May 15, 2016 10:25 pm
by JAIME R. PILAPIL AND REINA TOLENTINO, THE MANILA TIMES
Vice presidential candidate Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. is now leading main rival Camarines Sur congresswoman Leni Robredo by 995,207 votes, according to official Certificates of Canvass (COC) gathered so far by the senator’s legal team.
Administration bet Robredo, however, said she is “sure” that she will emerge as the winner in the race for Vice President.
As of Saturday (May 14, 2016), 3:30 pm, Marcos had a total of 12,479,207 votes, compared with Robredo’s 11,484,092.
The figures are based on 102 out of 122 COCs, or 87.7 percent.
Controversy struck the May 9 polls after the camp of Marcos exposed the allegedly mysterious introduction of a new computer program script that changed the hash code in the transparency server of the Commission on Elections (Comelec), suspecting that election results were tampered with.
Fears that the vote had been manipulated were raised after Robredo of the Liberal Party suddenly overtook the almost 1 million vote lead of the Ilocano senator in the count conducted by the election watchdog PPCRV in less than five hours during which the nation of more than 100 million were mostly asleep.
The last lead of Marcos of 5,539 votes was posted at 2:59 a.m. of May 9. Marcos had 12,823,523 votes while the lawmaker from Bicol had 12,817,985.
A minute later, at 3 a.m., Robredo took the lead, with 14,876 more votes than those for Marcos.
Her numbers climbed further to 12,938,123, against Marcos’ 12,923,247.
These figures were based on the Comelec’s transparency server count monitored by the election watchdog and Catholic Church-based Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (PPCRV).
Since that time, Marcos never regained the lead based on the PPCRV quick count and Robredo began maintaining a 200,000-vote lead.
The Marcos camp on Sunday reminded the public that only completed COC will be the basis for the national canvassing of the votes for President and Vice President by the National Board of Canvassers (NBOC) to be convened by Congress.
The quick count of the PPCRV, it pointed out, is not the basis for proclaiming winners of the May 9 polls.
Also on Sunday, Marcos attended a Holy Mass at the Baclaran Church in Paranaque City (Metro Manila) together with his mother and former First Lady Imelda Marcos, wife Liza, and eldest son Sandro.
Reporters failed to interview him because the senator was mobbed by churchgoers who all tried to reach out to him.
Marcos said his camp does not believe anymore results being posted by PPCRV and that they will just wait for May 25 wherein the NBOC will start canvassing the votes from the presidential and vice presidential races in a joint session of Congress.
But Robredo was upbeat about making it as the next Vice President of the Philippines.
“Sigurado na po base sa numero ng Comelec pero siyempre hindi pa tayo pwede mag-claim kasi ang pwede lang mag-claim ‘yung Comelec. ‘Yung pinaka-purpose lang ng pagpakita namin ng numero, marami kasing nangangamba dahil napakalapit nung laban, marami sa aming supporters ung nangangamba [We are already sure based on the numbers from the Comelec but of course we cannot claim (victory yet) because the only one who can claim (it for us) is the Comelec. The purpose of the update was to appease our our supporters because a lot of them were anxious due to the tight race],” she told reporters in an interview when asked if she is sure of victory. - Full story on The Manila Times