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Technical service provider bidding must be open to entities with global experience – PPCRV

by Maris Federez   |   Posted on Wednesday, May 15th, 2019

Command center of election watchdog, Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (PPCRV)

The Commission on Elections (Comelec) earlier admitted that the number of problems encountered in the use of vote counting machines (VCM) during the May 13 polls has increased.

Monday’s poll has recorded more than 900 technical glitches, compared with only 188 recorded in the 2016 Presidential Elections.

Aside from this, around 2,000 SD cards have been found to also be problematic on the day of the elections.

The Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (PPCRV) said that should the Comelec decides to take in a new service provider, it should be an entity with strong technical skills and know-how.  This is to prevent the occurrence of the same problem in the next elections.

“I think we should open it to all bidders that have global experiences. I think it’s better that more tech experts are part of the bidding process para talagang matanong lahat ng dapat itanong bago mag award [so that all questions will be cleared before the awarding (of new provider) is done],” said Myla Villanueva, PPCRV spokesperson.

Meanwhile, Senator Koko Pimentel said the Joint Congressional Oversight Committee on the Automated Elections System will conduct an investigation on the recent election glitches.

“I have already coordinated with the House panel chair, Cong. Sherwin Tugna, and we have set the schedule on June 4,” said Pimentel.

The Senator will ask Comelec whether the poll body had conducted a thorough checking on the machines.

“What happened? Maybe the standards and the tests were too low or the persons that were certifying the tests are too arbitrary or untrained or ignorant. So, tanungin natin lahat iyan [we will ask these things (to them)],” Pimentel added.

Comelec, on the other hand, assured that the machines used in the elections had gone thru thorough inspection. (with details from Mai Bermudez) /mbmf

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Youth groups stage protest vs Cardema’s congressional bid as Duterte Youth rep

by Maris Federez   |   Posted on Wednesday, June 19th, 2019

Youth groups congregated in front of the office of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to protest against the congressional bid of former National Youth Commission (NYC) chairman Ronald Cardema under the Duterte Youth party list.

Kabataan Partylist, Youth Act Now Against Tyranny and other youth groups voiced their opposition to Cardema’s bid and appeal to Comelec to junk the former official’s petition for a seat in Congress.

This, they say, will give Comelec the opportunity to prove that the last election was indeed fraud-free.

The group stressed that Cardema is not qualified to represent a youth group.

Comelec commissioners Rowena Guanzon and Luie Tito Guia had earlier stated Cardema cannot take a seat in Congress under the Duterte Youth party list for several grounds:

  1. that Cardema was not able to comply with the submission of documents when the Duterte Youth filed their Certificate of Nomination and Acceptance (CONA); and
  2. that Cardema already past the age requirement of 30 for a youth representative

Comelec is yet to come up with a final decision. (with reports from Aiko Miguel) /mbmf

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Comelec delays decision until petition vs Cardema is resolved

by Maris Federez   |   Posted on Wednesday, June 19th, 2019

Former National Youth Commission Chair Ronald Cardema

The Commission on Elections (Comelec) has yet to come up with a final decision on the case of National Youth Commission (NYC) chairman Ronald Cardema as a new petition has been filed before the poll body against his nomination as Duterte Youth representative.

Former Comelec chair Sixto Brillantes Jr. and election lawyer Romulo Macalintal on Monday (June 17) filed a petition before the poll body to reject Cardema’s substitution bid.

Comelec First Division resumed hearing on Wednesday.  

“Pangalawa na po ito at pirmado ng mga Abugadong si Atty Sixto Brillantes at si Atty Romulo Macalintal. Dahil dito may hearing po ang First Division,” Commissioner Rowena Guanzon said.

She added, “maaaring ma- consolidate o isasabay na ang pagdedesisyon sa mga kasong ito para mapadali ang pag- resolusyon.”

Guanzon also said that they will not release their final decision until the hearings on all the petitions against Cardema’s bid for a congressional seat.

Guanzon and Commissioner Luie Tito Guia also stressed that Cardema cannot assume the position as the representative of Duterte Youth because he and the party-list group were not able to comply with the submission of documents when they filed their Certificate of Nomination and Acceptance (CONA).

The two Comelec officials added that Cardema is already past the required age of 30.

Under Republic Act 7941 or the Party-list System Act, youth party-list representatives must be within 25 and 30 age range.

Cardema’s camp, on the other hand, had earlier reiterated that Duterte Youth does not only represent the young people but also the young professionals that is why he is still qualified to sit as its first nominee. (with reports from Aiko Miguel) /mbmf

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PNP returns to normal operations as election period ends

by Maris Federez   |   Posted on Thursday, June 13th, 2019

The Philippine National Police has lowered its alert status as the election period comes to an end.

PNP spokesperson PCol. Bernard Banac said only a few areas that have reports of the presence of threat groups such as the Abu Sayyaf, Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters, and communist groups, are still on full alert.

These include Police Regional Office 9, 10, 11, 12, 13 and the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.

Banac, however, stressed that these areas are not under security threat.

“Wala namang security threat sa naturang mga lugar, nakafull alert pa din ang mga lugar na yun dahil martial law,” Banac said.

Banac added the past election period has been generally peaceful and validated election-related incidents had been low as compared with the 2016 Presidential Elections. (with reports from Lea Ylagan) /mbmf

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