MANILA - Vice President Leni Robredo felt relieved that the Presidential Electoral Tribunal (PET) granted their request to release the committee report on the initial recount of votes in the electoral protest filed by vice-presidential candidate Ferdinand Bongbong Marcos, Jr.
She, however, expressed frustration the PET did not grant their ultimate goal, which is the outright dismissal of the protest based on Rule 65 of the PET, which states that if there is no substantial recovery in the pilot provinces, the protest may be dismissed.
“Relieved ako because of that. Pero frustrated na hindi pa rin na-dismiss kasi ang paniniwala talaga namin, there is no other way but to dismiss this,” Robredo said in a press conference Tuesday.
(I'm relieved because of that PET order. But I'm also frustrated the electoral protest was not dismissed because we believe there is no other way but to dismiss this.)
The Robredo camp earlier urged the tribunal to junk the electoral protest, claiming that the Vice President’s lead even grew by 15,000 votes after the initial recount.
The PET ordered the camps of former Senator Marcos and Robredo to comment on the preliminary appreciation report on the revision, recount and re-appreciation of ballots from the three pilot provinces of Camarines Sur, Negros Oriental and Iloilo. Both parties must comment on the report within 20 days.
The Vice President also took a dig over Marcos' repeated claims that he was robbed of the vice presidency.
The son of the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos claimed "massive cheating" in his loss to Robredo in the 2016 elections by some 260,000 votes, one of the narrowest in recent history, which she denied.
“Parang nakakatawa naman na siya ang ang nagsasabi noon. Kasi between the two of us parang 'di ata ako ang may ugaling mag-rob,” Robredo said.
(It seems laughable that he said that. I'm not the one who has a habit of robbing.)
Robredo also reiterated that there should be no need for Marcos to look into other provinces such as Lanao del Sur, Basilan, and Maguindanao, based on Rule 65.
“Ilang panalo pa ang kailangan para maniwala siya na hindi siya ang nanalo?” Robredo said.
(How many more wins should I get to convince him he did not win the vice presidential race?)