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1/4 shading for Leni is cheating, period.

How difficult is it to shade a small oval to indicate a voter’s choice among candidates for a political position? Well, with the use of a marking pen, it doesn’t take one second to fully shade the blank space inside the oval. It would be more difficult keeping the shading from spilling out of the oval itself. Hence, it is hard to imagine how a voter, even the old who might have difficulty holding the marking pen, could possibly shade only 1/4 of the oval.

ballot shading

That’s especially when we consider that the candidate is a local bet aspiring to be Vice President of the Republic. If the voters, thousands of them in Camarines Sur in this case, really rooted for Leni Robredo, they would have taken extra care in shading the oval just to make sure their votes are properly credited to her.

It must also be recalled that for months before the elections, the Comelec and media organizations, especially TV, aired voter education activities, and much airtime was spent showing voters how to properly shade the oval. Nothing was left to chance, and shading the oval just 1/4 of the space simply cannot be justified.

This is the reason the efforts of Leni to get the Supreme Court, sitting as the Presidential Electoral Tribunal, to accept her argument that 25% shading of the oval is sanctioned by Comelec. With the small size of the oval, 1/4 is more like a dot using the marking pen. It is not the kind of shading a voter would make to express his or her vote. It is more consistent with haste and rush to mark hundreds, if not thousands of ballots, by one individual.

What this indicates is fraud, especially because it involves thousands of ballots found with only 25% shading. It unmasks the gigantic cheating to add votes for Leni and enable her to catch up with her rival, Senator Bongbong Marcos, who had led by 1.9 million votes going into the third day of the national canvass in May 2016. As experience has shown time and again, a trend is established early in the first six hours of an electronic canvass, and never is reversed in the way Robredo squeaked past Marcos.

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Game over for Robredo: cheating backfires

The nullification of an estimated 5,000 votes for Leni Robredo after these were discovered to have been shaded well below the 50% threshold set by the Comelec in 2010 has sent her camp into panic. Her lawyers have asked the Supreme Court, sitting as the Presidential Electoral Tribunal (PET), to allow ballots shaded only 25% of the oval beside her name as valid votes. The PET, however, denied her motion. There is no Comelec Resolution that allows the counting of votes with only 25% shading, the PET ruled.

Still trying to play victim of injustice, Robredo has issued a statement asking the PET to “play fair” even as she filed a motion for reconsideration on its ruling Thursday. (April 19, 2018) She insisted that the PET allow shading of the oval beside her name to be counted in her favor. This is an exercise in futility. As the PET pointed out, the Random Manual Audit Guidelines and Report submitted by the Comelec cannot substitute for the provisions of Comelec Resolution No. 8804 promulgated on March 22, 2010 that set the threshold at 50% shading.Leni motion for reconsideration

What the Comelec being relied upon by Robredo to back her claim — Minute Resolution No. 16-600 — is a tell-tale sign of the post-election cheating that former Comelec chairman Andres Bautista put into motion to cover the tracks of the irregularities that propelled her to a hairline victory over former Senator Bongbong Marcos.

Instead of helping her, the evidence that Robredo is now presenting even serves as a rusty anchor that will pull her down to the bottom of the sea. It is game over for the Liberal Party cheating machinery. The nullification of the 5,000 votes for Robredo is a significant shift in the tide. Add to that the glaring evidence of tampering with the ballot boxes and rendering the ballots useless for purposes of manual recount by soaking them in water.

The come-from-behind “victory” of Robredo defied all logic. Indeed, as in almost all elections, especially for those conducted electronically, the trends on who will emerge the winner is set after 2 or 3 hours. Marcos had already led by over 1 million when all of a sudden this was reversed. At the blink of the eye, Robredo won by 263,000 votes. Only cheating could have made that possible.

Wet ballots a tactic to delay manual recount

A few days ago, Atty. Romulo Macalintal, lawyer for Leni Robredo, said the manual recount could drag on for six years. Ordinarily, that statement is to be taken with a grain of salt. But the discovery of wet ballots not only in the Presidential Electoral Tribunal where the electoral protest filed by former Senator Bongbong Marcos is being heard since April 2, I can see that this is the tactic adopted by the Liberal Party to prevent an early resolution.

Yesterday, my sources at the House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal (HRET) revealed that ballots in the third district of Camarines Sur were also found to be wet. These were from the town of Calabanga and Naga City. After the HRET is finished with these ballots, they will have to be stuffed back into the boxes and delivered to the PET. Well, the ballots might already have dried up by then. But the PET will only find what is now known: the ballots are useless for purposes of revision.

This is no longer an accident of nature. My guess is that wet ballots will ultimately be found in all towns of Camarines Sur when the revision committees at the PET shall have completed the task of opening each ballot box and taking out their contents. Is there any other conclusion we can reach with these discoveries of wet ballots? This wasn’t the work of nature; it was done by human hands.

Atty. Romulo Macalintal was quick to downplay the discovery of wet ballots. Marcos, he said, has no evidence of the fraud that he is claiming. Well, he is right in a way. That’s because the water soaked ballots have been rendered unreadable. It will prevent the revisors from doing what they have been mandated to do: examine each ballot to find out to which candidate an individual vote went. There is nothing to read anymore, that’s why.

I will now connect this to what Macalintal said about the manual recount taking as long as six years. He is conditioning the mind of the people to expect further delays in knowing the truth. With the wet ballots no longer readable, the revision committees will have to turn to the image captures of the individual ballots as these were inserted into the VCMs. This will take time, a long, long time.

The facts are clear. Soaking the ballots with water to render them unreadable is a delaying tactic. It will frustrate the bid of Marcos to determine the genuine outcome of the elections for Vice President in the soonest possible time. The Liberal Party has resorted to a crude ploy to force the manual recount to slow down to a crawl. Only Leni can possibly benefit from a delay. If the manual recount goes beyond 2022, as what Macalintal hinted at, then the whole process will become moot and academic.

With this scenario, the Filipino people will have to guard against further destabilization efforts of the Liberal Party in a desperate move to topple President Rodrigo Duterte and push Leni to the Presidency. We have also to pray that the Supreme Court, sitting as the Presidential Electoral Tribunal, will not allow these delaying tactics to succeed.

 

‘Wet’ is the name of the game in CamSur

The discovery of “wet” ballots from Camarines Sur municipalities isn’t just confined to the on-going manual recount of ballots for the disputed position of Vice President in the May 9, 2016 elections.

Just a while ago, I received information that similar patterns of tampering and cheating were also uncovered by the House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal in the election protest filed by former Rep. Luis Villafuerte against incumbent Rep. Gabby Bordado.

The HRET began the revision of the ballots for the town of Calabanga, Camarines Sur on Thursday (April 5, 2018). When the revisors opened the ballot boxes, they found the ballots wet and unreadable, the same as what was discovered in the Presidential Electoral Tribunal where the contested votes for Vice President are now being scrutinized.

Today, April 6, 2018, the revisors opened the ballot boxes for Naga City, the bailiwick of Leni Robredo, and found the ballots in the same condition: wet and unreadable. More than that, the revisors found cut grass inside the ballot boxes, a clear indication that these were opened by unauthorized persons and stuffed with it.

These ballot boxes from the third district of Camarines Sur will be dispatched to the PET upon the conclusion of the HRET manual recount for the protest of Villafuerte. These ballots will join what is now a procession of wet ballots from Camarines Sur.

The pattern is much too obvious to be attributed to a fluke of nature (rain water penetrating the ballot boxes). It can’t be coincidence. It is becoming clear that the soaking of the ballots was done systematically with one purpose in mind: to cover up the crime of cheating.

As if that wasn’t enough, the revisors found the ballots from the Naga City boxes NEATLY STACKED and ORGANIZED along with other paraphernalia. Everybody knows that ballots are inserted into the VCM and then dropped inside the boxes in random order, and finding them organized and stacked neatly is evidence that these have been tampered.

Interestingly, Bordado belonged to the Liberal Party. He was vice mayor of Naga City who decided to do battle with the veteran Villafuerte. It was a David versus Goliath match. But it appears Goliath was no match for the “well-oiled machinery” that Leni unleashed in Camarines Sur.

The evil deeds of the Liberal Party cheating machine didn’t take too long to be uncovered. Robredo’s lawyer, Atty. Romulo Macalintal, has a lot of explaining to do. Is wet the standard or norm for Camarines Sur balloting? This is a pattern, and cheating is written all over the place.

What “systematic decrease” of votes is Leni talking about?

Leni Robredo is becoming “praning”, apparently after tell-tale signs of the massive cheating in the May 9, 2016 elections for Vice President have emerged after just four days into the manual recount being conducted by the Supreme Court, sitting as the Presidential Electoral Tribunal.

On Thursday (April 5, 2018), Robredo’s lawyers filed a motion before the PET to consider 25% shading of the oval before a candidate’s name as sufficient to credit that vote for her, and not 50% as in the past. The timing for filing this motion is curious. It comes just after the camp of Bongbong Marcos raised the issue of pre-shaded ballots.

Could there be a connection between the issue of pre-shaded ballots and Leni’s motion on partial shading?

Keep in mind that Leni is from Camarines Sur, and if voters in her own province really rooted for her, they would have taken extra care in shading the oval across her name. I think that is only logical. I would imagine voters even doing drills in shading just to make sure not a single vote for Leni would be lost due to inadequate shading.

How big a percentage of the ballots were not shaded completely for Leni? If it’s a substantial number then there might be a link to the pre-shading issue. Pre-shading must have been done in such a hurry that the cheating personnel did a poor job in shading the oval across Leni’s name.

The PET should take this possibility into consideration. That Leni is “praning” is full of meaning. It could be her fear of the cheating being exposed in full view of the public is pushing her to the edge.

Now, here’s the beef: pre-shaded ballots for Leni

As the manual recount for the contested votes in Camarines Sur reached its third day yesterday (April 4, 2018), more evidence of the rampant cheating that took place in the May 9, 2016 elections have surfaced. This time, the revision committees that opened ballot boxes from the municipality of Baao, Camarines Sur discovered pre-shaded ballots — some torn in half indicating that these were excess or unused ballots — mixed with valid ballots. Aside from this, two clustered precinct ballot boxes were found wet, with the ballots badly damaged and the data contained no longer readable.

The pre-shading of ballots for President and Vice President — Mar Roxas for President and Leni Robredo for Vice President — is not exactly news. A former staff assistant for Mar Roxas accidentally mentioned to me that he delivered “ballots” to several tThe carpenterowns in Iloilo and Aklan a few days before election day. Of course, I didn’t press for details; I just pretended I didn’t catch it. What he did add was that mayoralty candidates in some towns complained when only one of the two got a share of the ballots. Certainly, these couldn’t be sample ballots. Why would such a chore be handled by a trusted aide, personally delivered? And now that there is evidence of pre-shaded ballots, what he told me now makes sense. The Liberal Party did distribute pre-shaded ballots to ensure a landslide victory for Mar and Leni in controlled areas.

This is getting to be more interesting, and revealing, of just how widespread the cheating that took place was.

The Liberal Party was really desperate to make Leni win, with Senator Franklin Drilon as number one among senatorial winners.

Robredo victory was a Plan B for Liberal Party to retake power

Former Comelec chairman Andy Bautista is now a fugitive from justice.

That’s because a warrant of arrest was issued against him by the Senate committee on banks, financial institutions and currencies for failure to appear before it to answer questions about his questionable deposits with Luzon Development Bank.

From the looks of it, Bautista, who is believed to have masterminded the massive election manipulations through the Vote Counting Machines on May 9, 2016, is not coming home to face the music.

With the discovery since Monday of glaring signs of tampering with the contested ballots in Camarines Sur in the electoral protest of former Senator Bongbong Marcos, Bautista knows he is headed to jail once he comes home.

andres-bautista-election-2016

Photo credit: Philippine Star

The cheating is his legacy to the Liberal Party. He made sure that Leni Robredo would win, by a hairline, against Marcos, and put her in the next line of succession to President Rodrigo Duterte. And just to put icing on the cake, Bautista also manipulated the results to place Senator Franklin Drilon as the topnotcher among the senatorial winners. It prepared the groundwork for Robredo assuming to the Presidency, and Drilon to become Vice President in the event Pres. Duterte is removed from office (however it would be accomplished.).

It was Plan B of the Liberal Party after it became certain that Mar Roxas would lose to Pres. Duterte. There was no way cheating could overcome the lead of Duterte over Roxas. The LP switched to Plan B to make sure Robredo would be in striking distance of the Palace.

The Senate committee should now seek the issuance of a freeze order on all deposits in the name of Bautista, not only with Luzon Development Bank, but with all other banks in the country.

At the very least, he should not be allowed to enjoy the fruits of his evil. This qualifies as one of the highest crimes a public official can commit — defrauding the elections for tons of bribe money.

The Commission on Elections (Comelec), for its part, should also wake up from its self-imposed slumber and issue clarifications on the issues that have erupted. For instance, Comelec should make a statement on the following:

  • Are the ballot boxes susceptible to water leaks, presuming the story spun by Atty. Romy Macalintal about a storm having gone through Camarines Sur is true?
  • Where were these ballot boxes stored? Who had access to them?
  • When the Presidential Election Tribunal directed that all ballot boxes be transmitted to the Supreme Court, doesn’t this include all the appurtenances like audit logs?

The camp of Robredo is now resorting to age-old squid tactics to cloud the issue and deflect the public attention from the emerging evidence of massive cheating. No time must be wasted by the PET, not even after four chairpersons of revision committees resigned on the third day of the counting.

This piece of news, by the way, was just given minor — very minor — treatment by the Philippine Daily Inquirer. It landed as a “Newsbrief” and buried deep inside its pages. PDI story on resignationIsn’t this development — four revision committees quitting — is big news. At the least, it should have landed on page one of the PDI, and statements obtained from the camps of Robredo and Marcos.

It happened just like that: they quit. That’s after they had to undergo a very thorough process of selecting them. What this means is that the number of revision committees that will continue the work will be short by four. That will translate to a slower manual recount.

Now, it doesn’t need a rocket scientist to figure out who would benefit from a delay in the recount.