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G.R. No.

128054 October 16, 1997


KILOSBAYAN, INC., FERNANDO A. SANTIAGO, QUINTIN S. DOROMAL, EMILIO C. CAPULONG
JR., RAFAEL G. FERNANDO, petitioners,
vs.
COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS, SALVADOR ENRIQUEZ, FRANKLIN DRILON, CESAR SARINO,
LEONORA V. DE JESUS, TIBURCIO RELUCIO, RONALDO V. PUNO, BENITO R. CATINDIG,
MANUEL CALUPITAN III, VICENTE CARLOS, FRANCISCO CANCIO, JIMMY DURANTE, MELVYN
MENDOZA, respondents.
FACTS:
The Comelec received from petitioner Kilosbayan a letter informing the former of two serious violations
of election laws and requesting that these offenses and malpractices be investigated.
Kilosbayan did not submit evidence to prove its case. Thus, COMELEC dismiss the charges.
Petitioner Kilosbayan, however, brushed off responsibility for adducing evidence of herein
respondents' culpability, and adamantly demanded that the Comelec perform its constitutional duty of
prosecution election offenses upon any, even meager, information of alleged commission of election
offenses.
ISSUE:
WON commit any act constituting grave abuse of discretion in dismissing petitioner Kilosbayan's
complaint against herein respondents, the former having failed to prove its case against the latter
HELD:
The contention of petitioner Kilosbayan that it is the Comelec that is duty-bound to search for
evidence to prove its letter-complaint is downright erroneous. The task of the Comelec as
investigator and prosecutor, acting upon any election offense complaint, is not the physical searching
and gathering of proof in support of a complaint for an alleged commission of an election offense. A
complainant, who in effect accuses another person of having committed an act constituting an election
offense, has the burden, as it is his responsibility, to follow through his accusation and prove his
complainant. If the complainant fails to proffer the necessary evidence to show probable cause,
notwithstanding the lack of denial or any evidence in controversion, of the accusation, the complaint
must be dismissed, since any person accused of a crime is presumed innocent and does not at all
have to make a response or reaction to the charges against him.
The Comelec, in acting upon an election offense complaint in the course of preliminary investigation,
initially facilitates the confrontation process between the complainant and the respondents by requiring
the submission of and interfacing, their respective evidences. Ultimately, the Comelec passes upon
the contending parties' respective submission and proofs and weighs the fact and circumstances
established therefrom. Contrary to the asseveration of petitioner Kilosbayan, the preliminary
investigation is not an occasion for the Comelec to, as a duty, spoonfeed the complainant with
evidence needed to prove its case.
WHEREFORE, the instant petition is hereby DISMISSED.