On Thursday, June 16, the Commission on Election (Comelec) confirmed the request of the Liberal Party (LP) and its defeated presidential aspirant Mar Roxas to extend the deadline for its statement of contributions and expenditures (SOCE).
The result of Comelec’s votes was 4-3, and the four who were in favor of the extension were Rowena Guazon, Albert Lim, Al Parreño and Sheriff Abas. The remaining who vetoed the request were Comelec chair Andres Bautista, Luie Guia and head of campaign finance office Christian Robert Lim.
The Liberal Party has been granted until the end of the month to submit their financial report regarding the May elections.
In a press briefing, Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez said that while the chair was against the extension, he modified his vote to allow the late filing with “the imposition of the necessary fines and penalties.”
Jimenez also expressed the majority’s concern that if the original deadline, which was on June 8, was retained, it would defeat the purpose of the votes.
“You have to understand that it is quite a huge effect if this deadline is retained. The problem [in not extending the deadline] is it will essentially defeat the voice of the voters who voted for certain candidates but will not be allowed to assume office simply because they have no SOCEs. That is what we want to avoid,” he said.
According to the Constitution and Comelec’s resolution, winning candidates elected to public office designated by parties should not hold office until its party has filed its own SOCE.
It has been reported that LP filed their SOCE almost a week after the original deadline. However, the party’s documents did not include Roxas’ SOCE.
LP’s vice presidential bet, Leni Robredo, will be inaugurated on June 30, Thursday.