Comelec Probe Recommends Spokesman's Relief Due to Debate Fiasco

There's 'reasonable cause' for further proceedings.
Photo/s: Comelec/Facebook

A Comelec investigation into alleged bouncing checks dues that caused the last installment of the poll body's presidential and vice presidential debates has recommended the relief of two officials from their posts, according to an official statement released Friday.

Commissioner Rey Bulay, who led the inquiry, said he found "reasonable cause" to initiate an administrative and disiplinary proceedings. He recommended that Directors James Jimenez and Frances Arabe be temporarily relieved from "any functions involving media relations and exposure".

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Bulay said the relief was meant "to ensure the observance of due process, and a thorough, proper, fair and impartial probe". Jimenez is the Comelec's longtime spokesman.

The third and final PiliPinas debates was postponed and eventually scrapped in favor of panel interviews after check payments to the five-star hotel venue, Sofitel Manila, bounced.

Bulay said Jimenez and Arabe should be still allowed to perform other functions under the supervision of their committee heads to “prevent disruption in the essential election operations.” 

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