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‘ALL SYSTEMS GO’ Election watchdogs laud Ok on poll fund

Posted on: March 3, 2009

Original post

By Anna Valmero
INQUIRER.net
First Posted 15:47:00 03/03/2009

Filed Under: Elections, Eleksyon 2010, Technology (general)

MANILA, Philippines—The Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (PPCRV) and the National Movement for Free Elections (Namfrel) lauded the House approval of the poll automation budget after delays.

“When I received the call from Representative Ted Locsin, we are very happy about this approval. Para tayong nabunutan ng tinik [Like a thorn was pulled out of our chest] because we can now proceed with the hearing at the Senate,” Henrietta de Villa chairperson of the PPCRV and the Namfrel said in a phone interview.

“Now, we are all systems go for poll automation,” De Villa said.

She thanked Locsin in particular for “gearing the plenary to understand the merits of poll automation.”

A total of 193 House members voted yes for House Bill 5715, an act appropriating P11.3 billion supplemental budget for automation of the 2010 elections.

“I understand the reservation of several congressmen about poll automation. Everything that is new brings agam-agam kung ano ang mangyayari [doubts on what will happen],” she said.

“Looking at the elections in the Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao where we are part of, we found that we have reduced if not prevented electoral fraud and cheating due to less human intervention in the canvassing of voting results,” she said.

De Villa stressed, however, that the success of any election will depend on the people implementing the system.

“No matter how good the technology is, the honesty of the election system will always depend on the people—our individual and collective decisions will determine if elections will bring about change for the good of the nation,” she said.

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