The Robredo People’s Council of Negros Occidental and Bacolod City said they are alarmed by the Vote Counting Machine (VCM) malfunctions, massive vote buying and other campaign violations and malpractices that occurred with wanton impunity during the campaign period and the May 9 polls.
All of these served to diminish the credibility of the electoral process, the RPC statement signed by Rafael Coscolluela – RPC Negros convenor and Jessie Suarez – RPC Bacolod convenor that was released Wednesday, May 18, said.
They said they are still keenly observing the outcome of the random manual audit being done now by the Commission on Elections (Comelec) in Manila.
“We are interested in comparing the results of the random manual audit with the election returns and the transparency server results,” they stressed.
They also cited the “evasive attitude” of the Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (PPCRV) chairperson to conduct a random manual audit on machine generated election returns (ERs) to be compared to the electronically transmitted ERs.
“There are 757 legislative districts nationwide, hence all 757 clustered precincts will be covered by the random manual audit. The compared results of the random manual audit with the election returns and the transparency server results will determine our stand regarding the outcome of the national election,” they said.
They said there were many questionable circumstances before the May 9 national election such as the failure of the Comelec to have the VCM source code, the source code of the central backup and transparency servers that add up each machine’s count, certified by professional bodies as required by the automated election law.
The printing of the official ballots was done without the presence of candidates’ watchers before the election, they added.
They are urging the Comelec to undertake the needed measures to resolve these recurring irregularities and issues so that future electoral processes become truly free, fair, honest and credible.
“COMELEC must be held accountable for ensuring the sanctity of the ballot and protecting the right of every qualified citizen to vote freely without fear nor harm,” they added.*