Leni, Bongbong urged to wait for official canvass

Evelyn Macairan (The Philippine Star) - May 16, 2016 - 10:00am

MANILA, Philippines - Vice presidential candidates Rep. Leni Robredo and Sen. Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. were advised to wait for the official proclamation of the National Board of Canvassers (NBOC) instead of claiming that they both won the vice presidential race.

Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (PPCRV) national chairperson Henrietta de Villa branded as “psywar” the early victory pronouncements of Robredo and Marcos.

Over the weekend, the camps of Marcos and Robredo reportedly made separate announcements of victory.

“That is their strategy or their psywar (psychological warfare). But if I am the one, I caution both parties from claiming victory until it is pronounced. Let us wait (for the official announcement of the NBOC), after all it would not be long,” said De Villa.

Robredo earlier said she is leading by 257,000 and even if she gets zero votes in the remaining nine towns, she would still win the vice presidential race.

Marcos, on the other hand, expressed optimism that he had won because of the support given to him by the Filipino voters based abroad. He reportedly got 176,669 votes from the overseas Filipino voters (OAV), while Robredo only received 89,935.

As of 2:45 p.m. yesterday, the PPCRV electronic board showed that Robredo had 14,022,843 votes compared to Marcos who garnered 13,803,797, or a difference of 219,046 votes.

At that time only results from 90,632 clustered precincts had been transmitted or 96.13 percent out of 92,509 local precincts and 1,767 precincts from the OAV.

De Villa said she does not know where both camps got their data. “I don’t want to say that they have the wrong computation. Maybe they might have some computation different from us but what I would say is that what we receive (from the Comelec transparency server) is where we base our computations.”

Vice presidential also-ran Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV also advised Robredo and Marcos to just wait for the NBOC to complete their work and proclaim the winner.

Trillanes said that the race between the two is too close to call.

“Ultimately it is during the national board of canvassers that we will see the truth because both parties can claim that they have won or one would claim that he has been cheated,” he said.

Trillanes said that he understood how the two candidates are both claiming victory since they have their respective monitoring and tally of the results coming in from the Comelec server.

“It is possible that based on their respective count, they are winning. But of course that all means nothing because it is not yet official,” he said.

Zero vote possible 

Meanwhile, the camp of Robredo claimed yesterday that it is possible for a candidate to get zero votes in a polling precinct, as proven when Marcos bagged all the votes in 18 precincts in last week’s polls.

Robredo’s lawyer Romulo Macalintal said that based on their tally, Marcos got all the votes in 18 clustered precincts.

“All the 6,828 or 100 percent of the votes (were) for Marcos and zero vote for Robredo, and other candidates. This only shows that having a zero vote, as claimed by Senator Marcos, is very much possible,” he told reporters at the canvassing center of the Commission on Elections at the Philippine International Convention Center in Pasay City.

The 18 precincts are Barangay Langil, Basilan (563); San Praxedes, Cagayan (63); New Era, Dasmariñas City (672); New Era, Dasmariñas City (714); Macupit Elementary School, Ilocos Norte (364); Pias-Gaang, Pias, Ilocos Norte (105); Apatut-Lubong, Pinili, Ilocos Norte (189); Puzol Elementary School, Pinili, Ilocos Norte (154); Sitio Nagtenga, Ilocos Norte (327); Bannawag, Anganadan, Isabela (306); Bagong Buhay, Palayan City, Nueva Ecija (325); Barangay Maligaya, Nueva Ecija (449); Barangay Maligaya, Nueva Ecija (346); Tagumpay Compound, San Jose, Rizal (576); Bilaan, Talipao, Sulu (420); Bilaan, Talipao, Sulu (394); Pantao, Talipao, Sulu (204); and New Era Elementary School, Tandang Sora, Quezon City (657).

Macalintal added that Robredo and other vice-presidential bets Sens. Alan Peter Cayetano, Gregorio Honasan and Francis Escudero did not get a single vote in the 18 precincts.

Last week, Marcos had insinuated cheating as he claimed that Robredo bagged all the votes in some poling precincts in Lanao del Sur, Cotabato City and other provinces in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.

Former Comelec chairman Sixto Brillantes, the lawyer of Marcos, assailed Robredo for claiming victory and urging the senator to concede in the vice presidential race based on a “small unofficial lead.”

In his tweet @ChairmanBrillantes, the former Comelec chief said  Robredo’s runningmate former interior secretary Mar Roxas, who lost more than 700,000 votes during the May 2010 elections, never conceded even after the official count by Congress.

“Now Robredo wants BBM (Bongbong Marcos) to concede over unofficial small lead. She could not be that presumptuous,” Brillantes said. – With Sheila Crisostomo, Perseus Echeminada, Marvin Sy

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