Harriet Demetriou

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Harriet Demetriou
Chairwoman of the Commission on Elections
In office
January 11, 1999 – February 15, 2001
Appointed byJoseph Estrada
Preceded byLuzviminda Tancangco
Succeeded byAlfredo Benipayo
Personal details

Harriet Obias Demetriou is a Filipino lawyer and was the first female Chairperson of the Philippine election commission, the COMELEC, appointed by President Joseph Estrada. She was one of only four women appointed to the Philippine Election Commission.

Demetriou, the then-judge of Pasig City regional trial court, was known to the public for handing down the March 1995 verdict against former Calauan, Laguna mayor Antonio Sanchez and six others (then-PNP Calauan Deputy Chief George Medialdea, Luis Corcolon, Rogelio "Boy" Corcolon, Zoilo Ama, Baldwin Brion, and Pepito Kawit) for the rape-slay of 21-year-old Mary Eileen Sarmenta and the killing of 19-year-old Allan Gomez in June 1993.[1]

Comelec Post[edit]

On January 11, 1999, President Estrada appointed Sandiganbayan Justice Harriet Demetriou as Chairman of the Commission on Elections. After the events of January 2001 that led to the ouster of President Estrada from power, Demetriou tendered her courtesy resignation which was accepted by President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.

MAGDALO Lawyer[edit]

Former Commission of Elections chair Harriet Demetriou was the lead counsel for the core officers of the Magdalo group, who led the siege on the Oakwood hotel on July 27, 2003.[2]

See also[edit]

Preceded by
Luzviminda Tancangco
COMELEC Chairman
January 11, 1999– February 15, 2001
Succeeded by
Alfredo Benipayo


  1. ^ "'A plot hatched in hell': Timeline of the Gomez-Sarmenta murder case". ABS CBN News. August 22, 2019. Retrieved August 22, 2019.
  2. ^ access library