Macalintal to surrender lawyer's license if Robredo loses VP protest

CONFIDENT. Vice President Leni Robredo is joined by her lawyer Romulo Macalintal during a multisectoral Mass on April 2, 2018, the start of the VP protest ballot recount. Photo by LeAnne Jazul/Rappler

CONFIDENT. Vice President Leni Robredo is joined by her lawyer Romulo Macalintal during a multisectoral Mass on April 2, 2018, the start of the VP protest ballot recount.

Photo by LeAnne Jazul/Rappler

Veteran election lawyer Romulo Macalintal is quite convinced his client, Vice President Leni Robredo, will win the electoral protest filed against her. 

So sure is Macalintal of Robredo’s victory that he's even willing to bet his license as a lawyer. 

The Vice President’s legal counsel showed his confidence in a brief speech delivered at the end of a multisectoral Mass attended by Robredo, along with her legal team and supporters on Monday, April 2, the start of the ballot recount.

And I assure you, I will surrender my license as a lawyer kapag natalo si Vice President sa kasong ito (And I assure you, I will surrender my license as a lawyer if Vice President loses this case),” said Macalintal, earning him applause from the crowd.

Wala pong katalo-talo. And in two months’ time, malalaman po natin ang resulta,” he added. (This is sure victory. And in two months' time, we will know the results.) 

Macalintal also used the time to slam Robredo’s rival and electoral fraud accuser, former senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. The lawyer said an initially reluctant candidate with limited funds like Robredo would not have cheated in the 2016 polls. (READ: TIMELINE: Marcos-Robredo election case)

Kasi po laging sinasabi na nandaya daw po si Vice President. Eh reluctant candidate, mandadaya? Wala namang pera para mandaya. Bakit ganoon sa atin?” asked Macalintal.

(They are always saying the Vice President cheated. Why would a reluctant candidate cheat? But she does not have the money to cheat. Why are we like this?)

He also hit the tendency of candidates to allege cheating when they lose. Macalintal argued it is possible the winners were the ones who were cheated, but the tactics of their opponents just were not enough. 

Kapag lamang natalo, nadaya. Hindi ba puwedeng ang nanalo ang magreklamo na siya ang nadaya? (When they lose, they say they were cheated. Is it not possible for the winner to complain he or she was cheated?)…And the ways and means employed by the cheater were not good enough to overcome the vote lead of the winner, ‘di ba (right)?” said Macalintal.  

The Vice President’s camp is not the only one convinced about winning the electoral protest, however. Marcos’ lawyer Vic Rodriguez is also confident his client will win the case. 

But only the ballot recount – which may take months or even years to finish – will reveal the true winner. – Rappler.com

Mara Cepeda

Mara Cepeda writes about politics and women’s rights for Rappler. She covers the House of Representatives and the Office of the Vice President. Got tips? Send her an email at mara.cepeda@rappler.com or shoot her a tweet @maracepeda.

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