Former Comelec Commissioner Gus Lagman
MANILA, Philippines – “Not democratic” This is how former Commission on Elections (Comelec) Commissioner Gus Lagman described the proposal of President Rodrigo Duterte regarding the establishment of a revolutionary form of government.
Lagman said, doing so would take away from the voters their freedom and rights to choose the leader of the country.
According to the former Comelec commissioner, the government should allow its people to elect leaders in accordance with the proper election process.
“That would be bad because I think the people should have the freedom, the privilege and the right to elect its leaders . . revolutionary government is not democratic..,” Lagman said.
On the other hand, Malacañang said the President will not push through with his proposal without sufficient basis and proper consultation with all sectors of the society.
“He has said that he will declare a revolutionary government only if and when the destabilization attempts against the government will lead to anarchy so in other words, he simply laying the premise of what could happen. The President again and again has all access to information and he may have his own reasons for doing so,” Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella said.
Meanwhile, Lagman stands by his recommendation to use an Automated Election System with Enhanced Transparency and Accuracy (AES- ETA ) in the next election in the country.
Such a system combines the automated and manual precinct counting. Through his, Lagman explained, the results of the voting will become more transparent.
“We don’t have to automate the precinct counting because it only takes 5 to 12 hours anyway. What we should automate is the 40-day canvassing that follows the precinct counting,” Lagman said. “That’s not what we’ve been doing in the last 3 elections, we automated the precinct counting and like I said 10 billion is the cause and we lost the transparency.”
According to Comelec spokesperson Director James Jimenez, Namfrel was given the chance to present the said system in 2015.
Jimenez also clarified that it is the Comelec Advisory Council that approves the type of system that will be used in elections.
He explained that the Comelec follows a bidding process before implementing a new system.
“It’s unfair to say we ignored it because, in fact, the Comelec set up a pilot test precisely for that system. We called media together, we called observers, we called lawyers to look at the system. The test turned out to be less than ideal,” said Jimenez.
“The 2010, 2013 and especially the 2016 elections their results have stood the test of multiple protests. 2016 was, in fact, hailed as one of the best elections we’ve ever had,” he added.
The Comelec director noted the PCOS machines used for the elections also have audit trails to ensure the transparency of the elections in the country. – Aiko Miguel | UNTV News & Rescue
Bataan LGU readies power failure measures for canvassing of BKSE votes
Emergency lights on standby in case of power failure during the canvassing of votes.
BATAAN, Philippines – The local government of Limay together with the Commission on Elections (Comelec) is ready to impose emergency measures in case power lines are cut during the canvassing of votes for the barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) polls Monday, May 14.
“Sa apat na lugar ay mayroon kaming automatic generators. Sa walang generator mayroon kaming emergency lights na ibibigay,” said Rosalinda Atienza, the municipal treasurer.
(We have automatic generators in four areas. In areas without generators we will provide emergency lights.)
Atienza also assured that they have provided service vehicles for watchers and the electoral board of canvassers assigned in remote polling places. They will be accompanied by members of the Philippine National Police (PNP) for the safe conduct of canvassing.
Overall, there are 483 teachers serving 161 clustered precincts in 12 barangays in Limay.
Limay, Bataan alone has 50,169 registered voters while the entire province of Bataan has 689, 083 registered voters. — Alfredo Ocampo | UNTV News & Rescue
Baguio City activates express lanes for senior citizens, PWDs, pregnant women
Senior citizens searching for their polling precincts
BAGUIO CITY, Philippines – The Commission on Elections (Comelec) has activated express lanes in polling areas to cater to senior citizens, persons with disability (PWDs) and pregnant voters Monday, May 14, for the conduct of the barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan elections.
According to Baguio City Election Officer John Paul Martin, a total of 58 precincts were designated with priority lanes in the city.
“Approach the board of election tellers at bibigyan sila ng express lane,” he said.
Members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) are in place to secure the voters and conduct of the election.
Comelec reminds the voting public that polling precincts will close at exactly 3:00p.m.
Baguio City has a total of 154,914 registered voters expected to flock in polling areas this election day. — Grace Doctolero | UNTV News & Rescue
15 government, elected officials arrested over violation of Comelec gun ban
MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine National Police (PNP) arrested a total of 1,118 individuals since the Commission on Elections (Comelec) gun ban took effect on April 14.
A large number of arrests involved civilians at 1,043; of which 24 were security guards; 15 were government and elected officials; six soldiers; six policemen and 10 members of threat groups.
PNP Directorate for Operations PCSupt. Ma-O Aplasca said they are intensifying operations in all checkpoints across the country especially in areas with high presence of threat groups.
“PNP has created a national task force to ensure the forthcoming election is safe and secure…We are going to deploy 163,000 personnel nationwide,” he said.
So far, authorities have seized over 600 firearms and gun replicas and a number of bladed weapons, grenades, IEDs and ammunition.
Meanwhile, the PNP has recorded 24 election-related deaths. Only three from the 76 suspects have been arrested.
According to PNP Spokesman Police Chief Superintendent John Bulalacao said police personnel are on standby to serve as board of election tellers (BET) in the absence of duty teachers especially in areas with high political tension.
“In ARMM meron nang personnel doon. Who have undergone training already,” the PNP spokesperson assured. – Lea Ylagan | UNTV News & Rescue
Arrests in line with Comelec Gun Ban (PNP)
Government/elected officials 15
Other LEA 3
Security Guard 24
Foreign national 2
Threath Group 10