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Tan v. Comelec

Tan v. Comelec

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Published by Raymond Roque

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Published by: Raymond Roque on Oct 16, 2009
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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 Tan v. COMELECFacts:On 10 May 1992, Antonio Tan, as incumbent city Prosecutor of DavaoCity, was designated by the Commission on Elections as Vice-Chairman of the City Board of Canvassers of Davao City for the 11th May 1992synchronized national and local elections conformably with the provisions of Section 20(a) of Republic Act No. 6646 and Section 221(b) of the OmnibusElection CodeOn the basis of the votes canvassed by the Board of Canvassers, ManuelGarcia was proclaimed the winning candidate for a congressional seat torepresent the 2nd District of Davao City in the House of Representatives.Senforiano Alterado, another candidate for the position, filed a numberof cases questioning the validity of the proclamation of Manuel Garcia andaccusing the members of the City Board of Canvassers of "unlawful,erroneous, incomplete and irregular canvass." Meanwhile, the electoralprotest of Alterado was dismissed by the HRET. The criminal complaint for"Falsification of Public Documents and Violation of the Anti-Graft and CorruptPractices Act" before the Office of the Ombudsman was likewise dismissedon the ground of lack of criminal intent on the part of therein respondents.An administrative charge was instituted in the COMELEC against the CityBoard of Canvassers, including Antonio Tan, for "Misconduct, Neglect of Duty, Gross Incompetence and Acts Inimical to the Service." Tan moved to dismiss the administrative complaint against him foralleged lack of jurisdiction of the COMELEC, he being under the ExecutiveDepartment of the government and that COMELEC’s power to deputizepublic officers belonging to the executive department is for the purpose of insuring free, orderly and honest elections. It does not include andcomprehend administrative disciplinary jurisdiction over officials belonging tothe executive branch of government. That jurisdiction over deputizedexecutive officers cannot be deemed to include such powers as would allowencroachment into the domain of the executive branch under guise of administering laws relative to elections. . Motion to dismiss was denied.Hence, this petition.Issue:Whether the COMELEC gravely abused its discretion in denying themotion to dismissHeld:No. The COMELEC's authority under Section 2(6-8), Article IX, of theConstitution is virtually all-encompassing when it comes to election matters. The administrative case against Tan, taken cognizance of by, and stillpending with, the COMELEC, is in relation to the performance of his duties asan election canvasser and not as a city prosecutor. The COMELEC's mandateincludes its authority to exercise direct and immediate supervision and

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