MANILA - The camps of Vice President Leni Robredo and defeated vice presidential bet Ferdinand ''Bongbong'' Marcos Jr. on Monday both debunked a text message claiming that a recount of ballots for vice president has been scheduled.
A text message that spread over the weekend said a recount of ballots from four to five provinces will start before November ends and that a new vice president will be proclaimed by January 2017.
Robredo lawyer Georgina Hernandez told radio DZMM that the Presidential Electoral Tribunal (PET) has not issued a recount order in connection with the electoral protest of Marcos, who has claimed that “blatant” election fraud paved the way for Robredo's election.
"Mayroon pa pong mga proseso na dapat pagdaanan at hindi po totoo iyung mga kumakalat na text message," she said. (There is a process and the viral text messages are not true.)
Hernandez said the rumor may have been sparked by the underhanded hero's burial last week of Marcos' father, deposed president Ferdinand Marcos.
"Hindi rin po namin masasabi kung saan ito galing pero sa tingin natin talaga ay bunsod din [ito] ng naganap na biglaan, patago at palihim na paglibing kay dating pangulong Ferdinand Marcos,," she said.
"Siguro nagkaroon ng pagkabahala mula sa iba't ibang kampo. Siguro sinasamantala po ito ng ating mga kalaban."
(We cannot say for certain but we think it was caused by the sudden and underhanded burial of former president Ferdinand Marcos. It is possible that various camps were alarmed. Maybe our political opponents also took advantage of the situation.)
The Marcos camp, meanwhile, refuted the rumor but said it also surprised them.
"Nagulat po kami, wala po kasing katotohanan. Ang parang lumalabas pa yata ay hindi na magkakaroon ng bilangan tapos bigla na lang magde-desisyon at magpoproklama ng bagong vice president," said Marcos counsel, Atty. George Garcia.
(We were surprised too because it was not true. It even appeared a new vice president will just be proclaimed without a recount.)
"Hinding-hindi naman po kami papayag na hindi magkakaroon ng isang tama at lehitimong proseso. Siyempre, anuman po ang magiging desisyon dito, against o pabor sa amin, mahirap na magkakaroon ng duda."
(We will not condone the absence of a proper and legitimate process. Of course, whatever the decision may be, whether it's against or in favor of us, it will be difficult if it is ridden with doubt.)
Marcos lost to Robredo in the vice-presidential race by 263,000 votes. The PET has yet to schedule a hearing for his protest.