31 August 2016
Showing respect and recognition of the importance of the Filipino as a national language and in joining the nation in celebrating Buwan ng Wika that started on August 1 and to end August 31, Vice President Leni Robredo filed today a pleading at the Presidential Electoral Tribunal (PET) in Filipino.
Through her lead lawyer Romulo Macalintal, Robredo said that even the Supreme Court had used the Filipino language in writing some decisions in previous cases which Robredo cited in her pleading entitled: “Pagsunod sa Utos ng Tribunal na Maghain ng Komento sa Liham ng Comelec”.
It was filed in compliance with the PET order to comment on the Comelec’s letter to the PET advising the latter of Comelec’s action in preserving some election documents and paraphernalia in compliance with the Preliminary Precautionary Order (PPO) of the PET in connection with the election protest filed by former Senator Ferdinand Bongbong Marcos against Leni.
Macalintal said they are not objecting to Comelec’s act of closing or stripping of the Vote Counting Machines and any back-up materials for contents of the VCMs and the SD cards.
It was added, “Meron namang sapat na abiso ang Comelec sa mga abugado at watchers ng bawat partido bago isagawa ang mga bagay na ito kung saan sila ay papayagang magmasid (observe) sa pamamagitan ng kanilang mga kinatawan”.
“On Comelec’s concern that under the AES Contract if said VCMs which were merely leased from Smartmatic would still be in possession of Comelec by December 1, 2016, it will be considered as sold and Comelec shall pay the price thereof, without prejudice to require the protestant to shoulder such cost,” Macalintal said.
“Anumang halagang babayaran ng Comelec ay dapat bayaran ni Marcos sapagkat siya ang nagpasimuno ng election protest na ito.”
He also told the Tribunal that, “wala naman nakitang anumang anomalya sa ginawa ng Comelec ng closure o stripping ng ilang VCMs bago nito natanggap ang PPO mula sa PET.”