- The camps of Robredo and Marcos have disagreed over the importance of ‘missing’ audit logs
- Marcos’ lawyer said this is an indication of cheating
- But Robredo’s legal counsel argued audit logs should have been delivered to election officer, as per Comelec resolution
MANILA, Philippines – The rival camps of Vice President Leni Robredo and former senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos have clashed over the importance of the missing audit logs inside the ballot boxes, as the latter claimed.
Earlier, Marcos claimed 38 of the 42 precincts in Bato, Camarines Sur have missing audit logs. Some ballots were also wet and unreadable; supposedly proof of the alleged cheating.
Marcos’ lawyer, Vic Rodriguez, said missing audit logs showed that the ballot boxes were tampered with by election inspectors using their individual pin codes.
“That is an essential, if not indispensable part in determining the integrity of the vote counting machine, in the integrity of what transpired, what took place before the opening of the precinct, during the opening of the precinct, and all the way after its closing,” Rodriguez told ANC’s Headstart.
Indication of cheating, or of incompetence?
However, Robredo’s legal counsel, Romulo Macalintal, described Rodriguez’s insinuations as lies; saying missing audit logs is not an indication of cheating.
“Hindi ho sign ng pandaraya ‘yun. ‘Yun ay sign na di kayo nagbabasa ng mga resolution ng Comelec at ngayon ay sinisisi n’yo na naman ang Comelec dahil kayo ay may sariling kapabayaan,” said Macalintal.
[That is not an indication of cheating. That is a sign that you do not read the Comelec resolution and now you are blaming the Comelec for your own incompetence.]
Macalintal explained that a Comelec resolution released before the 2016 election actually directed the board of election inspectors (BOI) to deliver these logs to the election officer; thus should not be found on the ballot boxes.
As for the wet ballots, Macalintal said those got wet during the typhoon in December. But this, too, is not an indication of irregularities since there are always the ballot images to refer to, said Macalintal
“I think Mr. Marcos should consult his representatives when the ballots were retrieved. Maybe he failed to read their report or they hid the truth from him about the condition of the ballots,” he added.