Former senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” R. Marcos Jr. has asked the Supreme Court (SC) to hasten the decryption and printing of ballot images from clustered precincts in 30 provinces that are the subject of his election protest against Vice President Maria Leonor “Leni” Robredo.
In a seven-page motion before the court sitting as the Presidential Electoral Tribunal (PET), the Marcos camp sought the decryption and printing from secure digital (SD) cards and data storage devices from 36,465 clustered precincts ahead of the scheduled preliminary conference on June 21.
The contested areas subject of the proposed decryption and printing of ballot images cover the provinces of Cebu, Leyte, Negros Occidental, Negros Oriental, Masbate, Zamboanga del Sur, Zamboanga del Norte, Bukidnon, Iloilo, Bohol, Quezon, Batangas, Western Samar, Misamis Oriental, Camarines Sur, Palawan, Albay, Zamboanga Sibugay, Misamis Occidental, Pangasinan and Isabela; and Iloilo City, Bacolod City, Cebu City, Lapu-Lapu City, Zamboanga City and the second district of Northern Samar.
Decryption and printing of the ballot images are to be conducted and supervised by the election records and statistics departments of the Commission on Elections.
Marcos counsel George Erwin Garcia said the 2010 Rules of the PET allows any course of action to expedite the proceedings. Such procedure will “assist in the preparation for the recount proceedings and the presentation of evidence for the protest,” he said.
Marcos is contesting the vice-presidential election results in 39,221 clustered precincts, composed of 132,446 regular precincts. He wants a recount in 36,465 clustered precincts and the annulment of results in the rest.
The Marcos camp claims the election was marred by “massive electoral fraud, anomalies and irregularities” such as pre-shading of ballots, secure digital cards pre-loaded with data, misreading of ballots, malfunctioning vote-counting machines, and an “abnormally high” unaccounted votes or undervotes for the position of vice president.