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Panlilio appeals decision proclaiming rival as Pampanga governor

February 17, 2010 6:48pm

Tags: COMELEC , Pampanga
Ousted Pampanga Governor Ed Panlilio on Wednesday asked the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to reconsider a decision that proclaimed his political rival, former provincial board member Lilia Pineda, as the winner in the 2007 gubernatorial race.

In his motion for reconsideration, Panlilio , through lawyer Sixto Brillantes, asserted that the poll body’s second division “rushed" the proceedings for the electoral protest.

"It was under such dire circumstances that protestee was practically compelled to participate in a rushed and hurried revision of ballot proceedings, where all attempts of the protestee to plead and beg for fairness, reasonableness, and adoption of normal processes were brushed aside by the second division," he said in the motion.

He said that the poll body should have allotted enough time to properly examine the ballots, which were supposedly "misappreciated."

Pineda lost to Panlilio in 2007 by a margin of 1,147 votes and accused the winning politician-priest of cheating and initiated recount proceedings against him with the Comelec.

But last week, the poll body second division said Pineda got 190,729 votes while Panlilio got 188,718 votes, a margin of 2,011.

Commissioner Lucenito Tagle, in his concurring opinion, said that Pineda won by only 356 votes. (See: Panlilio ousted as Pampanga governor; who’s next in line?)

However, Brillantes said that Panlilio is asking the poll body for "fairness."

"His constant fear and apprehension is that the second division, its biased and partiality most perceived, may opt to extend more favor to the protestant - in the form of a grant of a premature and obviously ill-prepared motion for execution pending the motion for reconsideration," he said.

He cited the case of Panlilio’s fellow Liberal Party governors Jonjon Mendoza of Bulacan and Grace Padaca of Isabela.

The LP had earlier said that this was a clear case of vendetta politics against the three governors. The poll body has denied the accusation.

Mendoza was unseated after his Partido del Pilar coalesced with the LP for the 2010 polls.

On the other hand, both Padaca and Panlilio have sworn support for LP standard bearer Sen. Benigno Simeon “Noynoy" Aquino III in the May elections.

Brillantes thus warned the second division not to implement the ruling to prevent the public from bashing them.

"Such act would be the most manifest and most glaring proof that the second division is indeed most partial and most biased in favor of the moneyed protestant," he said.

Pineda is the wife of businessman Rodolfo “Bong" Pineda, a well-known financier and staunch ally of President Arroyo.

Earlier, Panlilio said that he is confident that Supreme Court would overturn the decision should the Comelec en banc fails to do so.

"Ganun ang paniniwala namin ever since, kami ang panalo by a slim margin (We have always believed that we are the winners, although be a slim margin)," he said. - GMANews.TV
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Tags: COMELEC , Pampanga