MANILA, Philippines - Senators Edgardo Angara and Loren Legarda should be removed from the Senate Electoral Tribunal (SET) because they benefited from electoral fraud along with Juan Miguel Zubiri in the May 2007 polls, losing senatorial bet Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III said.
In a Motion to Disqualify filed by his father and legal counsel, former Senator Aquilino “Nene” Pimentel, the younger Pimentel wants the SET to disqualify or remove from SET membership the two senators “not only for ethical reasons but for having benefited from electoral fraud” in the province of South Cotabato.
"Under the circumstances, they cannot be trusted to render a verdict that is based on the requirements of fairness, truth and justice," the losing senatorial bet said.
Pimentel claimed that Angara as a candidate for the Senate in the May 2007 elections was credited with 101,000 falsified votes in South Cotabato through manipulation of the Provincial Certificate of Canvass of Votes (PCOC, Serial Number 0000090) and the Statement of Votes by City/Municipality (SOVM, Serial Numbers 0000184 and 0000185) by Lilian Suan-Radam, then the Chairman of the Provincial Board of Canvassers of the province.
He said Radam also falsified the Provincial Certificate of Canvass of Votes (PCOC Serial No. 0000090) and the Statement of Votes by City/Municipality (SOVM Serial Numbers 0000184 and 0000185) to increase the votes in the province of South Cotabato of Loren Legarda, then a candidate for senator in the 2007 elections, by 43,000 fictitious votes.
Pimentel asserted that Juan Miguel Zubiri likewise benefited from the fraudulent acts of Radam, with a total of 77,000 votes added to his name.
Pimentel said Radam submitted the allegedly fraudulent tallies of Angara, Legarda and Zubiri to the National Board of Canvassers at the PICC, Pasay City where these were discovered at the canvassing of the senatorial votes sometime on May 24, 2007.
The alleged case of electoral sabotage to favor Angara, Legarda and Zubiri are now the subject of three separate criminal cases pending before the Pasay RTC, Br. 114 of Pasay City.
Pimentel argued that “it would be well-nigh impossible for Senators Angara and Legarda to vote without bias in the protest that targets their bosom friend and co-beneficiary Juan Miguel Zubiri for the blatant cheating committed by Radam, the then Chair of the Provincial Board of Canvassers of South Cotabato in the May 2007 elections.”