Mrs. Arroyo captured the presidency through her allies in Congress.
Although there were strong indications that the Certificates of Canvass (COCs) were dubious, the canvass committee insisted that the law did not allow them to look deeper, which wasn’t true. This, even when public interest demanded it.
The canvass committee could have looked at other documents and compared them to the COCs but it chose not to. It could have spent its time looking for the truth rather than arguing over interpretations of the law but it didn’t. Instead, it peddled the line that the “proper venue” for seeking the truth was the Presidential Electoral Tribunal (PET), not the canvass committee whose job (so they interpreted) was limited to proclaiming a winner, questionable documents nothwithstanding. “Proper venue” became the coven’s incantation.