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Comelec junks petition to declare controversial influencer Francis Leo Marcos as nuisance candidate

Controversial influencer Francis Leo Marcos (FLM) continues to run as senator.

The Commission on Elections (COMELEC) has denied a petition to declare controversial influencer Francis Leo Marcos, also known as “FLM,” as nuisance candidate. The petition was rejected as led by the Law Department of this Commission. Check out the full copy of the resolution below. 

The 42-year old controversial influencer filed his certificate of candidacy (COC) for Senator last October 8 through his legal counsel chief, Atty. Jonie Caroche-Vestido.

Before this Commission (Second Division) is a Petition’ filed motu proprio by the Law Department of this Commission seeking the cancellation and/or denial of due course of the Certificate of Candidacy [COC] of Francis Leo Antonio Marcos (Respondent) on the ground that he is a nuisance candidate.

FACTS

On 08 October 2021, Respondent filed his COC for the position of Senator in connection with the 09 May 2022 National and Local Elections (2022 NLE].

In Item No. 3 of his COC, Respondent stated that he is an independent candidate. 

Consequently, in Item No. 20 of the same COC, he indicated “BUSINESSMAN” as his profession/occupation.

On 13 October 2021, the Law Department of the Commission filed the instant Petition alleging that Respondent filed the COC to put the election process in mockery or disrepute, and as gleaned from the said act or circumstance, he has no bona fide intention to run for Senator.

Specifically, the Law Department essentially asserted that Respondent is not virtually known to the entire country and has no means to launch a nationwide campaign. He neither has support from a political party or a nationwide network or organization of supporters.

Respondent likewise does not appear to be personally capable of persuading a substantial number of voters from different parts of the country.

Acting on the Petition, the Commission (Second Division) issued an Order dated 20 October 2021 directing Respondent to file via Email his verified Answer cum Memorandum within a non-extendible period of three (3) days from receipt of the notice.

He was likewise directed to immediately file four (4) hard copies of the same through the fastest means available after the electronic filing.

On 09 November 2021, Respondent filed his verified Answer cum Memorandum.*

ISSUE
Whether Respondent should be declared a nuisance candidate.

DISCUSSION
The Commission (Second Division) DENIES the Petition.

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