On 9 July 2018, BBM filed a Manifestation of Grave Concern with Extremely Urgent Motion to Investigate.
This Manifestation concerns one of Robredo’s revisors who went to the “outing” of the PET Head Revisors, ballot box Custodians/Handlers, and PET Chief Tabulator at 3 Js Resort in Pansol, Calamba, Laguna on 22 June 2018. Photos of the “Pansol outing” were obtained from the Facebook posts of one of the PET Head Revisors, wherein twenty-five (25) attendees were identified. Robredo’s revisor was clearly seen fraternizing with the PET personnel in several photos which she actually uploaded in her Facebook page.
BBM said the act of fraternizing with Robredo’s revisor by the PET personnel is prohibited because it is proscribed by the Code of Conduct for Court Personnel and the Canon of Judicial Ethics. In fact, the Supreme Court has ruled that “in the case of public servants who are in the judiciary, their conduct and behavior, from the presiding judge to the lowliest clerk, must not only be characterized by propriety and decorum, but above all else, must be above suspicion.” Furthermore, jurisprudence dictates“the conduct of Court personnel must be free from any whiff of impropriety, not only with respect to his duties in the judicial branch but also to his behavior outside the Court as a private individual.
“These PET personnel, particularly the Head Revisors and the Alternate Head Revisors, preside over their respective Revision Committees. Their position allows them to control the conduct of judicial recount and revision of ballots. In fact, they are incharge of initially determining whether the ballots are valid, rejected or stray and likewise mandated to determine if the protested ballots comply with the 50% shading threshold.”
In view of the positions of the individuals involved in the Pansol outing, it is most likely that Robredo’s camp, through their revisor, already infiltrated and curried favor with the PET personnel in order to manipulate, influence and / or control the revision proceedings.
BBM asked the PET to investigate the incident and to impose proper sanctions on the persons involved in the outing.
On 10 July 2018, BBM received a Motion from Robredo asking Atty. Vic Rodriguez to name the persons in the revision area who were aware of the plastic magnifying lens allegedly used by Nestor Borromeo (BBM’s revisor).
On 11 July 2018, Robredo filed a Counter-Manifestation wherein she claimed that “an investigation has already been conducted where some of the personalities involved were already meted with penalties.” She also said that BBM was fully aware that an investigation had already been conducted by the PET.
These are untruthful statements. BBM filed his Manifestation [to investigate the Pansol outing] on 9 July 2018 and he did so because he had not received any information nor official communication informing him of any investigation conducted by the Tribunal nor any information that some personalities were already sanctioned, as claimed by Robredo.
On 11 July 2018, BBM paid and complied with the Php 50,000.- Court Fine imposed by the Tribunal.
On 12 July 2018, BBM received a Notice from the PET dated June 10, 2018 which resolved to :
1. Note several Incident Report(s) regarding the absence of the required election day Minutes of Voting (MOVs) inside the ballot boxes in numerous precincts in Iloilo;
2. Note several Incident Report(s) wherein there were glaring discrepancies of the signatures in the Minutes of Voting (MOVs) found inside the ballot boxes in numerous precincts in Iloilo;
3. Note several Incident Report(s) regarding wet, damaged and/or unreadable ballots found inside the ballot boxes in numerous precincts in Iloilo;
4. Note the Incident Report(s) wherein there were glaring discrepancies of the signatures of the BEI Chairman found inside the ballot boxes in numerous precincts in Iloilo;
5. Note the Incident Report(s) regarding the damaged condition of the ballot boxes in numerous precincts in Iloilo;
6. Note the Incident Report dated June 27, 2018 relative to Personal Complaint of Alternate Revisor Sally H. Nisola against Protestee Revisor Rogelio Milan; Approve the recommendation therein; and Direct all Party Revisors, Head Revisors and Appraisers to observe proper decorum in the revision area; and
7. Note the Incident Report dated June 14, 2018, which reads “One piece of Voter’s Verification Receipt (VVR) left under Table No. 7, care of Head Revisor Princess Bometivo, per report of WM2 Romeo B. Agcaoili dated June 14, 2018 stating that such document was found upon conducting initial roving inspection inside the Revision Room yesterday afternoon (June 13, 2018);” Require Head Revisor Princess Bometivo to explain (a) why the subject VVR was left under her table and (b) why she should not be removed as Head Revisor because of such negligence, both within ten (10) days from notice.
The PET further resolved to :
1. Note Robredo’s Motion to Direct Atty. Vic Rodriguez to disclose the names of persons in the revision area who were aware of the plastic magnifying glass;
2. Note the OSG’s Manifestation and Motion (in Lieu of Comment);
3. Direct the COMELEC to file its own Comment on Robredo’s Motion for Reconsideration regarding the 25% shading threshold within a non-extendible period of ten (10) days from notice;
4. Note the Letter of Head Revisor Julius Caezar D. Tumalad, with a stern warning that a repetition of the same or similar acts shall be dealt with more severely;
5. Note the Letter of Head Revisor Niño Jefferson J. Regala;
6. Note the Letter of Jose Oliver F. Farne, Robredo’s revisor, with a stern warning that a repetition of the same or similar acts shall be dealt with more severely;
7. Note the Report of the PET Retrieval Team that the estimated expenses for the delivery of three hundred sixty-five (365) ballot boxes and other election documents from the House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal’s (HRET) election protest of Villafuerte vs. Bordado amounts to Php 147,043.20;
8. Note BBM’s Manifestation of Grave Concern with Extremely Urgent Motion to Investigate, but deny the said motion because the Tribunal already commenced and concluded its investigation regarding the “Pansol outing;”
9. Note the Letter of Nestor D. Borromeo, BBM’s revisor, with a stern warning that a repetition of the same shall be dealt with more severely;
10. Note Without Action Robredo’s Urgent Motion to direct the COMELEC to immediately file its Comment; and
11. Note BBM’s Strong Manifestation with Motion, but deny the said motion to hold in abeyance the use of decrypted ballot images in the enumerated protested clustered precincts.
After 106 weeks (or roughly 746 days) :
• The PET still has to complete the manual recount of votes from Camarines Sur.
** there are ballot boxes remaining from 368 clustered precincts at the HRET due to the election protest of Luis R. Villafuerte vs. Gabriel H. Bordado.
• The PET has begun the manual recount of votes from Iloilo.
[per undertaking # 11 of 21]
After Camarines Sur & Iloilo, the remaining “pilot province” is Negros Oriental
- - - - -
The PET has yet to resolve the following matters :
• In a Resolution dated 10 April 2018, the PET denied Robredo’s Ex Parte Motion.
• In a Resolution dated 24 April 2018, the PET required BBM and the COMELEC to comment on Robredo’s Urgent Motion for Reconsideration.
• On 2 May 2018, Robredo filed an Urgent Motion for Reconsideration.
• On 28 May 2018, BBM filed his Opposition to Robredo’s Motion
• On 6 July 2018, BBM received a Manifestation from the Office of the Solicitor General.
• In several Resolutions, the PET :
> referred other matters to the the PET Commissioners.
• In a Resolution dated 17 April 2018, the PET required BBM and Robredo to comment on COMELEC’s request.
• On 25 May 2018, BBM filed his Opposition to the COMELEC’s request.
• To date, Robredo has NOT yet filed any comment regarding the above issue.
• In a Resolution dated 29 August 2017, the PET directed BBM to submit a new list of witnesses for the provinces of Basilan, Lanao del Sur and within five (5) days.
• On 11 September 2017, BBM filed his Compliance and submitted his list of witnesses.
• In a Resolution dated 19 September 2017, the PET required BBM to “STRICTLY COMPLY with the resolution dated August 29, 2017 directing him to identify his witnesses and the concerned clustered precincts subject of their testimonies within a FINAL and NON-EXTENDIBLE period of five (5) days from notice.”
> It is worth mentioning that on 11 September 2017, BBM had already submitted 171 names of potential wirtnesses to the PET.
• On 9 October 2017, BBM complied with the PET’s directive and submitted 7,356 names of witnesses for the provinces of Basilan, Lanao del Sur & Maguindanao.
• In a Resolution dated 7 November 2017, the PET “noted” BBM’s Compliance.