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Duterte races to early lead

DAVAO City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte and Senator Ferdinand Marcos Jr. maintained the lead over their rivals in the presidential and vice presidential races, based on a partial unofficial count released Monday night.

Turnout was a high 80 percent, the Comelec said.

Results transmitted to the Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster ng Pilipinas-Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (KBP-PPCRV) Transparency Server after the polls closed Monday night gave Duterte a commanding lead over his rivals, with 11,510,550 votes, ahead of Senator Grace Poe with 6,534,246, and administration candidate Manuel Roxas II with 6,459,788 votes.

Memory aid. Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte checks his vote against a list he brought with him to Daniel Aguinaldo National High School in Davao City, where he cast his vote on Monday.  Duterte, the wildly popular anti-establishment firebrand, was the early leader in the hotly contested national election. AFP 

With 67 percent of precincts reporting, Vice President Jejomar Binay was fourth with 3,898,409 votes, and Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago with 1,179,537.

In the vice presidential race, Marcos led with 10,595,809 votes, followed by Camarines Sur Rep. Leni Robredo with 9,698,760 votes.

Senator Alan Peter Cayetano came in at third with 4,042,460 votes while Senator Francis Escudero got 3,403,638 votes. 

They were followed by Senators Antonio Trillanes IV with 576,150 votes and Gregorio Honasan with 502,494 votes. 

Senatorial aspirants who made it to the top 12 were:

1. Former TESDA Director-General Joel Villanueva (13,920,690)

2. Sen. Pres. Franklin Drilon (13,677,848)

3. Sen. Vicente Sotto (13,124,118)

4. Former senator Panfilo Lacson (12,834,899)

5. Former senator Richard Gordon (12,791,021)

6. Former Philhealth director Risa Hontiveros (11,968,117)

7. Former senator Juan Miguel Zubiri (11,846,042)

8. Former senator Kiko Pangilinan (11,783,823)

9. Sarangani Rep. Manny Pacquiao (11,412,880)

10. Valenzuela Rep. Sherwin Gatchalian (11,330,066)

11. Senator Ralph Recto (10,574,584)

12. Former Justice Sec. Leila de Lima (10,397,377)

Senatorial bets in the crucial Top 13-15 spots were:

13. Former Metro Manila Development Authority chairman Francis Tolentino (9,552,483) 

14. Senator Sergio Osmena (9,522,476)

15. Leyte Rep. Martin Romualdez (9,056,512)

Following his early lead based on the partial unofficial polls, Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte told a GMA7 interview that he would begin assembling his Cabinet if he wins.

He would not claim victory, however.

“My habit is that I place myself in a 50-50 position in all the elections in my life. I do not listen to the news, I shut myself [off], I always believe in destiny,” he added. 

Saying that the 2016 polls have been divisive, Duterte said that he would soon reach out to his rivals after the polls. 

“We should be healing now,” he said.

He would not comment on his lead, saying “there’s always a time for everything.”

He added that he would never become president by cheating.

Duterte’s campaign team, however, said they were confident of a landslide victory.

“Looking at the exit polls and looking at the field reports that we are getting, it would seem that Mayor Duterte will parallel if not surpass the victory of President [Benigno] Aquino in 2010,” said Lito Banayo of Duterte’s camp.

Marcos also declined to comment on the partial results.

“It’s good to see that we’re leading in the numbers, but it’s still quite early. We’re not even halfway yet,” he told GMA 7. “It’s not over until it’s over.”

The Roxas camp said they remain confident that the fight for the presidency is not yet over.

“Obviously, we have to admit that the initial results are discouraging, but we know it’s not over,” said his spokesman, Akbayan Rep. Ibarra Gutierrez.

“We haven’t even reached 50 percent so there’s still time to make up for the ground that we have to cover,” he added. 

As of 8:05 p.m., 60.02 percent of election returns were already transmitted to the Transparency server.

In the Comelec Main Server, meanwhile, which would be the basis of the official canvass for the National Board of Canvassers, 41,469 election returns or 44.23 percent out of 93,754 election returns were already transmitted as of 8:12 p.m.

Under the existing system for canvassing the results, the election returns (ERs), which are sourced from the vote counting machines, are transmitted to the municipal board of canvassers and city board of canvassers, which will use them as the basis for the canvassing of votes.

These results will then be transmitted to the provincial board of canvassers to come up with provincial certificates of canvass, which will be used by the national board of canvassers to canvass the votes for senators and party-list groups.

Votes for president and vice president, meanwhile, will be canvassed by the two houses of Congress.

Congress is expected to convene as the national board of canvassers on May 23.

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