Opinion Skinning Left, pagematch: 1, sectionmatch: 1
Opinion ( Leaderboard Top ), pagematch: 1, sectionmatch: 1

PCOS accompli

With the recent Supreme Court decision the country is being led to a fait accompli. There will be no turning back for the Comelec. PCOS will be used despite flagrant examples that show the machines rather than votes were used to decide winners.

The Supreme Court sans impeached Chief Justice Renato Corona voted the purchase was legal. A real investigation participated in by all stakeholders if covered extensively in mainstream media is too horrifying to contemplate. It can lead to the conclusion that May 2010 was a failed election.

Notice the speed with which decisions are now being made. Close to election date, what else could those who have dedicated themselves to unearth the truth do? None. It will have been a fait accompli. 

Remember the Ako ang Simula campaign ‑ the call for honest elections as the answer to our troubled country. Well, while mainstream media enticed the electorate with a beautiful script and movie celebrities about honesty and incorruptibility, the PCOS were made ready to work to do the job of ensuring who wins and who loses. 

We gave up our sovereignty as citizen voters to these machines. Honesty, a fight against corruption, how can we fault that? The same is happening today ‑ this time with the siren song of an anti-dynasty movement.

*      *      *

Opinion ( Article MRec ), pagematch: 1, sectionmatch: 1

Here’s an e-mail from a group of warriors against Smartmatic PCOS:

“During the 2009 bidding of the AES, just like any other participating bidders wherein the highest ranking officer, i.e. chairman and/or CEOs, were all present and accounted for, this CEO of Smartmatic, a young, soft-spoken yet unassuming Antonio Mujica was present in the entire duration of the bidding which lasted almost a month towards end of the evaluation until Smartmatic got the award.

Whether there were any bogus deals in between or during is anybody’s guess. But here’s an article that fairly gives us an idea of the kind of company head honcho this Smartmatic has.” It must be read by as many Filipinos to know the reputation of Smartmatic and why it must not be allowed to conduct our elections in 2013 or ever.”

*      *      *

The article by Alek Boyd in Vcrisis.com.: When will Congress listen to Smartmatic’s bogus claims about Venezuela election — The Hill’s Congress Blog

“On October 7th, the eyes of many in the Americas were set on Venezuela. The reason? A presidential race that pitted one of the most phenomenal politicos our country has seen — Hugo Chavez — against a rather unprepared and naïve opponent — Henrique Capriles. For the record, I was not among the crowd of wishful believers in a possible victory for the opposition. Having shadowed the previous presidential candidate for the opposition in 2006, and having witnessed the obscene way in which all the resources and power of the State is used to favor the incumbent, I was expecting a Chavez victory, and wrote as much, repeatedly.

“But imagine my surprise this morning, when I read an op-ed here, from Smartmatic’s CEO, Antonio Mugica, praising his own company as a beacon of transparency, and extolling the democratic virtues of Venezuela’s electoral system. Since I have been following the meteoric growth of Smartmatic since 2004, and have written thousands of words about its opaque ownership structure and business practices, I nearly choked upon reading the brazen lies of Mr. Mugica.

“In his piece, Mr Mugica has the incredible chutzpah of reminding readers about ‘intentional manipulation’ occurred in Florida in 2000. Coming from someone whose entire business career has been at the helm of a company specifically created for the very clear intentional manipulation of electoral rules, this is not something that can be allowed to remain uncontested.

“The only time Mr. Mugica’s electronic machines have been subjected to a fully independent audit in Venezuela — Fila de Mariches, Nov. 23, 2005, in the presence of EU and OAS electoral observers — it was demonstrated that the secrecy of votes was compromised. That has been the only, and last time, Venezuelan opposition has been allowed anywhere near a Smartmatic voting machine. 

“We then have the issue of the electoral roll, inflated out of all reasonable proportion, and worse, inaccessible to the opposition since 2005, thus impossible to audit. Venezuelan electoral authorities, the majority of whom have shown at one time or another their clear partisanship towards Hugo Chavez, refuse to release the roll, regardless of the fact that according to current electoral legislation it should be open, and public.

“Claims by Mr Mugica of a successful track record, upon which US authorities may entertain the prospect of contracting his company’s services, are truly astonishing. Mind you, he chairs a company that refused to open up to CFIUS scrutiny, after Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney requested a probe into its ownership structure, following a spectacular electoral fiasco in Chicago — even to that city historical standards — in 2006, at the hands of a subsidiary it had acquired: Sequoia Voting Systems.

“On that occasion, Smartmatic flew in a bunch of “electoral experts” from Venezuela — on tourist visas — who were meant to monitor and supervise the process. Alderman Ed Burke raised the alarm, and the rest, as they say, is history. Smartmatic ‘disposed’ of Sequoia — though Smartmatic’s Venezuela — developed software continues to be licensed to Sequoia. Mr. Mugica’s company exited the US through the back door, never revealing whether or not Hugo Chavez still holds a 28% interest in it.  

“Therefore, the only time Smartmatic has participated in an electoral process in the USA, it was deemed a disaster, and in the ensuing probe, it refused to collaborate with US authorities. Is that track record the one Mr. Mugica is banking on for new business opportunities? Or is it the ever so fraudulent record in other countries, where it has been granted contracts in closed processes without bidding, never submitting to meaningful and independent scrutiny, like in Venezuela; or it has falsely claimed to be a Dutch company with an equally spurious “extensive record” in the provision of biometric services, like it did in Mexico City, where its bid was registered with an address of an official who was meant to be vetting the process?

“Smartmatic contracts since 2004, mainly from unaccountable governments of underdeveloped countries (CNP: like the Philippines) where democratic tenets, such as free and fair elections, transparency and checks and balances are completely and utterly disregarded. In that, it has been tremendously successful. No doubt. But in participating in free and transparent elections, or in opening up to the kind of scrutiny typical of truly democratic nations? Its first success is yet to take place.”


Opinion ( Article MRec ), pagematch: 1, sectionmatch: 1
  • Follow Us:
Opinion Skinning Right, pagematch: 1, sectionmatch: 1