Earthquake and other calamities might cause failure of elections—Comelec
by Aileen Cerrudo | Posted on Thursday, April 25th, 2019
The Commission on Elections (Comelec) said failure of elections can be declared during an earthquake or other calamities.
Comelec Spokesperson Director James Jimenez said violence, terrorism, and cheating will also cause a failure of elections.
“Halimbawa walang balota, walang election obviously because elections cannot be held at all. Man-made problems, violence, people not showing up for instance or supplies not being delivered. Kapag hindi ka makapagsagawa ng halalan magkakaroon ka ng failure of elections (For example, there are no ballots. There will be no elections obviously, because elections cannot be held at all. Failure of elections will be declared),” he said.
Elections will also be suspended if the lives of voters will be put at risk.
“When there is a natural calamity such that the voting facilities or the polling places are damaged or are unsafe to use. Iyon magkakaroon ng failure of elections iyan (There will be failure of elections),” Jimenez adds.
However, Comelec clarified that failure of elections needs to undergo due process unless it is absolutely necessary to declare it.
Jimenez said that an election office will have to recommend it to Comelec and Comelec En banc will decide if they will declare a failure of elections.
“Hindi iyan automatic, hindi iyan madadaan sa buyo o madadaan sa ingay ng parties(That is not automatic. It cannot be declared just because a party demands it),” he said.
He also clarified that power outage is not a common reason to declare failure of elections because the Vote Counting Machines (VCM) that will be used have batteries.
There are also generator sets in polling areas in the country.
Comelec Field Officials are currently coordinating with power providers and power distributors to ensure there will be no power outage during elections.—Aileen Cerrudo (with reports from Aiko Miguel)
by Robie de Guzman | Posted on Tuesday, July 9th, 2019
Californians near the epicenter of Friday night’s 7.1-magnitude earthquake are staying cautious about more quakes as aftershocks continued in the following two days.
Friday’s earthquake was the largest to occur in California in nearly 20 years. This comes as the golden state had seen a 6.4-magnitude one on Thursday.
At the epicenter of the 7.1-magnitude earthquake — Searles Valley, cracks can be seen on surface of freeways. Underground water pipes were also damaged. In Trona, a nearby town with a population of 2,000 to 3,000, houses and buildings were damaged on different level.
The earthquake caused power outages and water cuts, which were still not fully recovered in some places after two days.
An earthquake shelter was established in the city of Ridgecrest 40 kilometers from Trona following the first earthquake.
Although Californians are no strangers to earthquakes, many are still anxious over the two strong shakes and choose to sleep in the shelter or inside their own vehicles at night.
“So this shelter has been set up by the America Red Cross of our partners that are helping us out here. It’s a evacuation shelter for individuals who have been displaced related to the earthquake that happened here in this area. We are providing food, shelter and information assistance and whatever we can provide for the community to help them to get through the current situation,” said Roy Vargas, leader of the shelter.
Vargas said although people are stressed, they are happy because the situation is getting better.
“Well, I think the general mood, of course, everyone is stressed, because of the situation that have happened. But overall, I think people are about is joy; they are happy because they are working towards getting better,” said Vargas.
Local police department warned residents to stay vigilant and advised every household to store three days of rations and batteries for flashlights in case of more severe quakes and relief supplies may take time to arrive. (REUTERS)
by Robie de Guzman | Posted on Monday, June 24th, 2019
A deep earthquake of magnitude 7.5 struck off the coasts of East Timor and Indonesia on Monday (June 24) with the shaking felt in Australia’s northern city of Darwin, about 700 km (435 miles) from the epicenter, but no damage was reported.
Witnesses in Darwin told of shaking and trembling, as they were evacuated out of buildings in the city center.
The quake, initially recorded at a magnitude of 7.2, hit out at sea at a depth of 220 km (136 miles), the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) said.
There is no tsunami threat because of the quake’s depth, the Hawaii-based Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said in a statement. (REUTERS)
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