LOOK: Ballot retrieval for VP vote recount begins in CamSur

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, January 23) — The Commission on Elections (COMELEC) in Camarines Sur has started retrieving ballot boxes from the province, in response to the poll protest filed by former Senator Bongbong Marcos.

A total of 538 ballot boxes from Districts 1 and 2 of Camarines Sur arrived on Tuesday, marking the start of the vote recount for the poll protest of Marcos.

The ballot boxes came from the towns of Cabusao, Sipocot, Lupi, Ragay, Del Gallego, Libmanan, Pamplona, Pasacao, San Fernando, Milaor, Gainza, and Minalabac.

Twenty-five more towns have yet to deliver their ballot boxes to the provincial COMELEC office. 

Marcos lost to Vice President Leni Robredo at the 2016 national elections by just 263,473 votes.

Camarines Sur, a known bailiwick of Robredo as she hails from Bicol, was one of three pilot provinces decided upon by the Presidential Electoral Tribunal (PET) in its partial grant of Marcos' plea to recount the ballots.

Robredo won by a landslide in the province, garnering more than 660,000 votes, while Marcos got about 40,000.

Other provinces in the pilot recount are Iloilo and Negros Oriental.

Earlier, Marcos identified the three provinces as "best exemplifying fraud or irregularities" in his protest brief.

Robredo also listed three provinces in her own counter-protest brief: Capiz, Sulu, and North Cotabato.

Her camp maintained the election protest of Marcos is based on general allegations and manufactured evidence designed to sway the results in his favor.

PET has required Marcos to pay P66 million and Robredo P15 million in two tranches to fund their protests and counter-protests. A petitioner needs to pay P500 per contested precinct.