Defeated Manila mayoral candidate Alfredo Lim filed additional evidence before the Commission on Elections (Comelec) against Joseph “Erap” Estrada for allegedly buying a massive amount of votes in order to win the May 2016 Manila mayoral election.
Attorney Renato dela Cruz, a lawyer of Lim, said that the pieces of additional evidence in the form of affidavits would further strengthen their claim that Estrada used city government programs in order to buy votes for the May 9 election.
One of the programs that Estrada allegedly used was to hire 1,000 employees for Manila’s department of social welfare, Dela Cruz said in a phone interview.
The hired employees allegedly received P5,000 every month from January to June 30, 2015, without doing any work, according to Lim’s witnesses Jaime Ortega and Victorino Andres.
Lim’s camp also slammed Estrada’s alleged signing of an ordinance which allows the local government to give away goodies to senior citizens of Manila. Lim’s attorney also accused Estrada of giving away electronic tablets to public school teachers.
Dela Cruz said that these actions from the Estrada administration violate the election code because they happened before the elections took place.
“While in the guise of helping the Manila Department of Social Welfare, the act of respondent Estrada was in gross violation of the provision of section 261(a) of the Omnibus Election Code,” Lim’s camp noted in a separate statement.
For these reasons, Lim’s camp has already filed an extreme urgent motion to suspend the effect of the proclamation of Joseph Estrada as the mayor of Manila which happened on May 27.
Estrada defeated Lim in a tightly-contested mayoral race, winning with a small margin of just 2,865 votes.
Estrada retained his position as mayor after beating Lim with a slim margin of 2,865 votes.