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Palace: Time to heal, unite as a nation

Alexis Romero - The Philippine Star
Palace: Time to heal, unite as a nation
Acting presidential spokesman Martin Andanar yesterday said the conduct of this year’s polls was “a showcase of the strength of our democratic system and institutions.”
KJ Rosales

MANILA, Philippines — Malacañang called for unity and healing as it hailed what it described as “generally peaceful and orderly” elections last Monday.

Acting presidential spokesman Martin Andanar yesterday said the conduct of this year’s polls was “a showcase of the strength of our democratic system and institutions.”

“The Filipino people have spoken and now is the time to heal and unite as one nation and one people. To the winners, our advanced congratulations as you embark on new responsibilities and challenges of your office,” he said.

Andanar said the higher voter turnout was evidence of the growing political interest and maturity of our people.

“We congratulate everyone for their cooperation in ensuring the 2022 national and local elections are generally peaceful and orderly,” the Palace spokesman said.

While Andanar did not name any winner in his statement, President Duterte’s political adviser Jacinto Paras said presidential aspirant Ferdinand Marcos Jr. and his running mate Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio are poised to become the country’s next leaders. Both are holding commanding leads over their respective rivals.

COCs and ERs arrive at Senate

The Senate has started receiving certificates of canvass (COCs) and election returns (ERs) of votes cast for president and vice president.

Senate President Vicente Sotto III on Tuesday night received the COCs contained in ballot boxes from Malabon City. Yesterday, the chamber received the first overseas voting COCs and ERs from Cambodia and Vietnam.

The ballot boxes, including those that will be arriving in the coming days, will be secured inside the Senate building in Pasay City until Congress convenes in joint session as the National Board of Canvassers (NBOC) on May 23.

Sotto named Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon, Senate Majority Leader Juan Miguel Zubiri and Senators Pia Cayetano, Imee Marcos, Grace Poe and Francis Tolentino as members of the NBOC for the chamber. Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph Recto and Senators Sonny Angara and Cynthia Villar were designated as alternate members.

Threshold lowered

To speed up the proclamation of the winning candidates in Monday’s elections, the Commission on Elections (Comelec) has allowed the lowering of threshold of the canvassing system.

“We lowered the threshold to allow the proclamation and because the un-transmitted result will no longer affect the outcome of the elections,” Comelec Commissioner George Garcia said, adding that the transmitted results would still be counted and canvassed after the proclamation.

Acting Comelec spokesman John Rex Laudiangco explained that the local board of canvassers needs the commission’s approval prior to the lowering of the threshold as part of security measures.

Matching ERs

Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (PPCRV) chair Myla Villanueva said they would start the matching of physical and digital election returns today.

The PPCRV head said they would also release the results of the match starting Thursday, like they did in 2019. So far, Villanueva said there are no discrepancies being reported. In 2019, they recorded 99.995 percent match rate.

As of 12:40 p.m. yesterday, only 15,505 physical election returns were received by the PPCRV – 8,962 from Metro Manila and 6,543 were from Luzon. The number is equivalent to 14.39 percent of the total election returns.

As of 3:47 pm yesterday, the PPCRV’s server of the electronically transmitted results still has Marcos Jr. leading the presidential race with 31,086,149 votes, while Duterte-Carpio is leading the vice presidential race with 31,540,628 votes. –  Paolo Romero, Mayen Jaymalin, Ralph Edwin Villanueva

MARTIN ANDANAR

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