Despite the assertions of Sen. Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos that he was cheated by the administration to favor its candidate Camarines Sur Rep. Leni Robredo, the Robredo camp declared her victory after a Mass at Ateneo De Manila University.
Robredo’s head for policy making, Boyet Dy stressed, made the Congresswoman’s lead over Marcos indisputable. He said as of 2 p.m. last May 15 the Commission on Elections (Comelec) accounted for 99.51 percent of the Certificates of Canvass.
“It is very clear that Sen. Marcos can no longer overtake the votes for Congresswoman Robredo. The numbers don’t lie,” he said.
He noted that Robredo will still be leading even with the remaining votes to be counted, including the Overseas Absentee Voters and the Local Absentee Voters.
“For now, no one can stop Leni Robredo.
She is the next vice-president of the country,” said Dy.
Robredo thanked her supporters for believing in her and vowed to treat them as “partners” in serving the country.
“I urge you, let us not engage in bickering because we have already won. It’s now time to move on for the country,” Robredo told supporters.
Robredo was the running mate of former Interior and Local Government Sec. Mar Roxas who placed second in the presidential race.
The Congresswoman said her victory would not be possible without the help of her supporters. “This is truly a people’s campaign,” she said.
Earlier, Marcos questioned Robredo’s surge in the canvassing and claimed to have received reports that the results were changed due to the tweaking of a computer command. He claimed that Robredo overtook him because of the change in the code.
The Comelec is yet to act on the challenge of an IT expert to disprove allegations of irregularity in the May 9 elections. Marcos and hundreds of his supporters offered a mass for truth and integrity at the Baclaran Church on Church last May 15.
Lawyer Glenn Chong of the advocacy group Automated Elections System (AES) Watch dared Comelec to allow independent IT experts to examine its central database to prove there was no cheating in the counting of votes.
He rejected the claim of Comelec and Smartmatic that the introduction of a new script or computer command in the Comelec’s transparency server on the evening of Election Day did not have any effect on the counting of votes..
Dubbed as “Buong Bayan Magkaisa, Isang Misa Para sa Katotohanan at Integridad ng Halalan” (The whole Nation Should Unite, A Mass for the Turth and Integrity of the Election), the mass was offered by Marcos supporters and volunteers to give thanks for the peaceful elections and to pray that truth would prevail, allowing the will of the people to be reflected in the results of the elections.
They were joined by Marcos who came with his wife Lawyer Liza Araneta Marcos, son Sandro, mother. former First Lady and Ilocos Norte Rep. Imelda Romualdez Marcos, his cousin, Leyte Rep. Martin Romualdez, other members of his family and close friends for the 12:30 p.m. mass officiated by Rev. Fr. Ben Sy.
After the mass, Marcos was mobbed with repeated reverberating chants of “BBM!!!!”, a play on his name initial.
Marcos said, “I am extremely thankful and humbled by the show of support. But this is not just about me. We are fighting about the very integrity of our elections, the very sanctity of the ballot. We will never stop until all votes are counted as they should be, not one vote more, not one vote less.”
Marcos earlier urged Comelec to stop the on-going quick count of the Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (PPCRV) after reports that a script was introduced into the transparency server of the poll body that altered the hash codes without prior authorization of top Comelec officials. Marcos started to lose the lead shortly thereafter..
He appealed for continued vigilance not only from his supporters but also from the election watchdogs as well, as he cited reports that as of May 13 over 3,800 Vote Counting Machines (VCMs) still could not transmit election results..
“I will rest when I am satisfied that the results being counted and are official, are actually validated by the results, as we can certainly confirm it from local reports from the different precincts,” assured Marcos.
Marcos said his assertion that hash codes have been changed at 7:30 p.m. on May 9 is true after two whistleblowers came out in two newspaper articles confirming that there were alterations made and a video has been circulating in social media that changes, indeed happened.
This forced Comelec Chairman Andres Bautista to admit that changes occurred. Bautista earlier claimed he did not know about it.
“This is a matter of grave and immediate concern. However we do not agree with Chairman Bautista’s claim that the change was something innocuous,” stressed Marcos.
Section 28 of Republic Act 8436 provides that any form of utilization without authorization or tampering with electronic devices or their components used in the automated elections is prohibited and punishable by law.
Furthermore, Marcos pointed out that Comelec rules also provide that changing the hash code requires an En Banc resolution but as the Chairman admitted, even he was not informed about it.
“In addition, if the alteration was something innocuous, why did they have to change it in the first place while in the middle of transmission? Why did they deny the change only to admit it later on? Were there other modifications made? By whom and upon whose authority? Why were the changes done by a Venezuelan Smartmatic technician rather than a Filipino Comelec-authorized personnel? “asked Marcos.
Meanwhile, Chong said anything under the sun can be done when the script of the server was changed.
He then presented a chart showing the steady decline in the lead of Marcos over his then closest rival Camarines Sur Rep. Leni Robredo allegedly an hour after the new script was introduced into the Comelec server at around 8 p.m. on May 9. (MCA)