Former senator Ferdinand Marcos’ camp has pleaded before the Supreme Court (SC) to stand by its ruling that junked a prayer of the supporters of Vice President Maria Leonor “Leni” Robredo that they be allowed to pay the balance of her counter-protest fee.
Marcos is contesting results of the race for Vice President in the May 2016 elections, which he lost to Robredo by more than 200,000 votes.
In the pleading before the SC, sitting as the Presidential Electoral Tribunal, Marcos said intervention of the Piso Para kay Leni Movement is against the 2010 rules of the electoral tribunal.
The Marcos camp said the poll protest is clearly a contest between the defeated and the winning candidates and allowing the petitioners to intervene by granting their plea would be “highly unprocedural” and has no legal or factual basis.
“It appears that the only purpose of the movants in intervening in the case is to provide financial assistance to the protestee in defraying the cash deposit required for the counter-protest,” Marcos stated through his legal counsel George Erwin Garcia.
The group of Robredo led by Museo Pambata chairman Cristina Lim-Yuson has asked the Presidential Electoral Tribunal to allow them to pay the rest of Robredo’s counter-protest fee amounting to P7.4 million.
The SC earlier ordered Robredo to pay the amount of P15.4 million.
Other intervenors in the case are former social welfare secretary Corazon Soliman, former human rights commissioner Paulynn Sicam, former Bases Conversion and Development Authority board director Zorayda Amelia Alonzo, singer Celeste Legaspi-Gallardo and Ateneo de Manila University Press director Karina Bolasco.
“This is a necessary exercise of the right of suffrage considering that VP [Vice President] Leni will be deprived of her victory, we will be deprived of her victory because she is financially disadvantaged,” they said.
The intervenors added that they have already raised P7,442. 859.34 from more than 20,000 people as of August 30.
In his protest, Marcos assailed election results in 39,221 clustered precincts—36,465 of which he pays for the conduct of manual count and judicial revision
Based on Commission on Elections data, the 39,221 clustered precincts are composed of 132,446 precincts.
Marcos, who lost to Robredo by 263,473 votes, accused her of “massive electoral fraud, anomalies and irregularities” such as pre-shading of ballots, pre-loaded Secure Digital cards, misreading of ballots, malfunctioning VCMs (vote counting machines) and an “abnormally high” unaccounted votes/undervotes for the position of Vice President.
The electoral tribunal has ordered retrieval of all ballot boxes and election paraphernalia in the three pilot provinces of Camarines Sur, Iloilo and Negros Oriental.