Tingting on poll sabotage raps: I'm not afraid

By Kathlyn dela Cruz, ABS-CBNnews.com

Posted at Mar 11 2015 04:13 PM | Updated as of Mar 12 2015 12:15 AM

MANILA - Former Tarlac Governor Margarita "Tingting" Cojuangco, aunt of President Benigno Aquino III, branded as "lies" the allegations that she committed electoral sabotage in the 2013 automated elections.

"The Comelec (Commission on Elections) can do what they want. I'm not afraid... I know that they're lies," Cojuangco said in an interview on ANC's "Beyond Politics."

Her former employee, Worthy Acosta, accused the camp of Cojuangco of using tampered ballots in a bid to discredit the May 2013 polls.

In his affidavit filed before the Comelec, Acosta claimed he was instructed by Cojuangco to travel to Baguio City upon the recommendation of former Biliran Rep. Glenn Chong, who lost in the polls, to prove election fraud by retrieving stored ballots.

Acosta said he was instructed by Chong to tamper the ballots to make it appear that losing congressional candidate Bernie Vergara was defrauded. Cojuangco's camp then allegedly used the tampered ballots for anti-2013 elections propaganda.

Retired Comelec chairperson Sixto Brillantes said people involved in the alleged operation can be charged with electoral sabotage.

DUBIOUS BACKGROUND

Cojuangco, however, is unfazed by the allegations against her.

She said she could not remember what exactly Acosta's position was when he was still her employee but said that he "has a very dubious background."

"But anyway, my lawyers are taking care of it. So I think I shouldn't say what I know or what I have in mind [at this point]," she said. "There is somebody behind him for sure."

According to Cojuangco, she should be the one filing charges against Brillantes for electoral fraud. "Nobody should charge me with anything because I should be the one charging Mr. Brillantes because he violated the automated election law."

She alleged that Brillantes took out the UV lamps that were supposed to certify the authenticity of the ballots. The source code also arrived only three days before the elections, when a review should have been conducted four months prior to the polls, she added.

She said they have "a lot" of evidence that can prove fraud in the May 2013 automated elections. "There was never a legitimate election," she said.

Cojuangco, wife of Jose "Peping" Cojuangco, the uncle of the President, ran as senator under the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) in 2013 but lost.

When asked if she feels that she should have won in the senatorial race, she said: "You know, when you enter in any contest, there are losers and there are winners."

"And if God did not mean for me to win, look at me now. Now I'm really opposition, and I'm bringing out issues that if I were a senator I may not be able to speak up... Maybe this is my role in life," Cojuangco said.