A LOSING senatorial candidate in the 2016 national elections claimed on Friday that 2013 poll returns were discovered during a recount in some ballot boxes in Samar.
“Yung Calbayog, Samar, nagtataka kami…merong mga ballots na 2013 elections and we’re referring to 2016 senatorial elections so kinukwestyon namin ‘yun, bakit ‘yung laman nung iba is 2013 ballots,” said Francis Tolentino, now President Rodrigo Duterte’s adviser on political affairs, who appeared before the Senate Electoral Tribunal (SET) on Friday, the third day of a ballot recount.
(The Calbayog, Samar [ballot boxes], we were wondering…there were 2013 election returns and we’re referring to the 2016 senatorial elections so we are questioning that, why there were some are 2013 ballots.)
Tolentino filed an election protest in 2016 against Sen. Leila de Lima who edged out the former chairman of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) for the 12th and last slot in the senatorial race.
De Lima has since been detained on illegal drug charges.
Tolentino said he got zero votes in Isabela City, Sumisip, and Tabuan-Lasa in Basilan; Turtle Island in Tawi-Tawi, and; Parang, and Matanog in Maguindanao.
“Kinukwestiyon namin iyon…kasi for instance…provincewide I won in Maguindanao. So statistically improbable naman na may towns ka na zero when you won in the province…even in the capital town,” he said.
(We are questioning that…because for instance…provincewide, I won in Maguindanao. So it is statistically improbable that you have towns where you got zero when you won in the province…even in the capital town.)