A few hours after the Supreme Court, sitting as Presidential Electoral Tribunal (PET), dismissed former Senator Bongbong Marcos’ electoral protest against her, Vice President Leni Robredo appealed to Filipinos, especially to her supporters, to put the past behind and move forward to address the pressing issues in the country.
“We are going through so much. Let us put aside our ill feelings. Let us put aside our misunderstandings. Let us put aside the arguments because a lot of people are depending on us,” she said in a statement delivered on Tuesday night.
“Hinihingi ko lang sa lahat lalo na sa supporters natin (I am asking everyone, especially to my supporters) is to put this behind us and let us move forward together. I am asking everyone, especially to my supporters, is to put this behind us and let us move forward together. Let us join hands. Let us focus on the work before us,” she added.
During her speech, she thanked her staff at the Office of the Vice President (OVP) for their sacrifices despite the fact that many questioned the legitimacy of her mandate as the country’s second-highest official.
“No one had second thoughts not to give their 100 percent. Now that this is behind us, it will embolden us,” she said, adding that she now has the strength of mind to address the country’s needs.
Supreme Court spokesperson Atty. Brian Keith Hosaka made the announcement that the PET dismissed the Marcos’ electoral protest.
He said that out of 15 justices who were present during Tuesday’s morning session, “seven members fully concurred in the dismissal while eight justices concurred in the results.”
During the recount of three provinces in October 2019, the PET said that Robredo’s lead grew by 15,000 from the 5,415 clustered precincts in Camarines Sur, Iloilo, and Negros Oriental.
Robredo thanked the PET, and stressed the importance of believing in the process and the integrity of the magistrates.
“We are very happy and grateful that this trust is affirmed. Even with a protest, we have not allowed it to (hinder the) more important work of serving the people,” Robredo said.
Asked how the PET ruling will impact her plans for 2022, the vice president said she wants to savor this day because they waited for it for almost five years.
She stressed that she and her staff are still immersed in their everyday work that it feels like a sin to think about politics at this time.
Robredo, however, knows that the time will come to think about her 2022 plans. She even hinted that once the vaccine is here, maybe that will be the time to think about politics.
“Pag settled na lahat, mas may panahon na tayo tumutok sa plano. Mas maayos na pang araw-araw muna (Once everything is settled, there will be a time to focus on the plan. It is better to focus on what we need to do every day first),” she said.