Newly appointed Commission on Elections (COMELEC) Commissioner Marlon Casquejo is set to spearhead the poll body’s operations for the 2019 automated elections.
Comelec Chairman Sheriff Abas announced yesterday Casquejos will head the Steering Committee for the 2019 polls during the commissioner’s oath-taking ceremony at the Comelec main office in Intramuros, Manila.
“We will immediately put him to test by appointing him as head of the Steering Committee for the 2019 elections. And when I offered it to Commissioner Casquejo, no hesitation, no complaints. He said ‘yes sir’. That is the real mindset of a field official,” Abas said in his speech during the event.
Casquejo admitted he only learned of the assignment yesterday, but he said he still welcomed it as an opportunity to show his capability.
“I am already used to it while I was in the field office. I have been doing this for many many elections. Twice manual elections and twice automated elections. So I will just give my inputs with regards to the preparations with regards to the automation,” Casquejos told reporters in an interview.
Casquejo started his stint at Comelec’s field office in Davao Region Office way back in 2004.
The election official has since then continued to be promoted in the said field office until he became its Assistant Regional Election Director (ARED).
Commissioner Luie Guia said Casquejo is an appropriate pick for the 2019 Steering Committee due to his extensive experience.
“He brings with him his vast experience from the field. And he is also a computer engineer,” Guia said.
Last week, Malacañang appointed Casquejo as the replacement for retired commissioner Christian Robert Lim. He is expected to complete his term on 2025.
Casquejo said while he applied for the position, he was still surprised Duterte decided to appoint him.
“I did not expect to be picked. I am just a ordinary field officer, who just showed what he can do in the field,” Casquejo said.
However, with his appointment, Casquejo said some people might suspect him to show partiality in cases involving the President since they hail from the same province.
“I already anticipated this…so one of my thrust [during my term] so there will be no doubts [in my decisions] is transparency. All of my actions in Commission will be known to the public,” Casquejo said.
He pointed out his clean track record during the elections in 2004, 2007, 2010, and 2016.
“I will not do anything to destroy my integrity which I kept intact for 14 years…The public has nothing to worry about this,” he added.