House Speaker Lord Allan Velasco on Sunday assured the nation that the canvassing of votes and proclamation of winners in the recently concluded presidential and vice-presidential elections will be “expeditious, transparent, and credible.”
He gave the assurance as Congress and the Senate are set to hold a joint public session this coming week to convene as the National Board of Canvassers as mandated by the Constitution to count the votes cast and proclaim the country’s next President and Vice President.
“Congress, sitting as the NBOC, is duty-bound to make sure that the entire process of vote counting and transmission of results will be done expeditiously and with utmost transparency and integrity,” he said.
The legislature through Velasco and Senate President Vicente Sotto III is set to proclaim the duly elected President and Vice President on May 27.
“We will perform our constitutional duty quickly and efficiently. We will be combining accuracy and speed for us to meet our committed timeline,” Velasco said.
The vote canvassing would proceed despite a pending disqualification case against presumptive President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. before the Supreme Court.
“Our duty to canvass is mandated by the Constitution itself. Nothing therein says that this duty is suspended while a case, which has already been dismissed by the Commission on Elections, is pending with the Supreme Court,” he said, adding that “We are bound to proclaim the winning President and Vice President, and uphold the will of the people with dispatch.”
The House of Representatives and the Senate resume their separate sessions to adopt a joint resolution convening Congress to a joint session and act as NBOC for the two highest elective posts of the land.
Each chamber is expected to formally create a contingent to the Joint Committee that will do the actual count of votes cast for President and Vice President during the May 9 polls, starting May 24.
Each contingent will have seven regular members and four alternate members. The Speaker and the Senate President shall designate the chairperson of each panel.