Speaker Lord Allan Velasco on Monday assured the public that Congress will do its duty to ensure that their choice of leaders is the “legitimate expression” of the will of the people.
Velasco gave the assurance as he led the initialization of the Consolidation and Canvassing System (CCS) machine that will receive the transmission of the Certificates of Canvass (COCs) from all over the country along with Senate President Vicente Sotto.
He said it is the constitutional mandate of Congress to receive and canvass the votes for the presidential and vice presidential race.
“May we all undertake this task with a profound and even critical awareness that we are entrusted by the Filipino people with this duty to ensure that our choice of leaders is the legitimate expression of the will of our people,” he said.
The CCS machine, which will receive the electronically transmitted COCs from provincial and city boards of canvassers, as well as special canvassing panels for overseas absentee voting, has been installed and initialized in the House of Representatives.
“As we all settle into a better normal, we are ready to welcome a new leadership that will usher our nation towards much-needed economic growth and recovery,” Velasco said.
He called on everyone to exercise prudence and diligence to ensure the integrity of the electoral process.
Meanwhile, Sotto noted that under the Constitution, the election returns for president and vice president, duly certified by the Board of Canvassers of each province and city, shall be transmitted to Congress.
He said upon receipt of the certificates of canvass, the President of the Senate shall, not later than 30 days after the day of the election, open all certificates in the presence of the Senate and the House of Representatives in joint public session, and the Congress, upon determination of the authenticity and due execution thereof in the manner provided by law, canvass the votes.
Sotto said Congress will also be tasked to proclaim the winners of the presidency and the vice presidency for the May 9, 2022 elections, which is expected to be done by May 27 or 28.
“Let the record state that the initialization report shows that for the national canvass for the positions of president and vice president, zero votes have been reflected,” Sotto said during the initialization of the CCS machines.
“Let the record show that the initialization process has been completed and that the CCS machine is now ready to receive the electronically transmitted certificates of canvas from the boards of canvassers from the provinces, cities, and overseas posts. And this concludes the initialization process,” he added.
Also present to witness the initialization process were House Majority Leader Martin Romualdez, Deputy Speaker Abraham Tolentino, Cavite Rep. Jesus Crispin Remulla, official representatives of the Commission on Elections, the lawyers and representatives of the presidential and vice presidential candidates, the political parties, and the citizens’ arms.
Source: Philippines News Agency