People v Judge Basilia; GR Nos. 83938-40.; 06 Nov 1989; 179 SCRA 87 (1989)

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As an aftermath of the congressional election, complaints for violations of Section 261 of the Omnibus Election Code were filed with the Office of the Provincial Fiscal. After preliminary investigation of the foregoing complaints, the provincial fiscal filed in the RTC the criminal complaints against private respondents for vote-buying and for carrrying a deadly weapon. Respondent judge motu proprio dismissed the information filed by the provincial fiscal.

Whether or not COMELEC has the authority to deputize the chief state prosecutors, provincial and city fiscals and their assistants under Section 2(4) and (8), Article IX-C of the Constitution.

YES. There is no dispute that COMELEC is vested with the power and authority to conduct preliminary investigation of all election offenses punishable under the Omnibus Election Code and to prosecute such offenses in court.

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