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ELECTION LAW BAR REVIEW NOTES

By ATTY. MEHOL K. SADAIN College of Law University of the Philippines CONSTITUTIONAL BACKGROUND A republican democracy requires that the People as sovereign elect their leaders. The Commission on Elections is an independent constitutional commission; enjoys fiscal autonomy; and possesses a wide latitude of powers in the conduct of elections. SUFFRAGE Suffrage is a privilege. It is granted only to qualified Filipinos who have registered as voters. Disqualification from registering and exercise of right to suffrage. Any person who has been sentenced by final judgment to suffer imprisonment of not less than one year, such penalty not having been removed by plenary pardon or amnesty; provided that [such person] shall automatically reacquire the right to vote upon expiration of 5 years from service of sentence. Any person who has been adjudged by final judgment of having committed any crime involving disloyalty to the duly constituted government, such as rebellion, sedition, violation of firearms laws or any crime against national security, unless restored to his full civil and political rights in accordance with law, provided [same as above] Insane or incompetent persons declared as such by competent authority. (Sec. 11, R.A. No. 8189) In addition Art. V, Sec. 1 of the Constitution declares that no literacy, property or other substantive requirements shall be imposed on the exercise of suffrage. FUNCTIONS OF THE COMELEC The COMELEC is an independent, constitutional body with administrative, legislative and judicial or quasi-judicial functions The COMELEC enjoys broad latitude of powers (necessary and incidental) in the exercise of its functions. ELECTION MODERNIZATION LAWS R.A. No. 8046 (June 7, 1995) Nation-wide demo of Computerized Election System and Pilot Testing in the 1996 ARMM Elections R.A. No. 8436 (December 22, 1997) Automated Election System in the May 11, 1998 National and Local Elections and Subsequent National and Local Elections R.A. No. 9369 (January 23, 2007) Amending R.A. 8436, and Batas Pambansa Blg. 881, as amended by R.A. 7166 WHAT IS THE AES? Sec. 2.1 of R.A. 9369, amending Sec. 2 of R.A. 8436 [The] Automated Election System, hereinafter referred to as AES [is] a system using appropriate technology which has been demonstrated in the voting, counting, consolidating, canvassing and transmission of election results and other electoral processes. OPEN TECHNOLOGY instead of confining the definition of counting machine to a machine that uses an optical scanning mark-sense reading device or any similar technology to count ballots. PAPER-BASED ELECTION SYSTEM A type of automated election system that uses paper ballots, records and counts votes, tabulates, consolidates / canvasses and transmits electronically the results of the vote count. [Sec. 2.7, R.A. 9369] The counting machines used in Lanao del Sur, Sulu, Basilan and Tawi Tawi in the 2008 ARMM Elections were paper-based. The Precinct Count Optical Scan machines are likewise paper-based. DIRECT RECORDING ELECTRONIC ELECTION SYSTEM A type of automated election system that uses electronic ballots, records votes by means of a ballot display provided with mechanical or electro-optical components that can be activated by the voter, processes data by

means of a computer program, records voting data and ballot images, and transmits voting results electronically. [Sec. 2.8, R.A. 9369] The voting and counting machines used in Maguindanao in the ARMM Elections were DRE machines. MINIMUM SYSTEM CAPABILITIES Sec. 7, R.A. 9369 a. Adequate security b. Accuracy in counting, tabulation, canvassing/consolidation, transmission & storage c. Error recovery d. System integrity e. Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail f. System auditability g. Election management system h. Accessibility to illiterates and disabled voters i. Vote tabulating program j. Accurate ballot counter k. Data retention provision l. Safekeeping, storing, archiving or physical or paper resource m. Utilize or generate official ballots n. System of voter verification o. Configure access control for sensitive system data and functions

Brillantes v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 163193 [June 15, 2004] SC Ruling Res. 6712 usurps, under the guise of an unofficial tabulation the sole and exclusive authority of Congress to canvass the votes for President and Vice President. Comment Tabulation is different from canvassing, which in the case of Pres and VP votes, is the act of totalling votes in the Provl COCs and proclaiming the winning Pres and VP. Comelec has not arrogated this function to itself. Sec. 231 of the OEC allows the Comelec to transmit election results to the Central Office and disseminate these to the media. Note that if SC is correct, then the transmission function in the present automation law (RA 9369) may also be considered unconstitutional if it transmits Presidential and Vice Presidential counts. Brillantes v. COMELEC, G.R. No. 163193 [June 15, 2004] SC Ruling The assailed resolution has no constitutional and statutory basis Since this Court has scrapped Phase II, the Comelec cannot implement Phase III. The AES provided in RA 8436 constitutes the entire process of voting, counting of votes and canvassing/consolidation of results of national and local elections, corresponding to Phase I, Phase II and Phase III of the AES of the Comelec. Comment What happened to all the laws empowering the Comelec to use technological innovations, and to all the jurisprudence acknowledging the Comelecs independence and wide latitude of powers to ensure election integrity? By saying what should constitute the AES, and what Phases identified by the Comelec should correspond to the AES, is not the Supreme Court now unfairly intruding into the function of the Comelec? Finally, the COURT said:

The Court is mindful of the salutary goals that the respondent COMELEC had envisioned in promulgating the assailed resolution, to wit: Facilitating transparency in the process Ensuring the integrity of the results Reducing election results manipulation Providing timely, fast and accurate information on election results Enabling the validation of its own official count and other counts Having an audit trail in its own account Doubtless, these are laudable intentions. But the rule of law requires that even the best intentions must be c arried within the parameters of the Constitution and the law.

ROQUE v. COMELEC

x x x The Court, however, will not indulge in the presumption that nothing would go wrong, that a successful automation election unmarred by fraud, violence, and like irregularities would be the order of the moment on May 10, 2010. Neither will it guarantee, as it cannot guarantee, the effectiveness of the voting machines and the integrity of the counting and consolidation software embedded in them. That task belongs at the first instance to Comelec, as part of its mandate to ensure clean and peaceful elections. This independent constitutional commission, it is true, possesses extraordinary powers and enjoys a considerable latitude in the discharge of its functions.

ITFP v. COMELEC The Court does not, as indeed it cannot guarantee the success of the automation or the integrity of the coming elections. It is not the Courts function to actively ensure that the automation is successfully implemented or that the elections are made free of fraud, violence, terrorism and other threats to the sanctity of the ballot. This duty lies primarily with the COMELEC. [Dissent of J. Tinga] [Information Technology Foundation of the Philippines, Ma. Corazon M. Akol, Miguel Uy, Eduardo H. Lopez, August C. Lagman, Rex C. Drilon, Miguel Hilado, Ley Salcedo and Manuel Alcuaz, Jr. vs. Commission on Elections; COMELEC Chairman Benjamin Abalos, Sr., COMELEC Bidding and Award Committee Chairman Eduardo D. Mejos and Members Gideon de Guzman, Jose F. Balbuena, Lamberto P. Llamas and Bartolome Cruz, Jr.; Mega Pacific eSolutions, Inc., and Mega Pacific Consortium [G.R. No. 159139, January 13, 2004 & June 15, 2005] RESIDENCE REQUIREMENT FERNANDEZ v. HRET

Neither do we see the fact that petitioner was only leasing a residence in Sta. Rosa at the time of his candidacy as a barrier for him to run in that district. Certainly, the Constitution does not require a congressional candidate to be a property owner in the district where he seeks to run but only that he resides in that district for at least a year prior to election day. To use ownership of property in the district as the determinative indicium of permanence of domicile or residence implies that only the landed can establish compliance with the residency requirement. This Court would be, in effect, imposing a property requirement to the right to hold public office, which property requirement would be unconstitutional. This case must be distinguished from Aquino v. COMELEC and Domino v. COMELEC, where the disqualified candidate was shown to be merely leasing a residence in the place where he sought to run for office. In Aquino and Domino, there appeared to be no other material reason for the candidate to lease residential property in the place where he filed his COC, except to fulfill the residency requirement under election laws.

RESIDENCE REQUIREMENT MITRA v. COMELEC Specifically, it was lost on the COMELEC majority (but not on the Dissent) that Mitra made definite, although incremental transfer moves, as shown by the undisputed business interests he has established in Aborlan in 2008; by the lease of a dwelling where he established his base; by the purchase of a lot for his permanent home; by his transfer of registration as a voter in March 2009; and by the construction of a house all viewed against the backdrop of a bachelor Representative who spent most of his working hours in Manila, who had a whole congressional district to take care of, and who was establishing at the same time his significant presence in the whole Province of Palawan. MITRA v. COMELEC COMELECs approach i.e., the application of subjective non-legal standards and the gross misappreciation of the evidence is tainted with grave abuse of discretion, as the COMELEC used wrong considerations and grossly misread the evidence in arriving at its conclusion. In using subjective standards, the COMELEC committed an act not otherwise within the contemplation of law on an evidentiary point that served as a major basis for its conclusion in the case.

We reject this suggested approach outright for the same reason we condemned the COMELECs use of subjective non-legal standards. Mitras feed mill dwelling cannot be considered in isolation and separately from the circumstances of his transfer of residence, specifically, his expressed intent to transfer to a residence outside of Puerto Princesa City to make him eligible to run for a provincial position; his preparatory moves starting in early 2008; his initial transfer through a leased dwelling; the purchase of a lot for his permanent home; and the construction of a house in this lot that, parenthetically, is adjacent to the premises he leased pending the completion of his house. These incremental moves do not offend reason at all, in the way that the COMELECs highly subjective non-legal standards do.

In both FERNANDEZ & MITRA Cases... The respondents won the elections, in the case of Fernandez, by an overwhelming majority [Doctrine of the Manifest Will of the Electorate] The respondents were NOT strangers to their constituencies; Fernandez having been Board Member (4th District) and a Vice Governor of the Province, and Mitra having been a Congressman of his District. [Doctrine of Substantial Ties to & Familiarity with Constituents] THREE-TERM LIMIT RULE ALDOVINO v. COMELEC

Strict adherence to the intent of the three-term limit rule demands that preventive suspension should not be considered an interruption that allows an elective officials stay in office beyond three terms. A preventive suspension cannot simply be a term interruption because the suspended official continues to stay in office although he is barred from exercising the functions and prerogatives of the office within the suspension period. The best indicator of the suspended officials continuity in office is the absence of a permanent replacement and the lack of the authority to appoint one since no vacancy exists.

THE ELECTORAL PROCESS Registration of Voters Pre-Election Preparation/Activities Voting Counting Canvassing Proclamation CANVASSING

Canvass Proceedings refers to the proceedings that involve the consolidation of precinct election results at the municipal, city or district level; district election results at the municipal or city level; municipal or city election results at the provincial level; and provincial election results at the national level, be it the COMELEC or Congress. It also includes the formal proclamation of the election winners at the various canvass levels. Rule 2, Sec. 1.j, Res. 8804. COMELEC Rules of Procedure on Disputes in an AES in connection with the May 10, 2010 Elections (March 22, 2010)]

CCS Machine

Consolidation Machine refers to the machine used at the canvass proceedings to consolidate precinct results, municipal and city results, provincial results, as the case may be, for purposes of getting the total votes of all candidates at a particular canvass level. Rule 2, Sec. 1.k, Resolution 8804 (3/22/2010)]

PROCLAMATION

The CCS Operator shall generate the Consolidated Canvass Report before generating and printing the COC Generate and print the Certificate of Canvass (COC) If ALL EXPECTED results have been received, generate and print the COC [letter b mentions the Consolidated COC] If not ALL EXPECTED results are received, and there is no way for the untransmitted results to be transmitted and the results therein will no longer affect the election in a particular position, the Board shall generate and print the COC BY POSITION. If there is NO WAY for the untransmitted results to be transmitted, and the said results will AFFECT the standing of the candidates in a particular position, the Board shall, through the National Support Center (NSC) ask from the Commission authority to generate and print the certificate of canvass for that particular position and to proclaim as winners the candidates whose standing are not affected by the lacking results. [Sec. 27.e, Resolution No. 8809]

LEGAL REMEDIES in ELECTIONS REGISTRATION: Inclusion/Exclusion of Voters Annulment of Book of Voters [List of Voters] FILING OF COCS: Petition to Disqualify Petition to Deny Due Course to or Cancel COC Petition to Declare as Nuisance Candidate [Quo Warranto Petition, (available after proclamation)] ELECTION PROPER: Postponement of Elections Failure of Elections Pre-Proclamation Controversies Annulment of Proclamation Election Protest

REGISTRATION: INCLUSION & EXCLUSION OF VOTERS Sec. 34. Petition for Inclusion. Any person whose application for registration has been disapproved or whose name has been stricken out from the list, may file a petition [with the MTC] to include his name in the permanent list of voters at any time, except 105 days prior to a regular election or 75 days prior to a special election Sec. 35. Petition for Exclusion. Any registered voters, representative of a pol. party or the Election Officer may file with the court a sworn petition for the exclusion of a voter from the PLV, giving the name, address and precinct number of the challenged voter at any time, except 100 days to a regular election and 65 days before a special election. [R.A. 8189, June 11, 1996] PROBLEM in the PROHIBITED PERIOD for FILING [105 & 75 days for Inclusion & 100 & 65 days for Exclusion] Sec. 30. The (Election Registration) Board shall prepare and POST a certified list of voters 90 days before a regular election and 60 days before a special election Upon payment of the fees as fixed by the Commission, the candidates and heads of registered political parties shall also be furnished copies thereof. REGISTRATION: ANNULMENT OF BOOK OF VOTERS Sec. 39. The Commission shall, upon verified petition of any voter or election officer or duly registered political party, and after notice and hearing, ANNUL any book of voters that is NOT prepared in accordance with the provisions of this Act, or was prepared through fraud, bribery, forgery, impersonation, intimidation, force or any similar irregularity, or which contains data that are statistically improbable. [No annulment within 90 days before an election] [R.A. 8189] FILING OF COCs: PETITION TO DISQUALITY Rule 25: Sec. 1. Grounds: Does not possess all qualifications of a candidate, or Committed an act declared by law to be a ground for DQ. Sec. 2. Who may file: Any citizen of voting age, or any pol. party, organization or coalition may file with the COMELEC Law Dept. Sec. 3. Period for filing: Any day after the last day for filing of COC, but not later than the date of proclamation. Sec. 4. Nature of proceeding: Summary with due notice. Sec. 5. Effect if unresolved before completion of canvass. Votes cast to be counted and canvassed, but if the evidence of guilt is strong, the proclamation shall be suspended. QUO WARRANTO PETITION [Actually a Post-Proclamation Remedy like the Election Protest] Rule 21.

Sec. 1. Petition for Quo Warranto :Any voter contesting the election of any regional, provincial, or city official on the ground of ineligibility or of disloyalty to the Republic of the Philippines may file a petition for quo warranto with the Electoral Contests Adjudication Department. Sec. 2. Period to file: May be filed within 10 days from the date of the proclamation of the respondent.

FILING OF COCs: PETITION TO DENY DUE COURSE OR TO CANCEL Rule 23.

Sec. 1. Who may file/grounds: Any citizen of voting age, or any registered pol. party, organization or coalition, on the exclusive ground that ANY MATERIAL REPRESENTATION contained therein as REQUIRED BY LAW is FALSE. Sec. 2. Period to file: Within 5 days after the last day for filing of COCs. xxx Sec. 4. Delegation of reception of evidence: To officials of the COMELEC who are members of the Bar.

FILING OF COCs: NUISANCE CANDIDATE Rule 24. Sec. 1. Grounds: COC was filed to put the election process in mockery or disrepute or to cause confusion among the voters by similarity of the names of candidates, or by other acts or circumstances clearly demonstrating that the candidate has no bona fide intention to run for office, thus preventing a faithful determination of the true will of the electorate. Sec. 2. Who may file: Any registered candidate for the same office, personally or through an authorized representative [Sec. 3]; Likewise, Commission may motu proprio, make the cancellation or denial or due course to the COC at any time before the election. ELECTION PROPER: POSTPONEMENT OF ELECTION Sec. 5, OEC. Postponement of Election. When for any serious cause such as violence, terrorism, loss or destruction of election paraphernalia or records, force majeure and other analogous causes of such nature that the holding of free, orderly, honest, peaceful and credible election should become impossible in any political subdivision, the Commission motu proprio or upon petition by any interested party, and after due notice and hearing may postpone the election therein to a date which shall be reasonably close to the date of the election not held, suspended or which resulted in a failure of election, but not later than 30 days after the cessation of the cause of such postponement or suspension of the election or failure to elect. [Also in Sec. 4, RA 7166 & Comelec Rules of Procedure, Rule 26, Sec. 1. (decided by COMELEC En Banc)] ELECTION PROPER: FAILURE OF ELECTION Sec. 6, OEC. Failure of Election - If, on account of force majeure, violence, terrorism, fraud or other analogous causes the election in any precinct has not been held on the date fixed, or had been suspended before the hour fixed by law for the closing of the voting, or after the voting and during the preparation and the transmission of the election returns or in the custody of canvass thereof, such election results in a failure to elect, and in any of such cases the failure or suspension of election would affect the result of the election, the Commission shall, on the basis of a verified petition by any interested party and after due notice and hearing, call for the holding or continuation of the election not held, suspended or which resulted in a failure to elect on date reasonably close but not later than 30 days after the cessation of the cause for such postponement or suspension of the election or failure to elect. [Sec. 4, R.A. 7166, Rule 26, Sec. 2, Comelec Rules of Procedure.] CONDITIONS FOR FAILURE OR ELECTIONS

In Mitmug v. COMELEC, 230 SCRA 54 [1994], the Supreme Court held: Before COMELEC can act on a verified petition seeking to declare a failure of election, two conditions must concur: first, no voting has taken place in the precinct/s on the date fixed by law or even if there was voting, the election nevertheless resulted in a failure to elect; and second, the votes not cast would affect the result of the election. And in the 1996 case of Loong v. COMELEC, 257 SCRA 1, the Supreme Court added that the cause of such failure of election should have been any of the following: force majeure, violence, terrorism, fraud or other analogous cases. Thus, the mere fact that the transfer of polling place was not made in accordance with law does not warrant a declaration of failure of election and annulment of the proclamation of the winning

candidate, unless the number of uncast votes will affect the result of the election. Balindong v. COMELEC, 260 SCRA 494 [1996]. THREE INSTANCES FOR ELECTION FAILURE Election in any polling place has not been held on the date fixed on account of force majeure, violence, terrorism, fraud or analogous causes; Election in any polling place had been suspended before the hour fixed by law for the closing of the voting, on account of force majeure, violence, terrorism, fraud or other analogous causes; After the voting and during the preparation and transmission of the election returns or in the custody or canvass thereof, such election results in a failure to elect on account of force majeure, violence, terrorism, fraud or other analogous cases. (Canicosa v. COMELEC, 282 SCRA 512 [1997] and Sison v. COMELEC, 304 SCRA 170, [1999])

ELECTION PROPER: PRE-PROCLAMATION CONTROVERSY

Art. XX, Sec. 241, OEC. Definition. A pre-proclamation controversy refers to any question affecting the proceedings of the Board of Canvassers which may be raised by any candidate or any registered political party or coalition of pol. parties before the Board or directly with the Commission in relation to the preparation, transmission, receipt, custody and appreciation of election returns.

EFFECT OF FILING Sec. 245, OEC xxx The Board of Canvassers shall not proclaim any candidate as winner unless authorized by the Commission after it has ruled on the objections brought to it by the losing party, and any proclamation in violation thereof shall be void ab initio, unless the contested election returns will not affect the result of the election. ISSUES THAT MAY BE RAISED DURING THE CANVASS

Sec. 24, Reso. 8809. Issues that may be raised during the consolidation/ canvass.-Issues affecting the composition or proceedings of the Boards may be initiated by filing a verified petition before the Board or directly with the Commission. If the petition is filed directly with the Board, its decision may be appealed to the Commission within three (3) days from issuance thereof. However, if commenced directly with the Commission, the verified petition shall be filed immediately when the board begins to act illegally, or at the time of the appointment of the member of the board whose capacity to sit as such is objected to. There shall be no pre-proclamation cases on issues/controversies relating to the generation, printing, transmission, receipt and custody and appreciation of ERs or the COCs.

OLD PROVISION: GROUNDS FOR PRE-PROC Sec. 243 of the OEC allows the following to be raised in a pre-proclamation controversy: (a) Illegal composition and proceedings of the BOC; (b) Election returns are incomplete, contain material discrepancies, appear to be tampered or falsified, or contain discrepancies in the same returns or in other authentic copies thereof; (c) Election returns were prepared under duress, threats, coercion or intimidation, or they are obviously manufactured or not authentic; and (d) Substitute or fraudulent returns were canvassed, the results of which affect the standing of the aggrieved candidates. WHAT IS ILLEGAL COMPOSITION & ILLEGAL PROCEEDING of the BOC? Rule 4 [Res. 8804] Section 1. Illegal Composition of the Board of Canvassers. - There is illegal composition of the BOC when, among other similar circumstances, any of the members do not possess legal qualifications and appointments. The information technology capable person required to assist the BOC by Republic Act No. 9369 shall be included as among those whose lack of qualifications may be questioned. Section 2 - Illegal Proceedings of the Board of Canvassers.- There is illegal proceedings of the BOC when the canvassing is a sham or mere ceremony, the results of which are pre-determined and manipulated as when any of the following circumstances are present: a) precipitate canvassing;

b) terrorism; c) lack of sufficient notice to the members of the BOC's; d) Improper venue. BANAT vs. COMELEC [G.R. 177508, August 7, 2009] In Pimentel III v. COMELEC, we already discussed the implications of the amendments introduced by Sections 37 and 38 to Sections 15 and 30 of RA 7166, respectively and we declared: Indeed, this Court recognizes that by virtue of the amendments introduced by Republic Act No. 9369 to Sections 15 and 30 of Republic Act No. 7166, pre-proclamation cases involving the authenticity and due execution of certificates of canvass are now allowed in elections for President, Vice-President, and Senators. The intention of Congress to treat a case falling under Section 30 of Republic Act No. 7166, as amended by Republic Act No. 9369, as a pre-proclamation case is apparent in the fourth paragraph of the said provision which adopts and applies to such a case the same procedure provided under Sections 17, 18, 19 and 20 of Republic Act No. 7166 on pre-proclamation controversies. Barangay Association for National Advancement and Transparency (BANAT) Party List,represented by Salvador B. Britanico vs. Commission on Elections, [G.R. 177508, August 7, 2009]

BANAT vs. COMELEC [G.R. 177508, August 7, 2009] x x x In sum, in [the] elections for President, Vice-President, Senators and Members of the House of Representatives, the general rule is still that pre-proclamation cases on matters relating to the preparation, transmission, receipt, custody and appreciation of election returns or certificates of canvass are still prohibited. As with other general rules, there are recognized exceptions to the prohibition, namely: (1) correction of manifest errors; (2) questions affecting the composition or proceeding of the board of canvassers; and (3) determination of the authenticity and due execution of certificates of canvass as provided in Section 30 of Republic Act No. 7166, as amended by Republic Act No. 9369. DETERMINATION of AUTHENTICITY and DUE EXECUTION of the COCs The COCs are electronically transmitted and printed documents. The electronically transmitted and digitally signed COCs are the legal basis for canvass and proclamation. Hence, in order to determine their authenticity and due execution, the provisions of the Electronic Commerce Act and the Rules on Electronic Evidence should be used. R.A. No. 8792 ELECTRONIC COMMERCE ACT Sec. 11 (a) The electronic signature shall be authenticated by proof that a letter, character, number of other symbol in electronic form representing the persons named in and attached to or logically associated with an electronic message, electronic document, or that the appropriate methodology or security procedures, when applicable, were employed or adopted by a person and executed or adopted by such person, with the intention of authenticating or approving an electronic date message or electronic document. (b) The electronic data message or electronic document shall be authenticated by proof that an appropriate security procedure, when applicable, was adopted and employed for the purpose of verifying the originator of an electronic data message or electronic document, or detecting error or alteration in the communication, content or storage (thereof) from a specific point, using algorithm or codes, identifying words or numbers, encryptions, answers back or acknowledgment procedures, or similar security devices. ELECTRONIC v. DIGITAL SIGNATURE In the E-Commerce Act definition, a scanned handwritten signature, a typed name of the sender, the letter X or even a dot or comma is actually considered an electronic signature. Strictly speaking, a digital signature is a technology specific signing method inherently offered by a technology called Public Key Cryptography. [Albert P. De La Cruz, A Digital Signature Primer, May 2001] WHAT DO WE MEAN BY DIGITALLY SIGNED? Rule 2, Sec. (f) of SC Rules on Electronic Evidence:

refers to an electronic document or electronic data message bearing a digital signature verified by the public key listed in a certificate. ELECTION PROPER: ELECTION PROTEST Rule 6, Section 2. Res. No. 8804. Election protest. A petition contesting the election or returns of an elective regional, provincial, or city official shall be filed with the Commission by any candidate who was voted for in the same office and who received the second or third highest number of votes or, in a multi-slot position, was among the next four candidates following the last ranked winner duly proclaimed, as reflected in the official results of the election contained in the Statement of Votes. The party filing the protest shall be designated as the protestant; the adverse party shall be known as the protestee. HOW INITIATED Section 3, Res. 8804. An election protest or petition for quo warranto [verified & with cert. of non-forum shopping-Sec. 5] shall be filed directly with the Commission in ten (10) legible copies plus such number of copies corresponding to the number of protestees, within a non-extendible period of ten days following the date of proclamation. Each contest shall refer exclusively to one office but contests for offices of the Sangguniang Pampook, Sangguniang Panlalawigan or Sangguniang Panglungsod may be consolidated in one case. CONTENTS Section 7. Contents of the protest or petition. An election protest or petition for quo warranto shall specifically state the following facts: a) The position involved b) That the protestant was a candidate who has duly filed a certificate of candidacy and has been voted for the same office. c) The date of proclamation; and d) The number of votes credited to the parties per proclamation. An election protest shall also state: e) The total number of precincts of the region, province or city concerned; f) The protested precincts and votes of the parties in the protested precincts per the Statement of Votes By Precinct or, if the votes of the parties are not specified, an explanation why the votes are not specified; g) A detailed specification of the acts or omissions complained of showing the electoral frauds, anomalies or irregularities in the protested precincts. SUMMARY DISMISSAL Section 9. Summary dismissal of election contest. The Commission shall summarily dismiss, motu proprio, an election protest and counter protest on the following grounds: a) The Commission has no jurisdiction over the subject matter; b) The protest is insufficient in form and content as required in Section 7 hereof; c) The petition is filed beyond the period prescribed in these rules; d) The filing fee is not paid within the period for filing the election protest or petition for quo warranto; and e) In case of protest where a cash deposit is required, the cash deposit is not paid within fifteen (15) days from the filing of the protest.

SUMMARY
INSTITUTION, CONCEPT & PROCESS COMELEC SUFFRAGE ELECTORAL PROCESS Registration Pre-Election Preparation Voting Counting Canvassing Proclamation LEGAL REMEDIES In the ELECTORAL PROCESS REGISTRATION Inclusion/Exclusion Annulment of Book of Voters PRE-ELECTION PREP Petition to DQ, to Deny Due Course, to Cancel COC, to Declare as Nuisance Candidate Postponement of Election VOTING Challenge of Voters Failure of Election COUNTING Objection to BEI Count CANVASSING Pre-proclamation Controversy PROCLAMATION Annulment of Proclamation Election Protest Quo Warranto Petition