MANILA – The Congress on Wednesday proclaimed former senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. as the country's new president and Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte as vice president following the fastest canvassing in the country's election history.
The House and Senate, acting as the National Board of Canvassers (NBOC), approved the joint canvassing committee report and adopted the accompanying resolution of both chambers on the proclamation of the duly elected winners in the May 9 presidential and vice presidential elections.
The joint congressional canvassing committee, confirmed that Marcos had won the presidency by a landslide 31,629,783 votes, or more than 16 million votes ahead of second placer presidential candidate Leni Robredo.
Duterte, on the other hand, also overwhelmingly won the vice presidential race in the Congress’ official count with 32,208,417 votes, or a huge margin of 22 million over her closest rival, Senator Francis Pangilinan.
Senate President Vicente Sotto III and Speaker Lord Allan Velasco proclaimed Marcos and Duterte as duly elected President and Vice President.
The declaration comes after a two-day official vote tally by the country's National Board of Canvassers.
House Majority Leader Martin Romualdez highlighted that the voter turnout during the May 9 polls was at a record-breaking 83.11 percent with more than 55 million voters.
"Indeed, our democracy is alive and vibrant! The ever-growing political interest shown by our electorate is symbolic of the people's clamor for change, prosperity, and progress," Romualdez said.
He noted that the Joint Committee canvassed a total of 171 certificates of canvass (CoCs), 132 of which were electronically transmitted to the Consolidated and Canvassing System (CCS) by the Board of Canvassers of provinces, cities, and overseas absentee voting countries, while 39 were physically delivered to the Senate from the Special Board of Canvassers for overseas absentee voting, local absentee voting, and detainee voting.
He urged Filipinos to put political divisiveness behind them and to support the newly proclaimed top leaders of the country.
“With the country reeling from the impact of a global pandemic and other major calamities and disasters, it was evident that the nation was divided as to what direction to take in order to move forward. But the majority has spoken. It is high time that we listen to their voice and uphold the outcome of our democratic process,” he said.
“Let us heal the wounds of political division, brace ourselves for the challenges ahead, and move forward as a strong and united Philippines. Let us be prepared to work harder for the nation and give our full support to the new leadership. At the end of the day, we are all Filipinos and we want nothing than to see our beloved nation chart its own course and ultimately triumph," he added.
The Marcos-Duterte UniTeam tandem won on a platform of unity, which will be the "stepping-stone" of the country’s recovery from the coronavirus pandemic.
Earlier, several world leaders including those from the US, China, Russia, Japan, Australia, South Korea and the European Union have congratulated Marcos on his win.
Following Congress' proclamation of Marcos as the president-elect, the transition period will begin leading to the inauguration on June 30.
Duterte, meanwhile, earlier announced that her inauguration is set for June 19.
Well planned canvassing, proclamation
The Philippine National Police (PNP) said the canvassing of votes and proclamation of Marcos and Duterte was without untoward incident.
"Organized, tahimik at mahusay ang pagka-plano sa (peaceful and well planned the) canvassing and proclamation," PNP directorate for operations chief Maj. Gen. Valeriano de Leon said on Thursday.
He said the PNP deployed enough Civil Disturbance and Management (CDM) personnel in anticipation of protest actions to ensure peace and order in the area.
Although there was an incident involving clashes between PNP CDM personnel and protesters, De Leon stated that the problem was addressed immediately and that the security preparations went as planned.
He lauded the PNP CDM members for handling the protesters with maximum tolerance.
The next focus, he said, will be the preparations for the inauguration of Marcos and Duterte next month.
Meanwhile, PNP officer-in-charge Lt. Gen Vicente Danao Jr. congratulated Marcos Jr. and Duterte for winning the May 9 presidential and vice presidential elections, respectively.
“I share the pride of all 225,000 officers, men and women of the Philippine National Police in expressing our sincerest congratulations to President-elect Ferdinand R Marcos Jr. and Vice President-elect Sara Duterte-Carpio on their official proclamation as the duly elected President and Vice President, respectively, of the Republic of the Philippines,” Danao said in a statement.
He said the PNP assured the next administration of its full support “as it continues to perform its duty of serving and protecting the Filipino people.”
“We shall remain ever faithful and loyal to the Constitution, the Flag, and the duly constituted authorities in dispensing our law enforcement and public safety duty,” he said. (with reports from Lloyd Caliwan/Priam Nepomuceno/PNA)