MANILA, Philippines – Sandro Marcos, the son of vice presidential candidate Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr, took to social media on Tuesday, May 10, to explain his actions during election day.
After drawing flak online for a May 9 tweet that pointed out perceived inconsistencies in the vote counting process, Sandro explained on Facebook:
"With regard to my tweet last night, it was done out of anger and frustration against the electoral process. The reason why they were deleted was someone decided to report them. I apologized on Twitter and am apologizing here for saying something so stupid. I know when I make mistakes and am more than happy to admit it. I was not initiating a personal attack, unlike others who responded."
On the night of the elections, Sandro sent out a tweet saying, "The total votes for president are not the same total for vice president." The tweet had the hashtag "#DayaangMatuwid" (dayaan meaning cheating), a play on the Liberal Party (LP) tagline "Daang Matuwid" (Straight Path).
Sandro's tweet is no longer in his account, and he explained in a later tweet that he did not delete it and he made the post out of anger and frustration.
Didn't delete my tweet, wouldn't be saying this otherwisefrustration and anger get the best of us. I guess tomorrow nalang makita — Sandro Marcos (@sandromarcos7) May 9, 2016
Soon after his tweet, Aika Robredo, the daughter of LP vice presidential bet Leni Robredo, tweeted a photo that said, "Walang #DayaangMatuwid. Ang mayroon lang ay #ProgresiBongMandaramBong." (There is no righteous cheating. There is only a progressive plunderer.)
Aika's tweet was not a direct reply to Sandro's.
Aside from the photo, Aika also said, "Never again!!!" in reference to the martial law era under former president Ferdinand Marcos, Sandro's grandfather. "LABAN LENI. Ang laban ni Leni ay laban nating lahat." (FIGHT, LENI. Leni's battle is everyone's battle.)
Never again!!! LABAN LENI. Ang laban ni Leni ay laban nating lahat #LabanLeni pic.twitter.com/cnEGcv8gLZ — Aika Robredo (@aikarobredo) May 9, 2016
Leni and Bongbong are in a tight race, with the Camarines Sur representative leading with 13,740,668 votes compared to the senator's 13,511,082 as of 7:55 pm on Tuesday.
Sandro also drew criticism for shading two circles for president on his ballot, causing his vote for the position to be invalid.
He asked for a replacement ballot but the Board of Election Inspectors told him that they cannot hand out replacements unless the mistake was theirs.
On Facebook, Sandro said: "Yes, I shaded two presidents, it was an honest error on my part. I was a first time voter and extremely nervous. I voted for [Rodrigo] Duterte as president, and saw the number 4 right after, so shaded that as it was my dad's number. I ended up shading [Grace] Poe's name instead of my dad's, so my presidential vote didn't count. Once again, it was an error on my part, and I think people need to relax a little bit, we all make errors now and then. At least my VP vote was right."
A social media user who commented on the post asked Sandro why he didn't vote for his dad's standard-bearer, Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago.
Marcos' son said Santiago was his first choice, but he made a last-minute switch to Duterte.
"Everybody is entitled to their own political opinion," he added.
Sandro ended his statement saying: "The fight still continues, and the events that came after the 'glitch' of the vote counting when my dad started going down, are questionable at best. Nevertheless, we carry on as best as we can and seek the truth on that part."