Stop Leni inauguration, SC asked
Losing vice presidential candidate and ex-senator Ferdinand ‘Bongbong’ Marcos Jr. filed an electoral protest Wednesday with the Supreme Court (SC), asking it to stop the inauguration of Leni Robredo as the country’s new deputy leader.
Marcos filed the 1,000-page petition with the court—acting as the Presidential Electoral Tribunal—urging it to study affidavits and certificates of canvass that he claimed provided “clear and convincing evidence of what is now known as the biggest electoral fraud in the history of the Philippines.”
“It is my moral and social duty to the Filipino people to expose the truth and the fraudulent machinations, anomalies and irregularities which attended the recently concluded May 2016 elections, by filing this election protest. I owe it to the 14 million people who voted for me and to the millions of Filipinos whose voices were not heard,” Marcos said in a statement.
An estimated 100 Marcos loyalists, many of them wearing red shirts and headbands, picketed Supreme Court in Manila, chanting “Marcos, Marcos pa rin.” The slogan was largely during the election of his father, the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos.
Robredo welcomed the protest, which would allow her to respond in a proper forum, her spokesperson Georgina Hernandez said. “We will be able to answer to allegations leveled against us,” she said, and welcomed the “formal process” that Marcos initiated.
The Commission on Elections (Comelec) for its part expressed confidence the move would not dent the credibility of the May polls.
“The filing of a protest is part of [the] electoral process actually,” Comelec Commissioner Luie Tito Guia told reporters. “The filing of the case will give an opportunity for all parties to really prove or disprove the allegations.”
In his petition, Marcos said the votes that were counted for Robredo were “products of electoral frauds, anomalies and irregularities.” He said votes counted for him “were significantly reduced, manipulated and altered” to make it appear that he placed behind Robredo in the race.
Marcos lawyer George Garcia described a series of electoral frauds, anomalies and irregularities allegedly by personalities allied with Robredo. Marcos was leading during the first day of canvassing on May 10, but tailed Robredo from the second day of the canvassing until the end.
Garcia said Marcos was specifically contesting the election results in 39,221 clustered precincts in 25 provinces and five highly-urbanized cities all over the country.
Marcos’s petition argued that the automated elections was flawed and that there were “traditional” modes of cheating like vote buying, pre-shading, intimidation and failure of elections, among others.
It also pointed out the unauthorized introduction by Smartmatic’s Marlon Garcia of a new hash code (or a new script/program) into the transparency server, which it said triggered unauthorized changes in the vote.
Marcos argued that 13 days before the Election Day, Comelec issued a resolution ordering the Board of Canvassers not to transmit the Certificate of Canvass until all SD cards from the vote-counting machines would have been uploaded or imported into their Consolidation and Canvassing System.
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