Robredo 'relieved' recount will happen soon

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(File photo)

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, March 27) — Vice President Leni Robredo says she's relieved the Presidential Electoral Tribunal (PET) is ready for the vote recount.

Speaking at an event in Cebu City Tuesday, Robredo said, "Ito, relief ito para sa amin. Matagal na naming hinihintay na magsimula na iyong recount, kasi ang pakiramdam nga namin, nagkakaroon lang ng pagkakataon na gamitin iyong isyung ito para i-muddle kung ano iyong katotohanan. Pero hindi ko puwedeng i-discuss iyong merits ng kaso kasi mayroon kaming gag order galing sa Supreme Court. Pero itong recount, matagal na nating inaasam na mag-umpisa na."

[Translation: This is a relief for us. We've waited for the recount to happen for a long time, because we feel the issue is being used to muddle the truth. However, i cannot discuss the merits of the case because of the gag order from the Supreme Court. But we've want the recount to start for quite a while.]

Tedious process

The recount will happen two years after former Senator and Vice Presidential candidate Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. brought his electoral protest to the Supreme Court.

The tedious recount will happen inside a gymnasium in the Supreme Court compund in Manila.

There will be 50 revision tables for 50 revision committees. But the PET adhoc committee said they can only set up 40 committees when the recount begins on April second. As it is, they need to hire 10 more revisors.

Each committee is composed of a head revisor – who is PET employee – and one representative for each of the two candidates.

Head revisors are carefully picked as the revision committees face a huge task which would be performed within a given time frame.

They must process the results of over 5,000 clustered precincts from three pilot provinces chosen by Marcos: Camarines Sur, Iloilo, and Negros Oriental.

In places where there are less than 300 ballots, they must finish the recount in five and a half hours. For 300 to 699 ballots, they only have a little more than eight hours. And for more than 700 ballots, they're given 11 hours.

Should there be objections or claims by either of the parties, the PET would have the last say.

This is the first time ever that the PET will be doing a recount. Unfortunately, the counting is off-limits to media, and the tribunal would only issue announcements should the need arise.