The Comelec First Division has dismissed the election protest filed by Romulo "Kid" Peña Jr. against Makati City Mayor Mar-len Abigail "Abby" Binay, daughter of former Vice President Jejomar Binay.
In its decision dated Sept. 20, the First Division found that Peña's protest contained discrepancies and was “insufficiency in form and content.”
The Comelec said the Peña camp submitted two versions of the protest on May 20, less than two weeks after the May 2016 polls: one version had 22 pages, the other, 24 pages.
Both versions “failed to indicate a detailed specification of the acts or omissions complained of showing the electoral frauds, anomalies or irregularities in the protested precincts,” the Comelec panel said.
It also noted that Peña failed to indicate the specific precincts where the errors in the scanning of the ballots allegedly took place.
Peña also failed cite specific details on the ballots allegedly rejected by the Precinct Count Optical Scan (PCOS) machines.
“The allegations that votes cast do not accurately reflect the election receipts, vote-buying, harassment and intimidation allegedly done by the Protestee [Binay], and vote-shaving should be considered as general statements as they are devoid of specific instances where these happened or how these took place. The use by the Protestant [Peña] of phrases like numerous instances, in some instances, in one instance, etc. reflects that these statements of irregularities are broad and general in description, which the law does not allow,” the First Division said in its order.
In a statement, lawyer Daniel Subido, legal counsel of Binay, said the mayor is grateful for the Comelec ruling and is determined to "restore the highest standard of service to the Makati citizens."
As of posting time, the camp of Peña has yet to answer phone calls made by GMA Online. — Veronica Pulumbarit/RSJ, GMA News