Central Luzon DeskCarmela Reyes
CALUMPIT, Bulacan, Philippines—Injustice.
This was how Roberto Pagdanganan, recently declared by the Commission on Elections winner of the 2007 gubernatorial race in Bulacan, called the decision of the Supreme Court to extend by a week its status quo ante order that allowed unseated Governor Joselito Mendoza to keep the post.
Pagdanganan, who met about 1,000 supporters in the family’s ancestral house here on Tuesday, said the delay in his assumption of office was an example of the legal saying, “Justice delayed is justice denied.”
On March 9, the Supreme Court issued a status quo ante order, which gave Mendoza a week to hold on to his office while the court was deciding on the correctness of a Comelec decision unseating Mendoza in favor of Pagdanganan.
Pagdanganan said he felt “terrible” because this was the third time since 2009 that his assumption was delayed.
“The first was on July 14, 2009, the second was on March 9 and this one today (March 16). The July 2009 status quo ante order was lifted in October that year when the Supreme Court ordered the Comelec to proceed hearing my protest case [against Mendoza],” Pagdanganan said.
But he said he would not give up on this fight.
Mendoza, who arrived at the provincial capitol at 2 p.m., proceeded to a chapel before he went to his office.
Although the recent Supreme Court order gave him a reprieve, it still left Bulakenyos, especially him, wondering on the case’s outcome.
“This is a good development, in a way, but there is no closure… I was hoping they would settle this issue so we can move on and work,” he said.
Mendoza said he believed that he won in the 2007 election.
Superintendent Manuel Lukban Jr., chief of the provincial police’s mobile group, said Pagdanganan and Mendoza agreed not to bring and allow their supporters to put up barricades and gather at the provincial capitol to avoid violent confrontations.
Police have been put on standby to maintain order once the Supreme Court decision is issued.
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|Escudero, Francis Joseph (GO)||1,530,337|
|Legarda, Loren (GO)||1,445,355|
|Aquino, Benigno Simeon III (GO)||1,427,372|
|Lacson, Panfilo (GO)||1,315,961|
|Pangilinan, Francis (IND)||1,270,851|
|Villar, Manuel Jr (GO)||1,267,929|
|Cayetano, Alan Peter (GO)||1,097,065|
|Arroyo, Joker (TU)||1,046,152|
|Angara, Edgardo (TU)||999,396|
|Trillanes, Antonio IV (GO)||980,643|
|Recto, Ralph (TU)||971,250|
|Zubiri, Juan Miguel (TU)||957,930|
|Legarda, Loren (GO)||14,161,803|
|Escudero, Francis Joseph (GO)||13,919,444|
|Lacson, Panfilo (GO)||12,027,067|
|Villar, Manuel Jr (GO)||11,674,064|
|Aquino, Benigno Simeon III (GO)||11,107,999|
|Pangilinan, Francis (IND)||11,092,665|
|Angara, Edgardo (TU)||9,689,358|
|Cayetano, Alan Peter (GO)||9,030,748|
|Honasan, Gregorio (IND)||9,013,231|
|Arroyo, Joker (TU)||8,977,075|
|Trillanes, Antonio IV (GO)||8,710,648|
|Pimentel, Aquilino III (GO)||8,449,279|
|Legarda, Loren (GO)||18,352,290|
|Escudero, Francis Joseph (GO)||18,095,757|
|Lacson, Panfilo (GO)||15,442,480|
|Villar, Manuel Jr (GO)||15,192,880|
|Pangilinan, Francis (IND)||14,415,704|
|Aquino, Benigno Simeon III (GO)||14,234,979|
|Angara, Edgardo (TU)||12,404,138|
|Cayetano, Allan Peter (GO)||11,736,410|
|Arroyo, Joker (TU)||11,550,655|
|Honasan, Gregorio (IND)||11,487,784|
|Trillanes, Antonio IV (GO)||11,138,067|
|Pimentel, Aquilino III (GO)||10,865,397|