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PET denies Marcos appeal for technical exam of poll records from 3 ARMM provinces

The Supreme Court (SC), sitting as the Presidential Electoral Tribunal (PET), has denied anew the appeal of former Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. to allow the technical examination of voters’ records from three provinces in Mindanao in connection with his poll protest against Vice President Leni Robredo.

Denied for lack of merit was Marcos’ motion for partial reconsideration to the PET’s August 29 resolution, according to the PET resolution dated November 7.

This means no technical examination can be conducted on the voters' signatures in each of the 2,756 clustered precincts in Lanao del Sur, Maguindanao and Basilan, the results of which Marcos wanted to be annulled, until the termination of the recount of ballots from Camarines Sur, Iloilo and Negros Oriental.

Marcos earlier designated Camarines Sur, Iloilo, and Negros Oriental as his three pilot provinces which he claims would best exemplify the frauds and irregularities alleged in his protest.

The former senator had asked for a technical examination in three Mindanao provinces allegedly because of the existence of fake voters.

He said the revisors need to examine each and every signature in the voter’s list to make sure that the person who cast his vote was the actual voter and not someone else.

Robredo opposed Marcos’ motion, saying this will violate the PET rule that only three areas could be designated as pilot provinces for the recount.

With the denial of Marcos’ motion for technical examination, Robredo’s camp said Marcos has to content himself with the results of the recount of ballots from the three pilot provinces which will be the basis of the PET to determine if it will proceed with the protest of Marcos from other provinces or it will dismiss the protest for lack of merit.

“We are highly confident that after such recount the PET will have all the valid grounds and reasons to dismiss Marcos’ protest. For in the hundreds of election protest cases filed involving the 2010, 2013 and the 2016 automated elections, not a single election protest has been won by any protestant on the basis of a recount of the ballots,” said Romulo Macalintal, lead counsel of Robredo.

GMA News Online is still trying to get a response from Marcos’ camp.

Marcos lost to Robredo by just 263,473 votes in the May 2016 election which the former senator claimed was marred by fraud. —ALG, GMA News