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Court Ruling Extends Vote Protest of Philippine Marcos’ Son

Supporters of Vice-President Leni Robredo hold a rally in front of the Supreme court in Manila on October 15, 2019, as the high court is expected to handover a decision on the electoral protest by Bongbong Marcos against Robredo in the 2016 vice-presidential elections. (Photo by Ted ALJIBE / AFP) (Photo by TED ALJIBE/AFP via Getty Images)

By Andreo Calonzo

The Philippines’ top court on Tuesday decided to release the initial results of the vice-presidential vote recount, which the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos’ son said will delay his chance to assume the post.

Former Senator Ferdinand Marcos Jr. said he is “frustrated” by the court’s decision not to resolve his election protest against Vice President Leni Robredo victory in the 2016 polls. Robredo is already halfway through her six-year term.

The court instead decided to make public the result of the recount covering three provinces that will serve as basis for any further action on Marcos’ challenge. It also asked the two camps to comment on Marcos’ plea to nullify votes in three other provinces due to supposed irregularities in the 2016 elections.

“The proper vice president – myself – is being robbed of years of service,” Marcos said in a televised interview. President Rodrigo Duterte, who has faced questions on his health, has repeatedly said Marcos is his preferred successor if he had to leave office before his single term expires in 2022.

Robredo, leader of the opposition party, said she welcomes the court decision, as she urged the court to already junk Marcos’ protest. “The mere fact that this has been dragging on for so long only provides Marcos a platform for his lies,” she said in a separate televised briefing.

(Updates with comments from Marcos and Robredo from fourth paragraph.)

© 2019 Bloomberg L.P.