The Philippine Star

Leni re­lieved by CJ as­sur­ance on poll protest

- – He­len Flores Justice · Law · Maria Leonor Robredo · Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. · U.S. Supreme Court

Vice Pres­i­dent Leni Ro­bredo said yes­ter­day she felt re­lieved by Chief Jus­tice Lu­cas Ber­samin’s as­sur­ance that the poll protest filed against her by former sen­a­tor Fer­di­nand Mar­cos Jr. can­not be ma­nip­u­lated.

“We are thank­ful that the Chief Jus­tice was the one who set the record straight that it will not hap­pen,” the Vice Pres­i­dent said in her weekly pro­gram over dzXL.

Ro­bredo said she con­tin­ues to trust the Supreme Court, sit­ting as the Pres­i­den­tial Elec­toral Tri­bunal (PET), and hopes that they would de­cide on the case as soon as pos­si­ble to end all spec­u­la­tions.

Ro­bredo got 14,418,817 votes, or 263,473 votes more than the 14,155,344 re­ceived by Mar­cos dur­ing the May 2016 polls. Mar­cos filed his elec­tion protest against Ro­bredo on June 29, 2016.

In his pe­ti­tion, Mar­cos wanted PET to de­clare Ro­bredo’s vic­tory null and void and for it to con­duct a re­count of bal­lots in all of the 36,465 protested clus­tered precincts in 27 cities and prov­inces.

Ber­samin on Thurs­day as­sured the pub­lic that there is no ma­nip­u­la­tion at the PET as it con­tin­ues to de­lib­er­ate on Mar­cos’ protest.

Last Tues­day, the SC again de­ferred vot­ing on Mar­cos’ protest, more than a month since As­so­ciate Jus­tice Al­fredo Ben­jamin Caguioa, the per­son in charge of the case, sub­mit­ted his re­port on the re­vi­sion, or re­count, of bal­lots from three pi­lot prov­inces.

The re­count re­sult will de­ter­mine whether the protest will be dis­missed or not.

If there is a big dis­crep­ancy be­tween the of­fi­cial tally and fig­ures from the re­vi­sion, the PET would ex­pand the cover­age of the re­count to 24 other prov­inces and cities, cov­er­ing 30,000 poll precincts.

Ber­samin also said that they would “prob­a­bly” be vot­ing on the high-pro­file case dur­ing the next full ses­sion on Oct. 15.

The Vice Pres­i­dent’s camp last week filed a mo­tion ask­ing the PET to re­lease the copy of the re­sult of the re­vi­sion and re­count of bal­lots in three pi­lot prov­inces cov­ered by Mar­cos’ protest – Iloilo, Ne­gros Ori­en­tal and Ca­marines Sur.

Rat­ings don’t mat­ter

Ro­bredo, mean­while, said sur­veys show­ing Filipinos’ ur­gent con­cerns are more im­por­tant than her per­sonal rat­ings.

This was Ro­bredo’s re­ac­tion to the lat­est Pulse Asia’s sur­vey show­ing a drop in her ap­proval and trust scores.

“This (sur­vey rat­ing) is im­por­tant to us, but in sur­veys there are also is­sues in­di­cated. What do peo­ple feel about a cer­tain is­sue, that’s what we’re look­ing at,” she said over dzXL.

“What’s im­por­tant to us are the is­sues that mat­ter to the peo­ple. These are the most im­por­tant sur­veys,” she added.

The num­ber of peo­ple who ap­prove of the per­for­mance of the Vice Pres­i­dent went down from 55 per­cent in June to 50 per­cent in Septem­ber, ac­cord­ing to a Pulse Asia sur­vey con­ducted from Sept. 16 to 22.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Philippines