Tuesday, 12 November, 2019

Tribunal to start 2016 VP race votes review

Former Senator Ferdinand Former Senator Ferdinand"Bongbong Marcos Jr. and Vice President Leni Robredo. File Composite
Patty Aguilar | 04 April, 2018, 03:03

Robredo won by over 200,000 votes against Marcos.

On Monday, the Marcos camp found that ballots in four ballot boxes were wet and one had a puncture, while 38 out of 40 opened ballot boxes from Bato, Camarines Sur had missing audit logs - indications the election documents had been tampered with and compromised.

In press briefing Monday, SC spokesman Theodore O. Te said: "The schedule of revision shall be from Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m.to 12 noon for the morning session, and 1p.m.to 4:30 p.m. for the afternoon session".

Lawyer Jose Lemuel Arenas, a PET ad hoc committee member, said the revision is the process of verifying the ballots, to recount the votes of the parties, and to record the objections or claims of the parties.

Arenas said for each table, there will be three revisors - the head revisor (employee of PET), the protestant's revisor and the protestee's revisor. The PET has provided a locker for their belongings. For 300 to 699 ballots, they only have a little more than eight hours.

The tribunal is expecting some 213 personnel to come in per day during the recount.

Each committee is composed of a head revisor - who is PET employee - and one representative for each of the two candidates.

"During the revision, the Head Revisor will segregate and examine the contents of each ballot box and on the basis thereof, determine the number of votes received by each party".

Arenas said that other ballot boxes are now with the Commission on Elections, due to storage issues.

He pointed out that audit logs in 38 ballot boxes are very important as they contain the transactions made in a precinct.

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This is the first time ever that the PET will be doing a recount.

In the same interview, Marcos said that it may take more than three months to finish the manual recount of ballots in the three provinces. "Nakakagulat naman", she added.

The PET said it still can not determine when the recount will be finished.

Marcos said he was hoping the withdrawal of the revisors would not result in another round of delays especially after his camp claimed to have found "clear signs of fraud".

Marcos, son of the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos, filed on June 29, 2017 an electoral protest before the PET, accusing Robredo of rigging the results of the May 9, 2016 vice presidential elections to secure the second highest position in the land.

The manual recount will cover the provinces of Camarines Sur, Iloilo and Negros Oriental with a total of 5,418 clustered precincts.

The said provinces were chosen by Marcos as the best provinces where he could prove the irregularities he cited in his poll protest.

"If it is following the rules of PET that is being placed in issue, maybe Ms. Marcos should also explain why she blatantly violated the rules when she gatecrashed the revision area", Sardillo added.

Based on election results, Robredo was declared victor in the vice -presidential race with 14,418,817 votes or 263,473 more than the 14,155,344 votes garnered by Marcos.

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