“If there really was evidence of cheating, why have [you] surfaced only now?” Commission on Elections (Comelec) Chairman Andres Bautista dared “whistle blowers” who accused the administration of cheating in the May 9 elections.
Boy Saycon of a civil society group Council for Philippine Affairs (Copa) presented to reporters at the Senate on Monday, May 30, three hooded “whistle-blowers” who said they rigged the voting results in vote-rich Quezon under instructions from an unnamed member of the ruling Liberal Party (LP).
“It’s the last week of May. If there was cheating in this scale, [you] should have surfaced early on,” Bautista said when interviewed on radio on Tuesday, May 31.
Bautista spoke of other allegations of fraud, such as compromising the vote-counting machines (VCM) in previous elections. “There were many accusations that the machines have been tampered with, but since 2010, no case has moved forward in substantiating these claims.”
Bautista assured the public that protocols were put in place to ensure integrity and credibility in the past elections. “The safeguards stated in our laws were implemented. It is so easy to accuse and to throw shade [at the process]. The problem is proof.”
Urging the public to “be responsible,” Bautista reminded critics: “If they have an accusation, it should come with proof.”
The camp of losing vice-presidential bet Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. is mulling election protests related to over 3 million undervotes or votes that have not been accounted for. Abakada Rep. Jonathan dela Cruz took his speech during Monday’s proclamation to address issues in the past elections, such as vote-buying and campaign spending, that he believes have not been paid due attention by the Comelec.