MANILA — Early, unofficial returns showed President Corazon Aquino's centrist coalition headed for a majority in the Philippine Senate in voting today for a new U.S.-style Congress.
It was the first election of her Administration.
Polls closed at 4 p.m. after nine hours of voting by an estimated 90% turnout of the 26 million eligible Filipino voters. Eighty-four candidates ran for the 24-seat Senate and 1,899 for the 200-seat House of Representatives.
Maj. Gen. Renato de Villa, national police commander, said balloting was relatively peaceful, despite at least 15 election-related killings and 113 cases of vote-stealing over the last 24 hours.
Official returns are not expected for at least a week.
Substantial Laban Showing
The private National Movement for Free Elections, conducting its own unofficial count, said scattered returns from 38 of the country's 104,544 precincts showed 19 Senate candidates from Aquino's Laban, or People Power, ticket among the top 24 vote-getters.