Leni backtracks on vote-buying gaffe, says she’s against it

Leni backtracks on vote-buying gaffe, says she’s against it

By Junex Doronio

October 27, 2021

LAPU-LAPU CITY, Cebu – A day after self-proclaimed “true opposition” presidential aspirant Vice President Leni Robredo said it’s okay to take the money but still vote for their preferred candidate, the Commission on Elections (Comelec) on Wednesday maintained that vote-buying is illegal,

Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez pointed out that regardless of “financial situation or noble intentions,” vote buying is still an election offense.

“I disagree with the notion of taking the money and voting according to your conscience. Vote buying is an election offense regardless of financial situation or noble intentions,” Jimenez tweeted.

Robredo has apparently backpedalled and claimed that she never condones vote-buying but just pointing out realities on the ground.

“‘Yung sinabi ko kahapon, ‘yung vote buying mali ‘yun. ‘Yung vote buying mali ‘yun pero over the years, very rampant siya dito sa atin. In fact, kahit dito sa atin, very rampant ang vote buying… ‘yung frustrating dito sa lahat kasi hindi maayos ‘yung pag-i-implement ng regulations about vote buying (Vote buying is wrong, however, the practice is very rampant over the years even here. What’s frustrating is that the regulations against vote buying are not being implemented properly.),” Robredo said during a press conference in Naga City, Camarines Sur.

Howevcr, Jimenez admitted that while vote-buying is illegal, it is hard to nab the perpetrators because it is not done in public, and nowadays could even be done through electronic transfers.

“Di dapat ginagawa, at di dapat sina-suggest yan sa mga botante (That should not be practiced and that should not be suggested to the voters.),” the Comelec spokesperson said in reaction to Robredo’s earlier statement. (ai/mtvn)

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