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Comelec maps out poll automation details

Posted on: September 16, 2009

Comelec maps out poll automation details

By Anna Valmero
First Posted 10:16:00 09/16/2009

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

MANILA, Philippines- The Commission on Elections is set to discuss details of how to undertake next year’s poll automation with its technology provider Smartmatic-Total Information Management (TIM) Corp.

Comelec and Smartmatic-TIM are set to meet this week to discuss specific roles of groups under the poll body’s project management office (PMO), chairman Jose Melo told

PMO will manage and oversee the implementation of a “cohesive management strategy” between Comelec and Smartmatic-TIM, the Comelec chair said.

The discussions will tackle manpower and support plan from polling precincts to national canvassers, training for personnel deployment per region, continuity plans and electronic transmission plans, Melo said.

The Concerned Citizen’s Movement earlied filed a petition seeking to stop the release of funding for the P7.2 billion project, for lack of a “system pilot

Melo said the project remains on schedule based on the implementation calendar, despite a delay caused while waiting for the Supreme Court’s decision on the petition.

There will be nine groups under PMO – technology, election systems, warehousing and logistics, regions, telecommunications, administration, public information, operations and physical security, according to Smartmatic-TIM spokesperson Gene Gregorio.

The technology, election systems and operations groups will train personnel on the technical operations and aspects of precinct count optical scan (PCOS), which Comelec will use to automate the voting,
counting, electronic transmission and canvassing of votes.

Groups for warehousing and logistics, physical security and regions will ensure the PCOS units, ballots and other election paraphernalia are deployed securely to the right provinces and polling precincts, while supervised by respective personnel assigned to the area.

The telecommunications group will survey all available networks that can be used to transmit election results from the polling precincts to main servers housed at Comelec in Intramuros.

The public information group will handle the training for voters, poll watchers and teachers who will act as election inspectors.

“We are all systems go for automation now and we expect members of the PMO to prepare the proposals on how to manage the automation project and necessary contingency measures such as preparations for manual polls,” Comelec’s Melo said.


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