MANILA, Philippines – The Supreme Court on Tuesday unseated incumbent Rep. Lucy Torres-Gomez (Leyte, 4th District) , the High Court’s spokesman said.
Lawyer Theodore Te said the SC voted 7-4-4 on the case filed by her rival, Silverio Tagolino, ruling that Torres-Gomez’s substitution for her husband, actor Richard gomez, during the May 2010 election was invalid.
“Quo warranto granted, Torres-Gomez ousted,” Te said in a text message.
Torres-Gomez’s substitution was reportedly backed by Comelec’s earlier resolution 8678, which states that “Substitutes for candidates who have died, suffered permanent incapacity, or were disqualified by final judgment, may file their certificates of candidacy up to mid-day of election day, or May 10, 2010.”
Earlier, the House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal (HRET), in a decision last Mar.22, 2012, upheld the eligibility of Torres-Gomez as a candidate for the position of representative of the fourth district of Leyte when it dismissed the quo warranto case filed by Tagolino.
In the decision, Torres-Gomez was declared qualified as a candidate, being a resident of the fourth district of Leyte.
The HRET further declared that her substitution for Gomez is valid. Upon assumption of office, Torres-Gomez appointed her husband as her chief of staff.
Tagolino questioned the validity of the substitution of Torres-Gomez for her husband, alleging that the certificate of candidacy of Gomez was cancelled, thus he could not be substituted.
Tagolino also questioned the eligibility of Torres-Gomez, alleging she is not a resident of Ormoc, Leyte.
Torres-Gomez is seeking re-election.
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