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Leni must resign, now

The on-going manual recount for the Vice Presidential race in the first pilot province of Camarines Sur has established a trend: A steady and consistent decline in the number of votes credited to Leni Robredo in her home province.

leni robredo credit inquirer nino jesus orbeta

Photo credit: Philippine Daily Inquirer

As reported yesterday by Atty. Glenn Chong on his Facebook wall, the teams of revisors who had opened ballot boxes from just 500 clustered precincts have already nullified an estimated 21,000 votes counted in her favor.

Most probably, these involved inadequately shaded ovals beside her name for failure to meet the 50% shading threshold as required by a Comelec resolution promulgated in March 2010 for purposes of manual recount.

The Supreme Court has ruled that 25% shading which apparently is what was found in thousands of ballots does not count for a valid vote. Robredo’s lawyers have filed a motion for reconsideration.

Slowly, but surely, her lead of 263,475 votes over former Senator Bongbong Marcos is being whittled — by 21,000 after only 500 of 2100 clustered precincts in Camarines Sur — and the pattern, and trend, will only speed up in the weeks ahead.

The lead of 263,475 was a rabbit-out-of-the-hat trick pulled off by the Comelec then headed by disgraced Chairman Andy Bautista. It was a hairline margin by any standards, and is now getting thinner and thinner.

If Robredo’s integrity is still intact, as she insists it does, she should now resign. Every week that goes by, and as more evidence of fraud are uncovered, the image of Robredo is growing more rotten. She is desecrating the memory of her husband by allowing herself to be part of this charade put up by the Liberal Party.

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Leni loses 21K votes after just 3 weeks

Leni votes going down

Photo credit: ATTY. GLENN CHONG FACEBOOK WALL

 

The slide is gaining momentum.

After just three weeks, and 500 clustered precincts, Vice President Leni Robredo has lost an estimated 21,000 votes in the on-going manual recount for the Vice Presidential race at the Supreme Court which is sitting as the Presidential Electoral Tribunal.

This was reported today, May 2, 2018, by Atty. Glenn Chong, citing information from unnamed revisors, in his Facebook wall.

At the end of three weeks, the lead of Robredo over former Senator Bongbong Marcos has gone down to 242,000 votes. Robredo was proclaimed the victor in the Vice Presidential race for the May 9, 2016 elections with a lead of 263,473 votes.

There are still 1,300 clustered precinct ballot boxes to be opened and scrutinized for Camarines Sur and another 4,000 clustered precincts from Negros Oriental and Iloilo provinces which Marcos had identified as pilot provinces where massive electoral fraud had allegedly taken place.

Atty. Chong said that at the rate the votes of Robredo are being reduced, her lead could go down to 20,000 votes once all the clustered precincts from the three pilot provinces have been revised.

If it does go down to 20,000 votes, then Marcos will have proven his point that rampant cheating had taken place and thereby pave the way for more provinces being scrutinized for more electoral fraud.

This early, the fraud in Robredo’s victory is already very clear to most Filipinos who are closely monitoring the on-going manual recount. There are already calls for her to resign in the same manner as Senator Migz Zubiri when a recount into the protest of now Senate President Koko Pimentel became clear that the latter was the winner.

This time, it’s not just water, but chemicals

The evidence of massive cheating in Camarines Sur is growing, and all indications point to an organized effort to stall the manual recount being undertaken by the Supreme Court, sitting as the Presidential Electoral Tribunal, and prevent the unseating of Leni Robredo as Vice President in the near-term.

This surfaced last week when revisors discovered more wet ballots from the towns of Canaman ang Garchitorena in Robredo’s home province. This time, however, the ballots were not soaked in water; these were found to be powdery and smelly, and nothing could be read anymore.

The Philippine Star published this report in its April 30, 2018 edition. Here’s the full report. “PET finds ballots soaked in chemicals, jumbled voters’ receipts.”

ballot box design

Leni won by “systematic cheating”

It is now a downhill ride for Leni Robredo towards oblivion. The “systematic cheating” that propelled her to a hairline victory over former Senator Bongbong Marcos in the May 9, 2016 elections is now being uncovered in the ongoing manual recount before the Presidential Electoral Tribunal (PET). What she has described as “systematic decreasing” of her votes in her motion asking the PET to apply the 25% threshold is merely reversing the outcome of the cheating. She is now becoming the victim of her own — and the Liberal Party’s — cheating machinery.

leni robredo credit inquirer nino jesus orbeta

Photo credit: Philippine Daily Inquirer

Yesterday (April 20, 2018), a debate broke out on my Facebook wall over a report that Leni has already lost as much as 5.000 votes in the first two weeks of the manual recount. Two rabid supporters of Robredo joined the thread and claimed this report about the 5,000 votes was “fake news”. Now that is amusing, because at least two national newspapers quoted insiders at the PET as the source of this information. And Leni herself used the term “systematic decrease” to describe what is happening.

The PET denied her motion. She has appealed. By the way she sounds now, it’s as if her survival depends on persuading the PET to allow the 25% shading to be counted as valid.

Of course, the issue about shading isn’t the only factor that will lead to Leni’s defeat. Already, evidence on the large-scale cheating have surfaced: ballots being soaked in water, tampered ballot boxes, etc. This is just for Camarines Sur. Marcos has also asked the PET to do a manual recount for Iloilo and Negros Oriental. With her narrow margin of 263,000 votes — a really thin hairline difference — Leni could find herself in the loser’s box once the PET is done with these three provinces.

There is a lesson here: cheating does not work. As one friend remarked on Facebook: “Bad karma is real”. Leni is slowly being tortured by karma.

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.

Robredo’s lie exposed: There is no Comelec resolution allowing 25% shading

Where on earth did Leni Robredo get the idea that 25% shading of the oval constitutes a valid vote?

Robredo, through her lawyers, appealed to the Supreme Court, sitting as the Presidential Electoral Tribunal, to reconsider its ruling to annul votes counted for her if the shading on the oval across her name failed to meet the 50% threshold, which was set by Comelec itself for the May 10, 2010 elections through Resolution No. 8804 promulgated on March 22, 2010.

Did the Comelec ever entertain the idea of partial shading below 50%? In Resolution No. 10113 promulgated on May 3, 2016, the Comelec stated expressly that: “The intent of the voters is expressing by fully shading the oval beside the name of the candidate. This is consistent with the instruction provided on the face of the ballot on how to vote.” The photo below shows particular section on the appreciation of ballots:

 

Comelec Resolution Shading Ballots

There is no Comelec Resolution or guideline allowing 25% shading as valid vote. This is what Comelec Resolution No. 10113 promulgated on May 3, 2016 states.

The PET rightly turned down the motion of Robredo to reduce the threshold of the shading to 25%. An estimated 5,000 votes in favor of Robredo have been nullified during the first two weeks of the manual recount as a result of the PET’s ruling that the threshold level should be 50% as stipulated in Resolution No. 8804 dated March 22, 2010 (See RULE 15, Section 6, paragraph “l” shown below).

Screenshot 2018-04-19 14.36.44

Robredo’s lawyer anchor their claim that Comelec allowed a 25% threshold of shading in Minute Resolution No. 16-600 adopted by the Comelec En Banc on September 6, 2016, or four months after the conduct of the elections. What does this resolution say? This resolution was adopted AFTER Senator Bongbong Marcos had already filed his Electoral Protest at this time based on massive cheating. What it did was “adopt and confirm” the memorandum dated September 6, 2016 — submitted on the same day — by Commissioner Luie Tito F. Guia, Oversight Commissioner for the Random Manual Audit. It had no force of law.

Letter to PET

And it’s worthwhile examining this memorandum of Commissioner Guia submitted on September 6, 2016, and subsequently adopted and confirmed by the Commission En Banc. Commissioner Guia acknowledged that Comelec guidelines require that voters shade the oval FULLY, but added that the system was designed to read oval shading of “about 25%” as a valid vote. What is the basis of this? It was Smartmatic that did this without authority from the Comelec on Guia’s flimsy excuse that this guaranteed the right to suffrage of voters is not impaired.

Question: Can Smartmatic override the law? Apparently no, which is the reason why the Supreme Court rejected Robredo’s motion to reconsider those votes that were nullified for failure to meet the 50% threshold.

Now these documents deserve deeper investigation. Was this part of the grand cheating scheme of the Liberal Party as carried out by then Comelec Chairman Andres Bautista? For me, it is. We have to keep in mind the elections were over and done, and all that remained to be done was a manual recount of the ballots. Bautista changed the rules of the game after the final horn had sounded, obviously to make sure insufficiently shaded ballots for Robredo would be counted in her favor.

 

Supreme Court rules: De Lima’s arrest legal

The issue of legality over the arrest of former DOJ Secretary and Senator Leila de Lima has finally been settled by the Supreme Court when it dismissed her motion for reconsideration last Tuesday, April 17, 2018. It means De Lima can no longer play the card of being a victim of persecution (the way she abused her own power when she was DOJ Secretary). She will now have to face the charges against her in a full-blown trial.

Leila de Lima

Photo credit: Jansen Romero/Manila Bulletin

Indeed, even just the frequent visits of De Lima to the National Bilibid Prisons where she partied with convicted drug lords should have been enough to jail her. There was no justification for such closeness with hardened criminals. It lends credence to the allegations that she collected money from the drug lords, thereby making her a party to the illegal drugs trade.

I am appalled the Liberal Party politicians found nothing wrong with such behavior. Well, I guess rubbing elbows with criminals was the norm during their stay in power. The Supreme Court ruling makes De Lima no different from other arrested individuals facing trial, and it’s time the trial courts order her transfer to an ordinary jail.

We must keep in mind that the charges filed against De Lima aren’t political in nature. These involve illegal drugs. She must be incarcerated in the Muntinlupa City jail where other persons facing the same cases are detained. It’s time she doesn’t get special treatment.