By Yuji Vincent Gonzales | Inquirer.net
Losing vice presidential candidate and former Sen. Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. on Monday paid P36 million to the Supreme Court as first installment of the required fee for the retrieval of election materials for his election protest against Vice President Leni Robredo.
In an ambush interview with reporters, Marcos said he was hoping that his compliance to the high court’s order would “go a long way to get the process started.”
“Galing ako sa Office of the Clerk of Court at ako ay nag-comply sa order na bayaran ang first tranche para sa protest ko. Kahit na merong kaming mga disagreement sa pagkalkula dahil pinagbabayad kami kahit na Semana Santa,” Marcos said.
“Masyado nang matagal ang isang taon. Hanggang ngayon ay hindi pa alam ng taong bayan kung sino talaga ang nanalo bilang Bise Presidente, kaya palagay ko ang isang taon ay masyado nang mahaba. Sana ang ating magigiting na justices ay simulant na ang process sa paghusga kung sino ba talaga ang nanalo sa nakaraang halalan,” he added.
The SC, sitting as Presidential Electoral Tribunal, ordered Marcos to pay a total of P66.2 million for the precincts he was contesting. In his protest, the late dictator’s son and namesake urged the court to order the immediate collection, retrieval, transport, and delivery of all ballot boxes in 39,221 clustered precincts or equivalent to 132,446 established precincts.
Robredo, meanwhile, was required to pay P15,639,000. In her counter-protest, the duly elected Vice President questioned 8,042 clustered precincts or 31,278 established precincts.
Both camps were ordered to pay in two tranches. The first installment was supposed to be received last April 14, Good Friday, but the date fell on a national holiday. The deadline for the second installment is on July 14.