Vice President Leni Robredo on Friday asked the Supreme Court, acting as Presidential Electoral Tribunal, to deny the appeal of former Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. seeking to reverse its decision to dismiss his election protest against her, saying the protestant “needs to concede and accept his defeat with grace.”
In her comment and opposition, Robredo through her lawyers said Marcos’ motion to reconsider the PET’s decision that dismissed his election protest “must be denied for utter lack of merit.”
Last Feb. 16, the PET through Associate Justice Marvic Leonen unanimously affirmed the proclamation of Robredo as the duly elected vice president in the 2016 national elections as it dismissed the former senator’s poll protest.
Marcos filed a motion for reconsideration on May 6 seeking to overturn the PET’s decision and asked the tribunal to “proceed with the presentation of evidence for the third cause of action.”
Marcos’s third cause of action seeks the annulment of election results in the provinces of Maguindanao, Lanao del Sur, and Basilan on the ground of alleged terrorism, intimidation, and harassment of voters, as well as pre-shading of ballots in all of the 2,756, protested clustered precincts.
He also asked the PET to conduct another preliminary conference and proceed with the presentation of evidence for his third cause of action.
At the same time, Marcos said the tribunal erred in dismissing his third cause of action without affording him the opportunity to present evidence.
In dismissing Marcos’s protest, the PET ruled that based on the final tally after revision and appreciation of the votes in the pilot provinces of Camarines Sur, Negros Oriental and Iloilo, protestee Robredo maintained, as in fact she increased her lead with 14,436,337 votes over protestant Marcos who obtained 14,157,771 votes.
“After the revision and appreciation, the lead of protestee Robredo increased from 263,473 to 278,566,” the PET noted.
In her comment, Robredo said that Marcos’ motion was “a mere rehash of arguments previously passed upon” by the PET justices.
Robredo stressed that since Marcos himself chose the three pilot provinces where he failed to get substantial recovery of votes, the PET “did not err in dismissing the election protest.”
“Now that he was proven wrong, protestant Marcos now wants to change the Rules so he can keep fanning the flames on his unsubstantiated allegations,” she lamented.
“Protestant Marcos has no one to blame but himself for the dismissal of his election protest. Now, having failed to show any substantial recovery, protestant Marcos is now insisting on proceeding to his Third Cause of Action,” the vice president said.