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Bongbong Marcos’ Election Protest Surges as COMELEC Chair Got Impeached after Resignation

election




welcome By:

Elena Grace Flores

Committee Chairman Rey Umali said; “The only purpose of impeachment is to remove.  Had COMELEC Chair Andres Bautista resigned effective immediately, that would have ended the issue on impeachment.” Bautista tendered his resignation after all 6 Comelec commissioners pushed him to either take a leave or resign, as they said he “can no longer effectively lead the election body.” He faces a feud over money with his estranged wife, Patricia, whom he sued for robbery and extortion. Bautista was appointed by then-President Noynoy Aquino as Comelec chairman. Before this, he was chairman of the Presidential Commission on Good Government that sequestered the Marcoses’ wealth.






Youtube Video by; INQUIRER.net

[VIDEO]: After “much prayer and discernment,” Commission on Elections (Comelec) Chair Andres Bautista announced on Wednesday his decision to resign from his post by the end of the year.




Election 2016 Integrity

In his letter of his resignation, Bautista stresses that the 2016 elections under his watch, “was hailed by independent and foreign observers as the best managed and most credible in the country’s electoral history.” “I am thankful for the love, prayers, and support you have shown me, most especially during my most challenging times. Amid the hurtful, baseless, and malicious accusations hurled against me, most of you never left my side,” Bautista said.




End-Year Resignation

Bautista announced that he is resigning from his post by the end of the year. “It is with deep sadness that I am informing you of my decision to resign as the chair of the Commission on Elections by the end of the year,” Bautista said in a letter to the Comelec. “After much prayer and discernment, I believe that this is the right time to step down given the postponement of the barangay and SK elections. This was not an easy decision. But my family, especially my children, need me now more than ever,” Bautista said. This prompts the Congress to facilitate a voting. At 137-75 votes, the House of Representatives overturned its Justice Committee’s recommendation that dismissed the complaint against Bautista filed by former Negros Oriental Representative Jacinto Paras and lawyer Ferdinand Topacio of the Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption.

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Give Time for the President

The outgoing COMELEC Chair said that he has already filed a resignation letter in Malacañang. He said his resignation is effective by December 31, 2017. “I also want to give our President time to choose my successor,” He added. However, after the voting, KABAYAN Party-list Rep. Harry Roque sent out a tweet saying, “We have more than 100 no votes. Andy Bautista is impeached!”

Effects on the Election Protest

Umali said the vote was “democracy at work.” Meanwhile, Senate Majority Leader Tito Sotto assures that the Senate shall specify the date and time to consider the Articles of Impeachment. Bautista responded to the House vote soon after the results came out. “I acknowledge that all members of the House of Representatives are entitled to their own opinion. While it may be an unnecessary move since I already tendered my resignation to the President today the effective end of the year to ensure a smooth transition, I will abide by the Constitution and the relevant rules regarding the impeachment process,” Bautista added. Bongbong Marcos’ electoral protest against VP Leni Robredo is expected to surge now as delays at the COMELEC are the ultimate reasons why the recount cannot proceed yet. This coincides when Enrile handed the late President Ferdinand Marcos’ diaries to the younger Marcos.



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Senators See Basis of Bongbong Marcos’ Protest as COMELEC Chair’s Probe Continues

senators




welcome By:

Elena Grace Flores

The Senate Committee on Banks’ inquiry into the ill-gotten wealth of COMELEC chairman Andres Bautista presses the Luzon Development Bank representative for STR report. Resource persons from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas and the Anti-Money Laundering Council also attend the probe. Senator Francis Escudero leads the process in response to the resolution filed by Senators Panfilo Lacson and Tito Sotto. This is after his estranged wife Patricia Bautista’s revelations that support Bongbong Marcos’ electoral protest against Leni Robredo.






YouTube Video by;  Senate of the Philippines

[VIDEO]: Agenda: P.S. Res. No. 468 – Anti-Money Laundering Act (AMLA)




Suspicion Transaction Reports

The commission specifically cites violations of Sections 11, 20 and 21 of Republic Act 10173 or the Data Privacy Act. It is in dispensing the poll body’s duty as personal information controller. The NPC stresses that Bautista also violates several provisions of the same law. That penalizes accessing sensitive personal information due to negligence and imposes imprisonment of three to six years and a fine of P500,000 to P4 million. Senators Grace Poe, Francis Escudero, and Tito Sotto also insist that there’s an unusual trend his deposits but the LDB rep refuses to acknowledge such anomalies as per their internal process.




Comelec in Limbo

Commission of Elections Commissioner Rowena Guanzon in a separate interview said that she advises Bautista to take a leave of absence: “I was very candid with him. I told him to take a leave for your sake also, and for the sake of Comelec.” “Now we’re in limbo. Who is the head of agency? He is in the country, and he has not filed an official leave of absence or whatever, so Comelec is suffering,” she said. “The year 2018 is our preparation year for the 2019 elections, so it is concerning. Hopefully, our budget will not be reduced,” she said.










Disregard of Duties as per Protest

Lawyer Manuelito Luna for Rep. Paras’ Impeachment complaint bares that Bautista’s accountabilities for the data breach and the script tweak of the server during the 2016 elections constitute the betrayal of public trust and culpable violation of the Constitution. They would submit to the House the NPC decision last December that finds Bautista liable for lack of appreciation for data protection. The commission has said that there was more than just the implementation of security measures. The NPC concludes that Bautista’s willful and intentional disregard of his duties as head of the agency is tantamount to gross negligence.

AWOL Status

Since the COMELEC Chair is on leave without proper notice, he is theoretically on AWOL status. This is again negligence on his part. That jeopardizes the upcoming 2019 election. Bongbong Marcos was right on the first part of his electoral protest so far after all. The previous election does not have the credibility needed fo publi satisfaction because of the various lapses that the COMELEC Chair allowed to happen.

http://www.philstar.com/headlines/2017/08/22/1731566/comeleaks-included-impeach-raps-vs-bautista

http://www.philstar.com/video-features/2017/08/23/1731909/live-senate-probe-comelec-chair-andres-bautista-wealth-day-1

Guanzon: I’ve asked Comelec chair Bautista to take a leave of absence




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Bongbong Marcos: COMELEC Must Pay Election Storage Fees at Overseas Posts

election




welcome By: Elena Grace Flores

Bongbong Marcos responds respectfully that COMELEC must defray for or pay the election ballot storage fees overseas because it’s their mandate to safeguard these materials. It is unfair to charge it against his paid deposits for the recount. This is not the first time that the poll agency’s incompetence is put on the line. Eary this year, it also failed to secure its database from alleged hackers.






Youtube video from; GMA News

[VIDEO]: Bautista, pinakakasuhan dahil sa nangyaring pangha-hack sa COMELEC website




Primary Guardian

Marcos said that as the primary guardian of the election, it is the duty of the COMELEC to protect these ballots. Therefore the claims for payments of their storage by the consular offices must be dealt with accordingly. It is not only constitutional but doing so means that the agency adheres to the rules and regulations of the land.




Incompetent Leadership

Early last year, there was a recommendation that the COMELEC must be charged with negligence due to the hacking incident that leaks out the election database to the public. Chairman Andres Bautista thinks that this is unfair because authorities must punish the criminal and not the victim. However, Bautista must also be liable for his negligence.










Unfair Process

The former Senator questions why the overseas storage fees will be charged against his deposits when the Supreme Court clearly orders that the fees are for the retrieval of ballots. This should refer to the precincts mentioned his electoral protest against Leni Robredo. Particularly the ones in his three pilot provinces.

Injustice

It is an injustice for COMELEC to insist that the said fees be taken from the 66 M Pesos he already paid.  It is their job in the first place to make sure that they are safe and not tampered with. Otherwise, this will violate the PET’s aim to facilitate the electoral protest in a speedy and inexpensive manner.

https://www.bongbongmarcos.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/BBMs-Comment-to-Letter-dtd-10-July-2017-of-Maria-Alarkon-dtd-7-August-2017-Filed.pdf




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Will Bongbong Marcos Ignore Referral Fees Received by Comelec Chair from Divina, Smartmatic?

referral




welcome By: Elena Grace Flores

Patricia Paz Bautista, the estranged wife of Comelec Chairman Juan Andres Bautista said that her husband received at least P500,000 in referral fees from Smartmatic Corp. This is through Divina Law firm as per the commission sheet. The Chairman denies this by saying that before his election post, he’s already referring real-estate clients to Divina. It already has an existing relationship with Smartmatic. Bongbong Marcos also said that it’s better to investigate the matter than drawing up speculations. He might not want to get involved with the fiasco but he cannot ignore the fact that this allegation supports the first part of his election protest against Leni Robredo that involves the Comelec-Smartmatic anomalies.






Youtube video from; ABS-CBN News

[VIDEO]: Comelec chairman Andy Bautista refuted claims that he received a “referral fee” from DivinaLaw in respect to Smartmatic. He also said that when he became Comelec chairman in 2015, Smartmatic is already the technology provider for the elections.




The Chairman’s Defense

It is unclear when Chairman Bautista received the referral fees. He points out that Smartmatic has been the Comelec’s technology provider since 2010 or five years before he was appointed the chairman of the election body. DivinaLaw is just one of the many law firms engaged by Smartmatic, Bautista added. However, prior to his existing post, he was PCGG Chairman. That is still covered by the law that government officials must not receive favors that can jeopardize their responsibilities for the public.




Impeachment Grounds

Mrs. Bautista also said that her lawyers told her that Bautista could be liable for violation of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act and the Anti-Money Laundering Act. They could be grounds for impeachment. She explained that her findings might lead to a much bigger crime. It is not certain if she insinuates Marcos’ protest against Robredo but it is the hottest event right now on the matter.










Legal Proceedings

Kabayan party-list Rep. Harry Roque comments that Bautista’s admission for receiving such fees made him liable for violation of Republic Act 3019 or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. He is a public official. Therefore, he is not allowed under the law to receive any gift or consideration from anybody who has an interest in his office, Roque said. The National Bureau of Investigation launches a probe into Bautista’s finances. It is not surprising that the commissions from Smartmatic cast doubts on all elections supervised by the Comelec chief.

Law on Evidence

It might be premature for Marcos to get involved in the allegations thrown at the Comelec Chair. Most evidence for his protest is already submitted to PET. Should the legal findings of the proceedings made against Bautista are confirmed positive, these can add as both physical and public evidence on the case. In paper or physical as per law that supports the public’s general interest. The recount will just be a formality.

Andy got P500K from Smartmatic – wife




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Cases against Patricia Bautista also Cloud Bongbong Marcos’ Election Recount

election




welcome By: Elena Grace Flores

Atty. Lorna Kapunan said that the camp of the Comelec chair Andres Bautista is filing several charges against his wife, Patricia Bautista to confuse the public. Kapunan stresses that chairman Bautista is confusing the narrative of the case. He sued his wife for robbery and extortion. A cyber crime case against the lawyer herself is even also filed. With these ongoing, Bongbong Marcos’ election protest proceeding seems to be on a halt. No matter how Leni Robredo’s lawyer, Romulo Macalintal denies it, the Bautista issues also cloud the recount bid of Marcos.






Youtube video from; ABS-CBN News

[VIDEO]: The Bautista family saga continues now with Atty. Lorna Kapunan, the legal adviser of Patricia Bautista, saying that the camp of Commission on Elections (Comelec) Chairman Andy Bautista is trying to “cloud the issue.”




Shooting the Messenger

Bautista’s camp seems to be very busy filing bizarre cases to elude from the real issue of SALN non-disclosure that affects the integrity of the 2016 election. “Because they cannot shoot the message, they are now shooting the messengers. We have a robbery, we have qualified theft, we have extortion, we have libel, and against me, I know, cyber crime,” Kapunan said.




Evidence Tells All

When Mrs. Bautista reveals what she discovers, she has all the evidence. Whereas when Martin Bautista defends his brother, no paper trail is found. “They want to cloud the issue and tell the public that all the evidence has been either manufactured, fabricated, illegally obtained, robbed, raided from a safe. They want to exclude all of these things as evidence in the pending investigation called the Doctrine of the Fruit of the Poisonous Tree,” Kapunan said.










Cloud on Election Protest

Lawyer Romulo Macalintal explains that questions about the integrity of the election can only be proven by discrepancies in the votes cast on the ballots. This includes those transmitted by the vote counting machines. Not by claims that Bautista pocketed commissions from Smartmatic.

Recount

The Marcos camp’s estimate on the recount start is around mid-August. As of this time of writing, there’s no indication yet that it can happen very soon. However, the case of the Bautistas dominate the mainstream media. Therefore, no one can deny that it has no effect on the ongoing Marcos-Robredo electoral protest.

http://news.abs-cbn.com/video/news/08/15/17/charges-vs-patricia-bautista-meant-to-cloud-the-issue-kapunan

http://news.abs-cbn.com/news/08/09/17/will-comelec-chiefs-woes-affect-marcos-poll-protest-lawyer-chimes-in