Robredo vows to protect people’s votes in poll dispute
MANILA — Vice President Leni Robredo on Tuesday went to the Supreme Court sitting as the Presidential Electoral Tribunal (PET) to pay the first installment of the P15.5 million fee required for her counter protest against Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Jr.
She vowed to her supporters that gathered along Padre Faura that she would fight for their votes.
Robredo also promised to block all efforts of Marcos to return to power, emphasizing that the country has suffered enough during the brutal martial law period under his father, the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos.
“(K)ahit na mahirap, kahit po maraming pagsubok na pinagdaraanan, hindi naman po natin ipapayag na basta-basta kunin na lang sa atin yung boses ng taong bayan. Alam po ninyo, ang laban na ito hindi ito tungkol sa atin. Ang laban na ito ay tungkol sa ating lahat,” Robredo said.
(Even if it’s difficult, even if we’re going through many challenges, we will not let the voice of the people to be taken away. You know that this fight is not about me. This fight is about all of us.)
Accompanied by her election lawyer, Romulo Macalintal, Robredo paid P8 million “as first installment for cash deposit in PET case No. 005,” as shown in the PET receipt.
Aside from using her personal money, Robredo said she borrowed money from relatives of her late husband, Jesse Robredo.
They are Vicente Hao Chin, Pablito Chua, and Rafael Bundoc.
“Nabalitaan po natin dahil wala tayo pera, minamaliit tayo dahil san ko raw kukunin. San ko raw kukunin yung ating idedeposito at babantayan kung saan ito galing. Ito po mahabang panahon nanungkulan ang asawa ko. Pareho din po mahabang panahon nanungkulan ang mga Marcos. Totoo po wala kami pambayad, isang pagpapakita na kahit mahabang panahong nanungkulan hindi [kami] nagnakaw ng pera ng bayan,” Robredo said.
(We have heard that since we don’t have the money, they have looked down on us and have asked where I would get the money. They asked where I would get my deposit and that they have vowed to monitor the source of the funds. My husband served in government for a long time. The Marcoses also served in government for a long time. It is true we don’t have the money to pay the deposit, which only shows to everyone that even if we have served in government for a long time, we never stole from the nation.)
“Yung akin pong tanong, masasabi po ba yan ni Ginoong Marcos na hindi nagnakaw ang pamilya nya sa kaban ng bayan? Yung P8 million po hirap na hirap tayo na ibigay. Yung P36 million ng mga Marcos isang iglap andyan na agad,” she said.
(This is my question, can Mr. Marcos say that his family did not steal from the nation’s coffers? We had a hard time raising the P8 million. But the Marcoses were able to pay the P36 million in a blink of an eye.)
The Vice President noted that martial law victims comprised majority of the estimated 70 supporters who showed up at the Supreme Court.
“Yung laban po nila mas grabe pa sa laban ko. Yung laban po nila ilang dekada na yung kanilang karapatan ay talagang pinagdusahan, pinaghirapan at hanggang ngayon andito pa rin sila. Ilang dekada na po ang nakaraan dito pa rin sila, Pinapakipaglaban ang kanilang karapatan. Naniningil sa dapat ibigay sa kanila,” Robredo said
(Their fight is bigger, tougher than mine. Their fight for their rights has gone on for decades, they have suffered and they have endeavored but until now, they’re still here, after many decades. They’re still fighting for their rights. They’re still demanding the justice due them.)
She said Marcos should have just allotted the money he paid for his electoral protest to the martial law victims.
“Nalulungkot po tayo na imbes na ibigay ito sa mga biktima ginagastos ulit para makabalik sa kapangyarihan. Kaya ito po ngayong umaga nagpapakita na nagkakaisa ulit tayo. Na yung laban na ito ay laban nating lahat kaya nagpapasalamat po kami sa pakikiisa nyo po sa amin,” Robredo said.
(We’re sad that instead of giving it to the victims, he has spent his money for efforts to get back in power. This is why this morning, we’re showing our unity. That is our fight and we’re so thankful for your solidarity with us.)
Marcos earlier settled P36 million of the P66.2 million total cash deposit required of him by the PET as cash deposit for his protest covering 132,446 polling precincts. SFM/rga
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