Why this petition matters
Civic leaders in the Philippines have a lodged a petition to block Ferdinand Marcos Jr., the presumptive winner of the country's May 9 presidential election, from taking office, alleging that he lied when he said he had not been convicted of any crime.
"Elections are more than just a numbers game such that an election victory cannot bypass election eligibility requirements," the petition filed on Tuesday reads.
The case has drawn a flurry of local media attention, even after the election, because the stakes are high. The Supreme Court is the last opportunity for the group of civic leaders, made up of survivors of Marcos's late father's brutal decades-long dictatorship and backed by human rights lawyers, to prove Marcos Jr., also known by his childhood name Bongbong or BBM, is not eligible to run for president. In their petition, the authors assert that Bongbong was convicted of tax evasion in 1995, which should have barred him from ever seeking public office.
The Philippines Commission on Election, or COMELEC, has twice dismissed this same petition, the final time just days after the election was held, as well as six other similar complaints to disqualify Bongbong from running for president — actions that have drawn public criticism that the body had given preferential treatment to Marcos