It all began yesterday when the hashtag #BBMNotMyVP started trending on Twitter. We were wondering what happened, and it didn't take long before we found out that the Supreme Court, sitting as the Presidential Electoral Tribunal (PET), held a preliminary conference on the vice presidential poll protest of former Senator Bongbong Marcos and counter protest of Vice President Leni Robredo. (via CNNPhilippines.com)
What it's all about
If you can still recall, after the national elections last year, Marcos filed an electoral protest that seeks to nullify about a million votes from the Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) and to recount ballots from 27 areas in the country because of cheating allegations on Robredo's camp. He identified the areas of Iloilo, Negros Oriental, and Camarines Sur as the "pilot areas" for recount or areas that will best prove his party's allegations.
For this protest, Marcos was asked to pay a P66.2-million protest fee. He's paid the P30-million balance yesterday ahead of the July 14 deadline.
Robredo, on the other hand, filed a counter protest where she requested a recount of ballots in 13 provinces. Her pilot areas, on the other hand, are Sulu, Cotabato, and Capiz. The VP's camp argued that Marcos' protest "is based on general allegations and manufactured evidence" that will favor him.
For her counter protest, the VP was asked to pay a protest fee of P30-million. She has yet to pay the balance of P7.4-million before the deadline, which the PET approved to move instead of July 14. (via CNNPhilippines.com, Inquirer.net, Rappler.com)
What happened yesterday
The main goal of yesterday's preliminary conference, a closed-door meeting attended by eight judges (led by Supreme Court Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno, Marcos and Robredo's lawyers, and Bongbong Marcos) is to tackle and narrow down the issues raised by both parties. They are then asked to submit their comments five days after the conference. (via CNNPhilippines.com, GMANetwork.com)
- The recount.
According to Marcos' lawyer, Atty. George Garcia, the PET raised issues of limiting the witness per precinct to three and of the storage area of the election paraphernalia. He also said that the PET are looking into the possibility of calling in the Commision of Elections (COMELEC), since they're the ones in charge of and responsible for the elections. (via GMANetwork.com)
- The integrity of the 2016 national elections.
Robredo's party, through Atty. Maria Bernadette Sardillo, revealed that one of the issues raised was the integrity of the 2016 national elections. According to her, Associate Justice Marvic Leonen said that one can't just isolate the results for the position of the vice president from the other positions, since the results for the presidency and vice presidency were in one certificate of canvas—which means invalidating one would invalidate the others. (via CNNPhilippines.com)
What do you think of what's going on in the government right now, Candy Girls? Let's talk in the comments or via Twitter @candymagdotcom. We always love hearing from you. :)