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Tolentino wants ex-poll chief summoned in poll protest vs De Lima

By: - Reporter / @JhoannaBINQ
/ 11:46 AM January 31, 2018

In this undated photo, former MMDA Chairman Francis Tolentino confers on supporters before he attends the preliminary hearing on the electoral protest he filed against Senator Leila De Lima in Manila. (INQUIRER FILE PHOTO / RICHARD A. REYES)

The camp of Presidential Adviser for Political Affairs Francis Tolentino is set to ask the Senate Election Tribunal (SET) to summon former Commission on Elections (Comelec) chairman Andres Bautista to stand as hostile witness in his electoral protest against Senator Leila de Lima.

At Wednesday’s Kapihan sa Manila Bay news forum, Tolentino said Bautista must be subpoenaed since the former election chief could explain certain issues that could have resulted in his defeat in the 2016 senatorial race.

“We will be asking the presence of former Comelec Chairman Andy Bautista as a hostile witness, sa ayaw niya at sa gusto (whether he likes it or not),” Tolentino said.

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Specifically, the defeated senatorial bet said that his legal team would question Bautista’s approval of the six to seven regional hubs that served as a “queue” server during the general elections almost two years ago.

The approval, Tolentino claimed, was made six days before the May 2016 elections and allegedly without the knowledge of the political parties and candidates.

He asserted that the process lacked transparency and was against the law.

“Sa batas kasi bago magkaroon ng hub, kailangan informed ang candidates, parties. Kailangan makita ‘yung source code. So, nawala ‘yung transparency dito basta na lang nila inimplement,” he explained.

(Under the law, before forming a hub, you need to inform the candidates, parties. The source code needs to be examined. So, the transparency was foregone here, they just implemented it.)

“Eh six days before the elections wala nang makakaintindi no’n kasi busy na lahat eh (no one would understand it because everyone was busy), not even the media,” he added.         /kga

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TAGS: Andres Bautista, Comelec, Election, Francis Tolentino, ‎protest, Senator Leila de Lima, SET
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