COMELEC orders repair of defective PCOS machines

  • US Marines testify at Philippines murder trial of colleague

    US Marines testify at Philippines murder trial of colleague

    AFP News
    US Marines testify at Philippines murder trial of colleague

    Four US Marines took the witness stand Tuesday at the murder trial of their comrade accused of killing a local transgender woman in the Philippines, lawyers who attended the closed-door proceedings said. The American servicemen were asked to testify on what the defendant, Private First Class Joseph Pemberton, had told them shortly after the October 24, 2014 killing, the lawyers said. "I think I may have killed a he or she," Lance Corporal Michael Rose told the court when asked what Pemberton …

  • Philippines says prepared to help boatpeople

    Philippines says prepared to help boatpeople

    AFP News
    Philippines says prepared to help boatpeople

    The Philippines said Tuesday it was ready to help Rohingya and Bangladeshi boatpeople, as its Southeast Asian neighbours faced outrage for turning them away. The Philippines is obliged to help the migrants, many of whom are fleeing persecution, because it is party to the 1951 United Nations convention on refugees, Justice Secretary Leila de Lima and foreign department spokesman Charles Jose both said. "We have the commitment and the obligation to extend humanitarian assistance to these asylum …

  • Robert De Niro opens Asia's 1st Nobu Hotel in Philippines

    Robert De Niro opens Asia's 1st Nobu Hotel in Philippines

    Associated Press
    Robert De Niro opens Asia's 1st Nobu Hotel in Philippines

    Robert de Niro and his business partners formally opened Asia's first Nobu Hotel in Manila on Monday as the luxury brand gears up for global expansion. The 321-room hotel within the bayside casino and ... …

  • Colombia's FARC rebels suspend ceasefire over air strike

    Colombia's FARC rebels suspend ceasefire over air strike

    AFP News
    Colombia's FARC rebels suspend ceasefire over air strike

    Peace talks to end Colombia's five-decade conflict were plunged into fresh crisis Friday after FARC guerrillas suspended their unilateral ceasefire in response to a government air strike that killed 26 rebels. The December ceasefire announcement by the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) had raised hopes that the two-year-old peace negotiations were approaching a breakthrough. On April 15, the day after the ambush, a furious President Juan Manuel Santos ordered the military to …

  • IS suicide bomber attacks Saudi Shiite mosque, killing 21

    IS suicide bomber attacks Saudi Shiite mosque, killing 21

    AFP News
    IS suicide bomber attacks Saudi Shiite mosque, killing 21

    An Islamic State group suicide bomber attacked a Shiite mosque in Sunni-ruled Saudi Arabia on Friday, killing 21 people and wounding 81 in an assault that threatens to fan sectarian tensions. The bomber struck during the main weekly prayers in Eastern Province, where assailants linked to the Sunni extremist IS killed seven members of the minority Shiite community in November. The interior ministry said a suicide bomber detonated a bomb at the mosque in Kudeih, in the Shiite-majority city of …

By Mark Pere Madrona, VERA Files

With just five days before the midterm polls, the Commission on Elections announced that defective precinct count optical scan (PCOS) machines should be transported immediately to the poll body’s warehouse in Cabuyao, Laguna for repair.

The order came amidst reports that some PCOS machines malfunctioned during the final series of testings done around the country since last week.

In a statement, Julio Thaddeus Hernan, director of Comelec’s administrative services department, instructed Comelec field offices to coordinate with Airfreight 2100 (Air21) and 2GO Express Logistics in sending the defective machines back to Laguna. The two freight and cargo forwarding firms are tasked to distribute voting machines and other election paraphernalia as part of their P 1.4 billion contract with the poll body.

Local Comelec offices can bring the defective machines to an Air21 or 2Go branch within their area. They can also ask representatives from the said two firms to retrieve the machines from the polling center where it is currently stored.

Under the supervision of concerned election officers or the provincial election supervisors, Air21 and 2Go will then transport the machines to the Comelec warehouse in Cabuyao, Laguna. The facility is managed by the poll body’s Project Management Office.

Repaired/replacement PCOS machines will then be turned over to the Packing and Shipping Committee of Comelec for documentation before being brought back to Air21 and 2Go for dispatching. Hernan emphasized that the total inventory of PCOS machines in affected areas should be maintained.

Meanwhile, members of the Board of Election Inspectors (BEIs) can use their back-up PCOS units for Election Day, while repaired/replaced voting machines can be used as the backup instead. Hernan noted that there are 156 PCOS units stored in their Laguna facility which can be distributed to requesting Comelec field offices.

The testing of PCOS machine around the country since has been marred by hardware glitches, including the machine’s failure to start properly and the mismatch between PCOS vote count and manual tally. There was also some confusion among school officials on what to do with defective PCOS machines.

Rosarito Septimo, principal of Mandaluyong High School, complained that there were no instructions on how to handle malfunctioning PCOS machines. “Those should be replaced. Or at least, re-testings should be done,” he said. His school expects around 10,000 voters on May 13.

According to Bobby Tuazon, co-convener of Automated Election System (AES) Watch, these developments “contradict the self-proclaimed success of COMELEC Chair Brillantes.” His group is pushing for a full parallel manual count on Election Day “to determine the accuracy of the Smartmatic-marketed automation technology.”

(VERA Files is put out by senior journalists taking a deeper look at current issues. Vera is Latin for “true”.)

Editor’s note:Yahoo Philippines encourages responsible comments that add dimension to the discussion. No bashing or hate speech, please. You can express your opinion without slamming others or making derogatory remarks.

  • US renews travel warning to Mindanao
    US renews travel warning to Mindanao

    The US State Department renewed its warning about the risks of travel to the Philippines, in particular to the Sulu archipelago, certain regions and cities of Mindanao and the southern Sulu Sea area. In an update on Wednesday of a travel warning it issued Nov. 20, 2014, the State Department said US citizens should continue to defer non-essential travel to the Sulu archipelago due to the high threat of kidnapping of international travelers and violence linked to insurgency and terrorism there. …

  • Phl gains support for APEC Action Agenda
    Phl gains support for APEC Action Agenda

    The Philippine initiative to put the interests of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) front and center in global and regional trade has made significant progress following the conclusion on Thursday of the 2nd APEC Senior Officials’ Meeting (SOM2) and Related Meetings in Boracay, Aklan. Called “The Boracay Action Agenda to Globalize MSMEs,” the Philippine proposal calls for a host of specific, concrete and practical interventions that APEC economies can implement to provide MSMEs wider …

  • Phl to join Bangkok meet on Rohingya crisis next week
    Phl to join Bangkok meet on Rohingya crisis next week

    The Philippines will join a 15-nation meeting in Bangkok, Thailand next week to address the migration crisis involving thousands of Rohingyas who escaped persecution in Myanmar and Bangladesh. Justice Secretary Leila de Lima bared this yesterday after meeting with United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) representative to the Philippines Bernard Kerblat. In an interview, De Lima said the Philippine government has been invited to the meeting. …

Poll Choice Options