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Bongbong Marcos urges PET to junk Robredo’s defense in poll protest 


Former Senator Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. has asked the Supreme Court, sitting as the Presidential Electoral Tribunal, not to accept the defense of Vice President Leni Robredo in his bid to unseat her. 

Marcos said in a motion that Robredo filed her counter protest on August 15, or three days beyond the 10-day deadline set by the PET.

The motion said Robredo admitted in her response that she received the summons and protest on August 2, thus she should have filed her comment on or before August 12. 

"As a consequence of...late filing, protestee Robredo's Verified Answer with Special and Affirmative Defenses and Counter-Protest should be stricken off and /or expunged from the records of this case for blatantly violating the mandate of Rule 23 and 24 of the 2010 PET Rules," the motion stated. 

The motion was filed Sept. 9 but was released to the media on Tuesday.

In her response, Robredo assailed Marcos' claims that cheating operations were made to ensure her victory in the May 9 poll. 

Included in Marcos’ protest is a request for annulment of the results of elections in the provinces of Lanao del Sur, Maguindanao and Basilan.

The Vice President shrugged off the allegations, saying these are "mere series of wild accusations, guesses, and surmises which renders it miserably wanting in sufficiency both in form and substance."

“However, Marcos’ protest itself reveals the weakness of his position because he merely cited four municipalities in Lanao del Sur; one  municipality in Maguindanao and four (municipalities in Basilan or a total of only 9 areas or a measly 10 percent of the 88 municipalities and cities of these three provinces to have been allegedly affected by his apparently baseless and frivolous allegations of frauds and irregularities in these areas,” Robredo said.

Robredo also belied Marcos’ claim that the changes in the transparency server changed the results of the election and the existence of an alleged queue server.

"The changing of the source code for the Comelec’s transparency server was not a fraudulent act or irregularity that affected the results of the May 2016 elections for Vice President. The Comelec already explained that the source code changes did not affect the data collected by the transparency server,” Robredo said. 

She added that she was proclaimed Vice President by Congress -acting as the National Board of Canvassers (NBOC)-based on the data transmitted by the canvassing laptops of the various provincial boards of canvassers that elected their own representatives in Congress.  

Robredo said the review of source code was made by the Commission on Elections with due notice and presence of political parties. 

The electoral protest was raffled off to Associate Justice Alfredo Benjamin Caguioa, who is also handling the consolidated petitions seeking to block the burial of Marcos' father, former President Ferdinand Marcos, at the Libingan ng mga Bayani. — RSJ, GMA News