The lawyer of former senator Bongbong Marcos is accusing the camp of Vice President Leni Robredo of delaying the election protest proceedings after the latter sought clarification from the tribunal about its order that she pay for her protest.
The Supreme Court, sitting as the Presidential Electoral Tribunal, directed Marcos and Robredo to shell out P66.02 million and P15.44 million respectively for their separate election protests.
On Monday, Marcos paid P36.023 million as the first installment of his payment.
Robredo, through her lawyer Atty. Romulo Macalintal, however, sought clarification from the High Court, arguing that Marcos should pay in full first because he filed the election protest and theirs was a counter-protest.
Macalintal also said Marcos should pay a total of P185 million because his protest has a first cause of action that includes all 92,000 clustered precincts.
However, Marcos' lawyer, Atty. Vic Rodriguez, believes the motion is another delaying tactic of the Robredo camp.
"If you would check on the records of this entire election protest, napakarami nilang finile na unnecessary motions, which to our mind—it is our position and humble submission—the only intent is to delay the already very slow pace of this election protest," Rodriguez said in a phone interview with ANC's Headstart.
Rodriguez asserted that Macalintal's argument that they are only to pay after Marcos' protest is finished had long been decided by the Tribunal, which ruled that "the election protest filed by Senator Marcos is sufficient in form and substance."
Rodriguez also said the other camp is "making the search for truth very, very expensive" by insisting that they pay P185 million.
The Marcos camp will now move for the dismissal of Robredo's counter-protest after they failed to meet the High Court's Monday deadline for the payment.
"We have complied, the election protest will continue, and we will move for the dismissal of the counter-protest of Mrs. Leni Robredo. In that way, so that it will run its natural course, unimpeded with unnecessary delays being filed by the protestee," said Rodriguez.
Macalintal argued, however, that they are not delaying the protest by pointing out the "defects" in Marcos' protest.
"The problem with Mr. Marcos’ protest is that he had presented a very weak protest. There were so many defects in the protest and siyempre (of course) as lawyers, we had to point out these defects," he said.
He also asserted that by alleging that they are delaying the process, the Marcos camp is "insulting" the Tribunal and its integrity and competence because the court should know this if it's true and they should be held in contempt.