Roxas has shown no interest in VP electoral protest—Binay
The Supreme Court, sitting as Presidential Electoral Tribunal (PET), has “noted without action” the bid of Vice President Jejomar Binay to dismiss the election protest filed against him by former Interior Secretary Mar Roxas in connection with the 2010 vice presidential race.
“The Supreme Court, acting as Presidential Electoral Tribunal (PET) noted without action the submission dated 5 October 2015 as protestee Vice President Jejomar Binay on the alleged effects and consequences of the inaction of the protestant on his protest,” high court’s Information Chief Theodore Te said at a press conference on Wednesday.
“The protestee has asked that his Submission be noted and allowed to form part of the records,” Te added.
In a 19-page submission filed Oct. 5, Binay said Roxas has shown lack of interest in pursuing the case after he failed to pay the required filing fee worth P166,635,000 at the outset of the case.
Binay, through his counsels, also took note of Roxas’ inaction on his earlier plea for forensic examination and random manual audit of the ballots, which the Binay camp branded as a “self-serving fishing expedition” not provided under PET rules.
“Even as Protestee (Binay) maintains that the Protestant’s (Roxas) insistence on the conduct of the forensic analysis and the random manual audit prior to the revision of the ballots is not contemplated by the rules and is nothing but a self-serving fishing expedition, it is apparent from Protestant’s curious refusal to formally pursue his proposal that, he too is not confident that the said exercise is worthwhile,” the submission stated.
Binay lawyers said what Roxas has done “is to cast doubt upon the credibility of the elections based on his surmises and conjectures, which are also trumpeted in media, that the AES (automated elation system) was not reliable and that its integrity has been compromised,” they stressed.
“Protestee Vice President Binay respectfully submits that the inaction of the Protestant on his Protest, after Honorable Hearing Officer had already issued a preliminary conference report more than 16 months ago, is a clear evidence of his lack of interest in pursuing the case,” Binay’s camp alleged.
Binay added the other Supreme Court and other electoral tribunals have dismissed cases on the ground of inaction by the protestants.
Among the cases cited include rulings of the Supreme Court in Ortega vs. De Guzman, of the Senate Electoral Tribunal in Firdausi Abbas vs. Heherson Alvarez et al. and of the House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal in Guades vs. Uy.
The PET is composed of all 15 Justices of the Supreme Court.
Binay and Roxas are set to again face off in the presidential race in May next year. Tetch Torres-Tupas/TVJ
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