The camp of Vice President Leni Robredo on Monday insisted Iloilo City should not be included in the retrieval of ballot boxes from Iloilo province in connection with the election protest filed by ex-senator Ferdinand Marcos Jr.
Marcos filed his protest with the Commission on Elections, challenging Robredo’s victory in the 2016 vice presidential elections in which he also ran for vice president.
“The pilot province protested by Bongbong Marcos is the province of Iloilo, and we know for a fact that Iloilo City is separate and independent from the province of Iloilo,” Emil Marañon III, a consultant for Robredo’s legal team, said in a statement.
He said they would look into the possibility of clarifying before the Supreme Court, sitting as the Presidential Electoral Tribunal, the coverage of the retrieval of the ballot boxes in Iloilo.
On the basis of the schedule prepared by the PET ad hoc committee, municipal treasurers in the province and the city treasurer of Iloilo City supposedly have from May 21 to 25 to deliver around 2,318 ballot boxes from Iloilo province, and 430 ballot boxes from Iloilo City, to the staging area in Balabago, Jaro, for eventual transport to the PET headquarters in Ermita, Manila.
Last Monday, ballot boxes from municipalities of Guimbal, Miagao, Oton, Tigbauan, San Joaquin, Igbaras and Tubungan were expected to be recovered.
On May 22, ballot boxes from Alimodian, Leganes, Leon, New Lucena, Pavia, San Miguel, Santa Barbara, Zarra, Iloilo City and Mina would be expected to be delivered.
On the other hand, ballot boxes from Badiangan, Bingawan, Cabatuan, Calinog, Janiuay, Lambunao, Maasin, and Pototan will be retrieved on May 23, while those from Passi City, Anilao, Banate, Barotac Nuevo, Dingle, Duenas, Dumangas and San Enrique will be recovered on May 24.
On May 25, ballot boxes from Ajuy, Balasan, Barotac Viedo, Batad, Carles, Concepcion, Estancia, Lemery, San Dionisio, San Rafael and Sara are expected to arrive at the staging area at the Philippine Span Asia Containers Inc. in Balabago, Jaro, Iloilo City.
Marcos identified three pilot provinces in his election protest: Camarines Sur, Iloilo and Negros Oriental.