According to Tindig Pilipinas, the Comelec should also be held liable for ignoring the blatant violations of campaign rules, particularly on campaign posters, and disenfranchisement of voters.
Geremy Pintolo
Accountability sought for election glitches
Lino Dela Cruz, Sheila Crisostomo (The Philippine Star) - May 18, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — A coalition of citizens’ groups trooped to the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) yesterday morning to demand accountability from the Commission on Elections (Comelec) over the technical glitches that occurred in the vote counting machines (VCMs).

According to Tindig Pilipinas, the Comelec should also be held liable for ignoring the blatant violations of campaign rules, particularly on campaign posters, and disenfranchisement of voters.

“Even prior to the official campaign period, politicians blatantly disregarded the laws on electioneering. And during the elections, violations were more blatant,” said Jozy Acosta-Nisperos of The Silent Majority, one of the groups that mobilized yesterday’s #AnyareCOMELEC event.

The groups have tried to seek an audience with the Comelec, which has been canvassing the votes for senators and party-list at the PICC-The Forum in Pasay City. 

But police and security personnel were prepared and stopped them from entering the The Forum.

According to Nisperos, the Comelec failed to discipline the candidates and turned a blind eye to massive illegal billboards, campaign materials inside police precincts and government offices and the use of government resources to put them up.

“There was unprecedented vote buying, this time taking the additional form of millions of pesos of donations in shoes, notebooks, cell phones and services,” she noted.

They also questioned the designation of Nacionalista Party, which is a part of the Hugpong ng Pagbabago coalition of Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte, as dominant minority party.

The groups said that Comelec was unprepared, leading to the malfunctioning of many VCMs on election day.

In Marawi City, losing candidates and multisectoral groups staged a rally yesterday and denounced the alleged massive cheating and vote buying during the May 13 elections.

The rally spearheaded by losing candidates asked President Duterte and the Comelec to declare a failure of elections in Marawi and Lanao del Sur and disqualify candidates directly or indirectly involved in the massive cheating and vote buying.

The rallyists also claim that they recorded some 600 incidents of the so-called 3-in-1 scheme that refers to voting for three favored candidates for P3,000 or any combination of five favored candidates or 5-in-1 for the sum of P6,000 up to 10,000 or higher.

In Iligan City, winning congressional candidate reelectionist Rep. Freddie Siao was accused of vote buying.

Leo Zaragoza said the camp of incumbent Mayor Celso Regencia will file charges of vote buying against Siao and seek his disqualification.

Siao’s rival for the lone congressional district seat in Iligan is Leony Roy Ga, an ally of Regencia. Ga lost by some 3,000 votes.

2019 MIDRERM ELECTIONS COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS VOTE COUNTING MACHINES
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