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

Posts Tagged ‘ARMM’

Liberal Party questions ‘3M uncounted votes’

Posted by akosistella on June 4, 2010


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ALSO READ: Aquino beats Estrada in San Juan; null votes blamed

President, VP winner proclamations delayed

FILIPINOS are entitled to know the truth about those null votes. With all the complaints of irregularities documented during the last elections involving the automated system itself (e.g. the PCOS machines, the CF Cards, the ballots), why should we take Smartmatic and Comelec’s word that these null votes are the result of voters not having voted for any VP candidate, or resulted from an undershaded oval beside the VP Candidate’s name, or overvoting – meaning thes voters vote for more than the These PCOS machines are hardly perfect, and may have mistakenly not counted appropriately filled out ballots.

What’s suspicious is that those null votes where significantly huge in areas where Jojo Binay led the VP count by at least 10 percent. These was evident in 3 regions alone. Also, in the Mindanao area, there was an unusually high turnout of voters in the ARMM provinces reaching over 90 percent, w/c was more than the national average of 70 percent. Ask any statistician and they will tell you that it’s statistically impossiblethat a candidate would just get zero or 1 vote, as what happened to Sen. MAR Roxas in the last elections. It’s deja vu all over again! Didn’t FPJ have this same problem when he ran in the 2004 presidential elections vs Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, and he too received zero votes exactly in these very same areas that Roxas has been lagging behind Binay?

Congress as the National Board of Canvassers has the power to decide to count those votes. The legislators made the canvassing rules, and can very well adopt new rules and procedures to address the problem of those 3M null votes. The figure is just too large to ignore! Will the Senators and Congressmen be irresponsible and just close their eyes on this issue? What if it happened to them in the next elections?

Btw the Automated Election System Law (RA 8346) doesn’t contain any defintion of ‘null votes’, so I went to the Comelec web site to search through its resolutions and other documents which could contain the definition. Either there is no such published definition, or the Comelec web site was acting funky again.

And just for the sake of argument: Even if the null votes affect Sen. Noynoy Aquino and go the way of former President Joseph Estrada, as the Binay camp intrigues in an attempt to douse cold water on the LP’s assertions on behalf of Sen. Roxas, Aquino will still end up w/ a 2-million margin vs Estrada. So there.

Let’s get to the truth! Count those null votes now!


Posted in 2010 elections, Comelec, MAR Roxas, News, Noynoy Aquino, Philippine politics, Video | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

More than 79,000 fail to vote due to hostilities

Posted by akosistella on May 15, 2010


More than 79,000 voters failed to vote on election day due to wrong shipping of ballots and armed hostilities in 12 municipalities in the Visayas and Mindanao, the Commission on Elections said Friday.

A total of 79,920 voters from 203 clustered precincts in the country were affected by failure of elections in some towns in Iloilo, Samar, Sarangani, and the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM), a Comelec record showed.

Earlier, failure of elections has been recommended in 11 municipalities in the country although the poll body has yet to make official declarations and reschedule voting in these areas.

via GMANews.TV.


Declare failure of polls in Lanao Sur town, Comelec asked

MANILA, Philippines – A petition has been filed before the Commission on Elections en banc to declare failure of elections in another town in Lanao del Sur province, the eighth such petition that has been lodged before the poll body.

Tugaya has reportedly been the victim of harassment by armed groups that stalked the town’s polling precincts.

One lawyer Abubakar told the Comelec en banc that on election day, a grenade launcher was fired towards the school where elections were supposed to be held, resulting to fear among the voters and the board of election inspectors (BEIs).

Via Inquirer.net

Posted in 2010 elections, Comelec | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Namfrel observations on the May 10, 2010 elections

Posted by akosistella on May 14, 2010

(Via Namfrel, May 14, 2010)

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Posted by akosistella on May 14, 2010


Phil. Star: Derailed

Can votes ever be counted with a semblance of order in certain areas of Mindanao? Days after the Commission on Elections announced the likely winner in the presidential race, and with winners in many local contests already proclaimed, the nation is still waiting for the results from the usual trouble spots in Mindanao. Violence, documented on video, has erupted, and accusations of vote buying and cheating are flying in the Lanao provinces and the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.

via Philippine Star.

Inquirer: Shameful

THE NEWLY PROCLAIMED REPRESENTATIVE OF the second district of Pampanga, President Macapagal-Arroyo, has an urgent message for the nation: “Don’t get too excited over the election results; with me, it’s still politics as usual.” A mere two days after the country’s first, and generally successful, nationwide automated elections, and only five days before Chief Justice Reynato Puno retires from the Supreme Court, she created a new position: that of Chief-Justice-in-waiting. The timing, and the choice of her former aide, Justice Renato Corona, tell us the appointment was yet one more political act of the most politically partisan president since 1986.

Via Inquirer

Vulture eyeing a midnight feast

THE scramble for the last peso that could be extorted in the last two minutes of the Arroyo administration is on. There no more big-ticket contracts to award. There are no buyers for the remaining government crown jewels set for privatization. But there’s still the old reliable “audit” of corporate taxpayers and the resulting “areglo.” Peanuts compared to the foiled NBN-ZTE deal, perhaps, but a few millions here and there pretty soon add up to a substantial sum, to crib from the late Everett Dirksen, the curmudgeon at the US Senate.

Via Malaya

Daily Tribune: Hostile territory

Sen. Noynoy Aquino, who is leading in the unofficial presidential tally, should rethink his exclusive stance on the presidency as if he, the comebacking civil socialites, and the Liberal Party (LP) would be all that is needed to run the country.

Via Daily Tribune

Manila Times: Two cheers for digital democracy

It appears that JC [delos Reyes], Senator Jamby Madrigal and Nick Perlas have evidence that something rotten has happened in the the way the counting was carried out by the Precinct Optical Count Scan (PCOS) machines’ software or memory cards and whatever or whoever. So they are asking the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to probe into the irregularities.

Via Manila Times

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Palace to Agra: Review decision

Posted by akosistella on April 22, 2010


MANILA, Philippines – President Arroyo ordered yesterday Justice Secretary Alberto Agra to review his decision clearing Gov. Zaldy Ampatuan of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao and acting Maguindanao Vice Gov. Akmad Ampatuan of murder charges in the killing of 57 people in Maguindanao last year.

In a statement, Executive Secretary Leandro Mendoza said Agra was told to confer with prosecutors to ascertain if any important evidence was not considered, presented, or available when he issued the controversial resolution.

“Then the secretary of Justice should publicly justify the final decision,” read the statement.

via Philippine Star.


Agra’s boss to blame for clearing of Zaldy Ampatuan, says bishop

MANILA, Philippines—Acting Justice Secretary Alberto Agra may be taking all the heat now, but he is just a cog in the wheel.

At the center of the controversy hounding Agra is his boss and her close ties to the suspects in the chilling massacre of 57 people in Maguindanao last November, according to retired Dagupan Archbishop Oscar Cruz.

Agra has been the object of intense criticism for his decision to clear Zaldy and Akmad Ampatuan of murder charges in connection with the massacre because of a purported lack of evidence. The main suspect in the killing is another Ampatuan scion, Andal Ampatuan Jr.


AND: Kin of massacre victims want Agra sacked as Justice chief

Posted in 2010 elections, Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, News, Philippine politics | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Baby James and the Villar campaign

Posted by akosistella on April 21, 2010



THE latest Pulse Asia presidential survey shows Manny Villar trailing Noynoy Aquino by 12 statistical points. With an estimated 50 million voters, one statistical point translates to roughly 500,000 votes. Consequently, considering that the survey has a plus or minus margin of error of two percent, Villar would need 5,000,000 to 7,000,000 votes just to catch up with the leader. With just 19 days to go before the elections, that will require quite a sprint.

More significantly, Villar’s survey ratings for the past three cycles have been on a steady decline. From a high of 35 percent, it dropped to 27 percent, and finally to 25 percent. Those 10 to 14 percentage points can be interpreted as a minimum of 5,000,000 people becoming disillusioned with Mr. Sipag at Tiyaga.

Villar and his wife Cynthia have been quoted many times as saying that these survey results do not bother them at all. Is that grace under pressure, or simply false bravado?



IT’S so obscene, I can’t find the right words to express my outrage over the gall of Justice Secretary Alberto Agra to clear Zaldy Ampatuan, suspended governor of the Autonomous Region for Muslim Mindanao, and his uncle Maguindanao Vice Gov. Akmad Ampatuan Sr. of complicity in the most heinous crime this country has experienced and shocked even the a violence-weary world.

It’s also obscene hearing Deputy presidential spokesman Gary Olivar describe as “an obscenity” the public’s accusations about Malacañang’s role in absolving the two Ampatuans of responsibility in the Nov 23 Maguindanao massacre that claimed the lives of at least 57 people, 32 of them journalists.

The Center for Media Freedom and Responsibility is right. “The real and current obscenity in this country is the fact that the alleged president for whom Olivar speaks has become central to the major issues that beset this country, most particularly that of whether there will be a change in its putrid leadership rather than more of the same despite the 2010 elections.

Click Ellen Tordesillas

Posted in 2010 elections, Joseph Estrada, Manny Villar, Noynoy Aquino, Opinion, Philippine politics | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Abalos, 10 others charged with graft for 2008 polls

Posted by akosistella on April 9, 2010


MANILA, Philippines – Former elections chairman Benjamin Abalos and 10 other officials of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) were charged with graft before the Office of the Ombudsman yesterday in connection with the procurement of election forms for the 2008 elections in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).

Reached by The STAR, Abalos denied having any involvement in the allegedly anomalous transaction since he was no longer with the Comelec when it took place.

Abalos resigned as chairman in October 2007, five months before the supposed bidding process was undertaken.

“Definitely, I don’t know anything about it,” he said.

via Philippine Star.

Posted in 2010 elections, Comelec, Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, News, Philippine politics | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Holding Arroyo responsible for the Ampatuans

Posted by akosistella on March 31, 2010


THE dismissal by a Quezon City judge of the rebellion case against Maguindanao Gov. Datu Andal Ampatuan Sr., his son, ARMM governor Zaldy Ampatuan and 22 others should strengthen the case filed by relatives of journalists who were among those killed in the November 23 massacre before the Asean Intergovernmental Human Rights Commission (AICHR).

The journalists’ relatives are holding the Arroyo government responsible for the Nov. 23 carnage. In their suit filed last February, the relatives said “clearly, all of those responsible for the carnage are agents of the Philippine State. Their acts in connection with the 23 November 2009 Maguindanao massacre are attributable under international law to the Republic of the Philippines.”

This week, three of the petitioners, Glen Salaysay, son of Cotabato City journalist Napoleon Salaysay, Noemi Parcon, wife of Koronadal City journalist Joel Parcon, and Feulen Sumagang, cousin of UNTV reporter Julito Evardo, were in Jakarta, where the AICHR is based, to follow up on their suit accompanied by their lawyer, Harry Roque of CenterLaw Philippines.


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Posted in 2010 elections, Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, News, Philippine politics | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Comelec abetting ‘money politics’

Posted by akosistella on March 26, 2010

By Jarius Bondoc

Presidential Spokesman Ricardo Saludo is at it again, defending the indefensible to the point of absurdity. There’s nothing wrong with having five Arroyos in the House of Reps, he says: Gloria as Pampanga rep, son Dato as Camarines rep, brother-in-law Iggy as Negros rep, and another son Mikey and sister-in-law Marilou as party-list reps. Other political clans do it, Saludo chatters, so the Arroyos are equally entitled.

Saludo forgets. The Constitution forbids political dynasties. That there’s no enabling does not mean anyone can abuse the political space to make family members reign simultaneously or in succession. “Abuse” brings us to a related point: it was Gloria Arroyo who financed the quick rise of the Ampatuan dynasty. Under her the clan gained 22 elective posts in Maguindanao province and the Autonomous Muslim Region, plus many more appointive ones. The ban on dynasties is to prevent abuse of power. But Arroyo abetted the Ampatuans — to the point of their alleged massacre of 57 female political rivals, lawyers and journalists.

Click Philippine Star.

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Posted in 2010 elections, Comelec, Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, Opinion, Philippine politics | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Early ARMM elections

Posted by akosistella on March 24, 2010


IN December, in the aftermath of the politically motivated massacre of killing of 52 persons, including journalists, in Maguindanao, Atty. Macabangkit B. Lanto, former ambassador and his brother Atty. Benjamin B. Lanto filed a petition last year with the Comelec, asking for earlier elections in the Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).

Besides addressing the issue of electoral violence, citing the mass execution attributed to the Ampatuans, the brothers also noted then that “holding the election earlier in the ARMM will address the requirements of Republic Act No. 8436, otherwise known as the Automated Election System Law (the “Automated Election Law”), as amended by Republic Act No. 9369, that the machine or Precinct Count Optical Scanner (“PECOS”) shall be tested first in some areas in the country before it is actually used in the May 10, 2010 National Elections. And if successful in the ARMM, it will allay all fears and apprehensions about machine’s capability and viability. And if there are corrective moves that the Honorable Commission has to undertake, it will have enough lead time to do it.”


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Posted in 2010 elections, Comelec, Opinion, Philippine politics, Regions | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

60,000 poll machines pass stress tests, ready for polls—Comelec

Posted by akosistella on February 26, 2010

MANILA, Philippines—Over 60,000 poll machines are ready to be used for the first-ever national automated polls in May, Commission on Elections Comelec chairman Jose Melo announced on Thursday.

Melo made the announcement after his visit to the Comelec warehouse in Laguna. Melo expressed satisfaction over the results of the laboratory stress tests and other operational tests conducted on the machines.

Click INQUIRER.net.


6M ballots printed for May polls–Comelec exec

MANILA, Philippines – (UPDATE) Six million ballots for the May automated polls were printed at the National printing Office as of Thursday, Comelec Commissioner Gregorio Larrazabal said.

The 6,037,038 ballots will be used in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao and the provinces of Bohol, Batanes, Palawan, Masbate among others, the NPO said.

“This visit is to inspect the ongoing printing of the ballots to be used in May and to update Congress on the status,” said Larrazabal.

Click INQUIRER.net

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Shoddy ballots: sign of dagdag-bawas

Posted by akosistella on February 24, 2010

GOTCHA By Jarius Bondoc

It’s useless for the Comelec to downplay the lack of printer’s security marks in 1.7 million ballots of the Muslim Autonomous Region (ARMM). Voters rightly suspect the makings of dagdag-bawas (vote padding-shaving). Supposedly it does not matter that the National Printing Office was unable to embed security signs. The Comelec says that it and automation supplier Smartmatic-TIM have their own barcodes and serial numbers anyway. Still the main question is left unanswered: why the ARMM? That the unsecured ballots are the ones for the region is precisely the point. ARMM is where dirty Comelec operators sell false canvasses by the hundreds of thousands of votes for tens of millions of pesos to presidential and senatorial hopefuls.

There are many ways to rig the May 2010 count. Easiest is to repeat the modus operandi in the 2008 ARMM voting, when automation was tested. In some precincts voters were given mere photocopies of the ballot. Poll cheats filled up the genuine ones, for automated tally by precinct count optical scanners, the same PCOS that will be used nationwide in May. In other ARMM areas automation was deferred on various pretenses. Usual manual counts were made of manufactured votes. In yet other zones voters were terrorized to not vote, the easier to misuse their ballots. Gov. Zaldy Ampatuan handily was reelected, with his entire slate of assemblymen. The three ruses — fake ballots, no automation, terrorism — can still be employed in May along with a fourth: rigged automation.

Click Jarius Bondoc.

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No security marks on ballots for ARMM

Posted by akosistella on February 22, 2010

MANILA, Philippines—The security of nearly two million ballots for voters in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) may have been compromised after they were printed without the security markings of the National Printing Office (NPO), the Inquirer has learned.

An NPO source confirmed that the ARMM-bound ballots for the May 10 general elections had no NPO security features. The autonomous region consists of the provinces of Basilan, Lanao del Sur, Maguindanao, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi.

Click INQUIRER.nets.

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Private armies and free elections

Posted by akosistella on February 12, 2010

The election involves voting and then counting (and canvassing), and if these two procedures go well, then, the people’s choice will indeed come out.

But there is a problem.

Even as the people express their will through the ballot, that expression can – and has been –subverted many times.

When and how can this subversion take place?

Click Winnie Monsod on GMA TV.

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Donors of political ads must be made public

Posted by akosistella on February 9, 2010

MANILA, Philippines – Donors of print and broadcast campaign materials must make themselves known to the public, the Commission on Elections (Comelec) said yesterday.

In Resolution 8758, the Comelec has banned campaign posters and advertisements that do not display the correct name and address of the payor.

It is unlawful to print, publish, broadcast or exhibit campaign materials donated to a candidate, political party or party-list group without their written acceptance.

The restriction aims to monitor the spending of each candidate.

Click The Philippine Star.

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