In a resolution released on April 4, De Lima said the SET granted Tolentino’s motion withdrawing his electoral protest against the former justice secretary, thereby closing and terminating the entire electoral protest he filed in June 2016.
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It’s final: Francis Tolentino lost to Leila De Lima
Christina Mendez (The Philippine Star) - April 12, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The Senate Electoral Tribunal (SET) has dismissed the electoral protest filed by senatorial candidate Francis Tolentino against Sen. Leila de Lima as it released the results of the recount of contested ballots in pilot precincts.

In a resolution released on April 4, De Lima said the SET granted Tolentino’s motion withdrawing his electoral protest against the former justice secretary, thereby closing and terminating the entire electoral protest he filed in June 2016.

The SET granted De Lima’s motion to make public the results of the revision and appreciation of recount proceedings covering 319,228 ballots from 654 clustered precincts that were earlier examined by the tribunal. 

De Lima won over Tolentino by a margin of 1.33 million votes.

“The Tribunal, in the exercise of its discretion, opted to release the results of revision and appreciation in the pilot precincts as these proceedings had already been completed,” the resolution read. 

The court confirmed that the results of the initial determination of the concluded revision of pilot precincts did not show any proof of alleged irregularities or fraud in the 2016 polls that purportedly led to the defeat of Tolentino in the elections. 

“The results negated his allegations that pre-loaded SD cards were used or that his votes were not counted,” the SET noted. 

“After conducting the barcode and vote matching proceedings on 532 clustered precincts, it was confirmed that the barcodes of the actual paper ballots correspond to the barcodes of the picture images, and that ‘the votes’ appearing on the actual ballots and picture images were the votes that were counted by the VCMs,” it added.

The tally of votes covering 319,228 ballots from 654 precincts during revision and appreciation even resulted in an increase of 895 votes for De Lima and only 702 for Tolentino, or a net gain of 193 votes in De Lima’s favor. 

In the appreciation proceedings, the SET noted that votes showing the voters’ clear intention – although these failed to comply with the 50 percent shading threshold set by the tribunal – were counted as long as they do not have any unnecessary markings.

Tolentino had claimed that fraud and irregularities caused his defeat in the 2016 elections.

FRANCIS TOLENTINO LEILA DE LIMA SENATE ELECTORAL TRIBUNAL
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