4 Lanao Sur poll losers call for special elections, cite massive fraud
MANILA, Philippines – Four defeated gubernatorial candidates in Lanao del Sur on Wednesday asked the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to conduct a special elections in the province following alleged “massive fraud.”
The petition was filed by former TESDA Director General Guiling “Gene” Mamondiong, Hatta Dimaporo, Agakhan “Binladen” Sharief and Sultan Bob Datimbang.
Named as respondent to the petition was Mamintal “Bombit” Adiong, Jr., who was proclaimed as the winning candidate.
In their 12-page petition, the four candidates pointed out that the conduct of elections in the province was marred by violence, vote-buying and acts of “massive fraud” such pre-shading of ballots, and substitution of voters.
“Well, yung tinatawag pong 3-in-1, yung tinawag po nating governor, vice governor, congressman, eh nagbibigay po ng more or less P10,000. Pagdating po doon sa munisipyo, madaragdagan po yung mayor at yung kanyang mga kabing po, aabot po ng more or less P10,000 to P15,000,” Datimbang said.
“Ganyan po katalamak ang bentahan dito sa province ng Lanao del Sur kung kaya kami ay malugod na pumunta dito,” he added.
Hence, the four defeated candidates called on the Comelec to nullify the results of the recently concluded midterm elections in the entire province of Lanao del Sur, including Marawi City.
They also asked the Comelec to grant their petition to void the proclamation of the winning candidates and for the declaration of failure of elections in the province.
Two days before election day, President Rodrigo Duterte warned that he would deploy more troops to the province if the situation would not improve after reported cases of chaos and massive vote-buying.
Col. Romeo Brawner, commander of the 103rd Infantry Brigade based in Marawi City, however, dismissed the claims.
“I don’t know where you get the information that it’s chaotic here when, until today, we have zero election-related violence,” Brawner said. (Editor: Gilbert S. Gaviola)
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