Everything you've wanted to know about RP politics, but were afraid to ask.

Opinions on poll automation

Posted by akosistella on May 11, 2010


Rage against the machines
THERE’S THE RUB By Conrado de Quiros

I’M WRITING THIS THE DAY BEFORE THE elections and don’t quite know what’s going to happen. As I said before, ours is a very strange case. It’s not that the surveys could be wrong about the elections, it’s that the elections could be wrong about the surveys.

I never thought I’d be saying this—truly GMA has stood everything on its head—but this is the first time I’ve really been thankful for the surveys. Particularly with the Comelec being what it is, and particularly with automation being what it is feared to be, can you imagine this election taking place without the surveys? Anyone could be the winner—including GMA herself by the voters insisting on making her stay—and no one would be the wiser. Or since everyone would be the wiser, no one would be in any position to protest. Or since everyone would be in a position to protest, which really means the same thing, no one would be in a position to do something about it.

Click Conrado de Quiros

Poll automation lessons
AS I WRECK THIS CHAIR By William M. Esposo

After all the glitches that were encountered in this election, it is now clear that Gus Lagman and all those who were advocating for partial automation were right. And all those like Teddyboy Locsin and Dick Gordon who embraced the full automation mode we used should accept their mistakes.

It is too early to say whether we will have credible election results. Let’s hope we do because the possible consequences if we do not are scary, to say the least. The way the public has been conditioned by the many fumbles in the automation process — fueled by all the speculations on automated cheating — hardly allows the Comelec (Commission on Elections) elbow room for error. A major failure can only sharpen public perception that this poll automation was conceived to perpetuate the status quo

via William M. Esposo.

Whoever the winner is, let us rally around him
POSTSCRIPT By Federico D. Pascual Jr.

CLARK FIELD (PLDT/WeRoam) — Despite our being a nation of procrastinators who dash to the finish line only at the last minute, it seems that by and large we have survived yesterday’s experience with a computerized gizmo touted to speed up the vote count a zillion times.

The elections saw some candidates and campaigners getting shot, the usual thugs vandalizing or running off with the counting machines, some PCOS (a new word added to our vocabulary) units conking out or rejecting ballots — but sweating voters still stood in line to be part of that historic first semi-automated election in this country.

Click Federico Pascual Jr.

Waste of P11B in taxpayers’ money
FRONTLINE By Ninez Cacho-Olivares

Comelec and its partner, Smartmatic, aren’t likely to admit that the conduct of 2010 automated polls was a big mess, and a failure in automation.

It is almost certain that all the reported mess in various precincts nationwide, whether it was the breakdown of the precinct count optical scan (PCOS) machines, or their non-functioning machines which led to more and more delays for the voters to exercise their right, the disenfranchisement of many voters, and even oversized ballots, plus the wrong ballots surfacing in certain precincts, along with many more instances of snafus, is going to be dismissed as “isolated incidents,” and not reflective of the “success” of automated polls nationwide.

Click Ninez Cacho-Olivares

Surviving election day
AT LARGE By Rina Jimenez-David

AS I WRITE THIS, THE FAMILY HAS JUST ARrived from the Mayamot (Antipolo) Elementary School where we have cast our votes for the last 20 years or so. We left the school bathed in sweat, hair disheveled but holding up proudly our index fingers marked with the unmistakable purple indelible ink, a sign that we had done our civic duty.

It was also a badge of perseverance. We left the house past seven (no thanks to one member who took her time getting out of bed and showering— you know who you are) and arrived at the school after hurdling terrible traffic caused mainly by people lining the sides of Sumulong Highway selling bottled water and giving away sample ballots. We could barely make out the school’s entrance, since it was hidden by a virtual waterfall of streamers and posters hung from power lines. Walking from where we parked our vehicle, we waded through piles of discarded sample ballots, flyers, posters and other election paraphernalia. More campaign volunteers blocked our way, and it was a struggle just reaching the place where our clustered precinct was to be found.

Click Rina Jimenez David


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