MANILA, Philippines – The Congressional Oversight Committee on the Automated Election System (AES) wants to inquire on the alleged discrepancies of data in vote counting machines (VCM) in some regions used in the May 2016 elections.
Senator Francis Escudero said a former poll official approached him last year and told him that there were discrepancies in the data in the backup and main drives of the VCMs.
“May printout kaming nakuha, pero mas magandang mangaling sa testigo mismo na nagsasabing hindi mirror image yung back-up drive nung main drive,” said Escudero.
(We got hold of a printout, but it would be better if it actually came from the witness who will confirm that the backup drive of the main drive is not a mirror image.)
One of the features of the VCMs that were used in the May 2016 elections was that once a physical ballot is fed in the VCM, it will scan the ballot and will store the image in the SD card.
The committee wants to know how many backup drives were able to transmit and their possible implications on the result of the votes.
“Ang sunod na tanong ilan ba sa backup drive ang ginamit dahil kung hindi siya accurate picture o carbon copy ng main drive e mag-iiba ang result to a certain degree to what extent hindi ko alam,” said Escudero.
(The next question is how many of the backup drives were used because if it’s not an accurate picture or carbon copy of the main drive, the result will change to a certain degree. To what extent, I don’t know.)
But despite this, outgoing acting poll Chairman Christian Robert Lim assures there are no discrepancies in the data based on their official records.
“Ang sa akin kapag hindi magmatch yung main at backup, ibig sabihin hindi makalabas ng resulta ang machine. Medyo kakaiba iyon, but we are confident that this system was tested,” said Lim.
(In my opinion, if the main and backup do not match, it means the machine would not have been able to release results. It’s uncommon but we are confident that this system was tested.)
The committee clarified that the inquiry has nothing to do with the protest of former senator and losing vice presidential candidate Bongbong Marcos.
Marcos claimed that there is an anomaly when he presented some of the copies of ballot images from the 2016 elections. – Nel Maribojoc | UNTV News & Rescue