Atienza elevates to SC election protest vs. Mayor Lim

March 15, 2012 9:21 am 

MANILA, March 14 – Former Manila Mayor Lito Atienza has filed a petition before the Supreme Court (SC) questioning a Commission on Elections (Comelec) ruling dismissing his election protest against Manila Mayor Alfredo S. Lim in 2011.

In a 19-page petition for review, Atienza said that the Comelec en banc committed grave abuse of discretion when it dismissed his motion for reconsideration (MR) questioning a Comelec decision on Jan. 6, 2012.

He said that the Comelec abused its discretion because it did not allow him to reveal the irregularities allegedly occurred during the May 10, 2010 synchronized automated elections.

Atienza is contesting for the opening of 80 percent unrevised precincts involving thousands of ballots.

He said that the Comelec violated his rights when it did not hear on the remaining 854,700 ballots from 1,221 unrevised clustered precincts.

"Petitioner is instituting this petition not only for himself but for the hundreds of thousands of voters of the city of Manila who, together with the petitioner, are crying out that their votes be properly accounted for," Atienza's petition said.

The Comelec en banc affirmed the order of its First Division on Sept. 13, 2011, confirming the election victory of Lim in the City of Manila in the May 10, 2010 local elections.

According to the Comelec, Atienza "failed to establish the merit or legitimacy of his election protest on the pinpointed (200) pilot precincts, representing 14.25 percent of the total 1,403 contested clustered precincts."

The Comelec had declared that Lim is the true winner in the city's mayoralty race and the legitimate Manila mayor.

The Comelec ruling said that even in the best scenarios, Atienza would not be able to overcome the lead of Lim.

It also found no merit in Atienza's MR.

The Comelec had said that Atienza failed to establish the legitimacy of his election protest from his pinpointed cluster of precincts.

According to the Comelec decision, even if the Comelec included the ballots that were rejected by Precinct Count Optical Scan (PCOS), Lim would still win the elections with a lead of 42,672 votes. (PNA)

RMA/PTR

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