THE Senate and the House of Representatives will convene as the National Board of Canvassers (NBOC) on Tuesday to prepare for the canvassing of votes for the presidential and vice presidential election.
Senate President Franklin Drilon and Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr. will lead the two chambers in adopting the rules and creating the Senate and House panels that will form the Joint Canvassing Committee.
The actual canvassing of votes will begin on Wednesday at the House of Representatives.
“On May 23, the Senate will first finish its work and pass on third reading a number of bills which are on the last stages of enactment. The next day we will proceed to join the House in convening the NBOC,” Senate Secretary Oscar Yabes said.
Yabes noted that the consolidated canvassing system, which received the electronically-transmitted certificates of canvass (COCs) from provincial and city boards of canvassers, as well as special canvassing panels for overseas absentee voting, has been initialized and stored at the Batasang Pambansa since May 9.
“Likewise, we will physically transport to the House on May 24, Tuesday, all of the ballot boxes purportedly containing COCs and election returns which, as mandated by the Constitution, have been earlier transmitted to the Senate,” he said.
Under Article VII, Section 4 of the 1987 Constitution, the Senate and the House of Representatives are tasked to canvass the votes for the presidential and vice presidential elections “upon determination of the authenticity and due execution thereof in the manner provided by law.”
“Unlike the senatorial and local elections where the canvassing of votes and the proclamation of the winning candidates are conducted by the Commission on Elections, it is Congress which canvasses the votes and proclaims the next president and vice-president,” Yabes explained.
Partial and unofficial tally showed Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte getting an unassailable lead of over six million votes against his closest rival, former Interior Secretary Manuel “Mar” Roxas 2nd.
The vice presidential race remains tight with Camarines Rep. Leni Robredo leading with only around 200,000 votes against Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr.