- The lawyers of Robredo belied reports she is losing 5,000 votes in the recount
- Macalintal said only 100 votes were not counted for not meeting the 50% threshold
- He also accused one of Marcos’ lawyers for allegedly trying to influence the recount proceeding
MANILA, Philippines – The lawyer of Vice President Leni Robredo, Atty. Romulo Macalintal, has denied reports his client has lots 5,000 votes in the ongoing manual recount.
Macalintal said only around 100 votes were not counted in favor of Robredo due the 50% threshold in shading ballots which is being observed by the Presidential Electoral Tribunal (PET).
He also pointed that the Commission on Election already issued a resolution, saying ballots with one-fourth shading should be valid for counting, which means even the 100 ‘lost’ votes could still be recovered.
“It should be Comelec that decides on the threshold for shading, and not PET, because it is Comelec that oversaw the conduct of the elections,” said Macalintal in an interview over DZMM.
The election lawyer also noted the intention of the voter is considered important, as cited in previous Supreme Court ruling. Macalintal said, “Did he intend to vote for the candidate or not? That is why SC rulings in these cases are in favor of the voter.”
Influencing the recount proceeding?
At the same time, Macalintal and his co-counsel, Atty. Maria Bernadette Sardillo, also slammed one of Marcos’ lawyers for allegedly trying to influence the manual recount process.
Macalintal said Atty. Joan Padilla went around the revision area “aggressively telling the PET Head Revisors to implement the 50-percent threshold percentage, and to post the PET Resolution in every corner or table in the revision area.”
The incident reportedly happened last April 13, after the PET ruled it will observe the 50 percent threshold, instead of 25 percent.
Instead of only observing the proceeding, Macalintal said Padilla “was also heard as informing the Head Revisors that she no longer wants the Revision Committees to check the votes of the parties vis-à-vis the Election Returns.”
The camp of VP Robredo has since filed a manifestation of grave concern before PET over Padilla’s action.