MANILA, Philippines – The camp of defeated vice presidential candidate Ferdinand Marcos Jr filed a manifestation letter urging the Supreme Court (SC) to act on the Commission on Elections’ (Comelec) alleged stripping of vote counting machines (VCMs) and reported harassment of witnesses for the electoral protest against Vice President Leni Robredo.
“Since the [SC] has the jurisdiction over the protest, might as well inform the tribunal of the Comelec’s excessive action and disturbing inaction of all the please to preserve and safeguard all ballot boxes,” lawyer Vic Rodriguez told reporters on Monday, August 15.
He added that they hope their manifestation to the SC, sitting as the Presidential Electoral Tribunal, could prompt the Comelec to act on their inquiry. (READ: Marcos to Comelec: Why ‘strip’ VCMs despite SC protection order?)
Last Thursday, August 11, the Marcos camp questioned the Comelec for the stripping activity it has started based on a resolution signed on July 12 – the same day the SC signed the order to protect all election paraphernalia related to Marcos’ election protest.
Starting July 16, Marcos’ legal team claimed, VCMs used during the May elections have been “stripped” or disabled.
The camp said that all materials used during the last elections are under the jurisdiction of the PET.
Aside from the stripping, Rodriguez also said that they are requesting for an action on the reported harassment of their witnesses.
“We were informed of that method employed by the group of Daang Matuwid but our legal team are also gathering those witnesses approached by the Daang Matuwid group so that they will recant their previous testimonies,” Rodriguez said.
Robredo was the vice presidential candidate of the Daang Matuwid coalition, led by the Liberal Party. – Rappler.com