Embattled Commission on Elections (COMELEC) chairman Andres Bautista says he will be resigning from his post as head of the Philippines top electoral body “at the end of the year.”
Bautista’s decision comes after allegations of graft, corruption, and electoral fraud surfaced with his estranged wife’s testimony that he had “hidden” hundreds of millions of pesos in more than thirty bank accounts.
According to Tisha Cruz-Bautista, she discovered the bank documents in a cabinet in their house, and decided to come forward because she feared for her and her children’s safety. Bautista has disputed the allegations.
In his letter addressed to what he calls his “COMELEC family,” Bautista says that after much “prayer and discernment” he now “believe(s) that this is right time to step down.”
An impeachment complaint was filed against Bautista in congress. But this was junked by congressmen due to a technicality, in particular a “flaw in the wording in the verification.”
When the post becomes vacant, President Duterte will be free to appoint the new COMELEC chairman who shall oversee the holding of the watershed 2019 local and national elections.