‘They have only one job’: Zubiri chews up Comelec, PES over missing COCs

Published May 24, 2022, 11:44 PM

by Ellson Quismorio

Senate Majority Leader Migz Zubiri lost his cool during the canvassing of votes Tuesday night over the repeated cases of missing certificates of canvass (COCs), which caused delays in the proceedings.

Senate Majority Leader Migz Zubiri gets visibility upset over the repeated cases of missing COCs during the canvassing of presidential and vice presidential race votes on May 24, 2022 (Noel Pabalate/ MANILA BULLETIN)

For Zubiri, chairman of the Senate contingent to the National Board of Canvassers (NBOC), the placing of COCs is so simple a task that it can’t be messed up.

At past 9 p.m., the House of Representatives and Senate members sitting in the joint session discovered that the ballot box from Sultan Kudarat didn’t contain a COC.

This was only a few minutes after the ballot box from Pampanga was also found with no COC.

“May we direct the secretariat–and we’ll have to defer, we move to defer the canvassing of the province of Sultan Kudarat and direct the secretariat, particularly also the Comelec (Commission on Elections) to explain within the hour or if they can also present the PES (provincial election supervisor) to explain within the hour why the manually transmitted COCs are not included in the ballot boxes sent to the Senate,” Zubiri said.

“With the indulgence of my colleagues, as mentioned earlier by Senator Nancy Binay and our dear colleagues on that side–they have only one job, and one job to do, the PES, which is to insert the COCs of the province of the results of the president and vice president [race] into a ballot box and deliver it to the Senate,” the exasperated senator said.

“One job and one job only! How can they be remiss of that job that is constitutionally mandated of them to do. And therefore we admonish the Comelec for this non-action or non-appearance of these COCs,” he noted.

Zubiri further said “I’d like to reiterate my motion, we defer the canvassing of the province of Sultan Kudarat and direct the secretariat together with the Comelec to report within the hour, particularly the Comelec, and the PES why they [COC] are missing.

The chairman of the House contingent to the NBOC is House Majority Leader Martin Romualdez.

The solons would continue to canvass COCs for two more hours before suspending the joint session.

The NBOC’s job is to tabulate the votes cast for the presidential and vice presidential race last May 9 and proclaim the winners.

 
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