRET.
“After the fact, ano, when we looked into it, Secretary Leila de Lima who was part of the secretariat of the HRET at the time, she [told] me that she was recruited I think [by Justice] Isagani Cruz [of the Supreme Court] precisely because there was supposed to be a syndicate of people, parang revisors, who were manipulating the results. So the impression that we have now is that Mac Lanto was a victim of this syndicate,” Aquino said.
“‘Yung revisors raw would put in marks while they were revising to make the ballots spoiled, amongst other things,” Aquino said. — Patricia Denise Chiu/RSJ, GMA News