GUIDE TO AUTOMATED VOTING
Mayor James “Bong” Gordon Jr. has tasked the City Public Affairs Office to help educate the voters about the computerization/automation of the upcoming elections.
“Kailangang maipaliwanag sa mga mamamayan ang tamang paraan ng pagboto upang hindi masayang ang kanilang karapatan lalo na ngayon na computerized na ang susunod na eleksyon,” said Mayor Gordon.
According to Section 35 of the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) Resolution no. 8739 promulgated on December 29, 2009, otherwise known as the General Instructions for the Board of Election Inspectors (BEI) on the Voting, Counting and Transmission of Results in Connection with the May 10, 2010 National and Local Elections, the voting shall be conducted by the following manner:
a. The voter shall, using a ballot secrecy folder and the marking pen provided by the COMELEC, fill his ballot by fully shading the oval beside the names of the candidates and political party participating in the party-list system of representation of his choice.
b. The voter shall approach the PCOS (Precinct Count Optical Scan) Machine, insert his ballot in the ballot entry slot and wait until the ballot is dropped in the ballot box. The BEI shall monitor the PCOS screen to make sure that the ballot was completely accepted. Thereafter, the voter shall return the ballot secrecy folder and marking pen to the chairman.
c. The chairman shall apply indelible ink at the base and extending to the cuticle of the right forefinger nail of the voter, or any other nail if there be no forefinger nail.
d. The voter shall affix his thumb mark on the corresponding space in the EDCVL (Election Day Computerized Voters’ List).
e. The voter shall then leave the polling place.
Moreover, as mandated by Section 10 of the same resolution, the BEI shall enforce obedience to its lawful orders and prohibits the use of cellular phones and camera by the voters inside the polling precincts.
“The automation of the 2010 National Elections signals the beginning of a massive transformational phase in the electoral system of the Philippines. We are finally moving away from the known flaws and weaknesses of the old ways of doing things and towards an automated election system that promises a speedy and accurate count, a highly efficient reporting mechanism that democratizes the count and canvass of election results, and most importantly, the extinction of dagdag-bawas,” said COMELEC Chairman Jose Melo posted at the country’s official website promoting voter’s education.
“Senator Richard Gordon fought for the poll automation and it is our duty to vote wisely. When voting, shade the oval beside the candidates’ names completely. Marking it with a dot, X, a line or any other mark is not valid. Partial shading also may risk invalidation as it won’t be properly read by the machine. Also, avoid over-voting or don’t shade 2 or more names for a single position because your vote will be invalidated as per COMELEC guidelines,” said Vic Vizcocho, head of Olongapo City Public Affairs Office in promotion of voters’ education.
For more information about voters’ education on poll automation, log on to www.comelec.gov. ph or visit the COMELEC office at the 2nd floor of the Olongapo City Hall.
Vice-Mayor Cynthia Cajudo checks-out a PCOS (Precinct Count Optical Scan) Machine that will record and count the votes in the polling precincts in connection with the May 2010 synchronized local and national elections. Meanwhile, the COMELEC held mock elections in selected polling precincts nationwide last February 6, 2010 to test the PCOS Machines and the process of poll automation. The poll automation or computerization was the brainchild of Senator Richard Gordon, son and former mayor of Olongapo City and now running as president of the country.