MANILA - Some unused and excess ballots for the 2016 national elections were pre-shaded in favor of Vice President Leni Robredo, the camp of former senator Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos, Jr. claimed Wednesday.
Marcos lawyer Vic Rodriguez made the statement during the third day of the manual recount that that their camp had sought to contest Robredo's victory in the 2016 vice presidential race.
The allegedly pre-shaded ballots were from Baao town in Robredo's home province, Camarines Sur, Rodriguez said in a text message to ABS-CBN News.
Marcos, 60, had claimed that alleged "massive cheating" made him lose to Robredo by some 260,000 votes in the closest vice presidential race in recent memory.
He said on the first day of the vote recount that some ballots from Camarines Sur were doused recently while several audit logs were missing.
Robredo's lawyer, Romulo Macalintal, said the logs did not contain a tally of votes, which is the subject of the recount, thus making their disappearance a "technical defect" that "can never affect the genuineness and accuracy of the count."
Macalintal added that ballots in previous elections were often damaged by typhoons and floods, but this should not be a cause for concern because the automated poll system stores back-up ballot images.
The lawyer told ABS-CBN News that the Vice President's camp would look into Marcos' latest allegation about pre-shaded ballots, but added, "Baka fake news na naman 'yan."
(That may be fake news again.)
Victory in Marcos' poll protest would cement his family's remarkable political comeback, 31 years after a "People Power" revolution saw millions of people take to the streets to end his father's 20-year rule.
With a report from Johnson Manabat, ABS-CBN News