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Automated vote in HK, Singapore—Comelec

Posted on: February 11, 2010

Automated vote in HK, Singapore—Comelec
By Anna Valmero
INQUIRER.net First Posted 10:30:00 02/11/2010 Filed Under: Elections, Eleksyon 2010, Politics

MANILA, Philippines—The Commission on Elections (Comelec) has decided to automate the voting for registered overseas absentee voters (OAVs) in Hong Kong and Singapore, allocating P44 million for the exercise, an official said.

Commissioner Armando Velasco, who chairs the Committee on Overseas Absentee Voting (COAV), said his committee, in consultation with the en banc, decided to use 30 poll machines in Hong Kong and Singapore.

“We are automating the elections for the 95,355 and 31,851 OFWs in Hong Kong and Singapore, respectively. This would be good for 30 days starting April 10 until the close of polls here in the country on May 10, 6 p.m. However, the transmission would only be after the close of polls at 6 p.m. of May 10, Philippine time,” he said.

Velasco said he was reassured by the Technical Evaluation Committee for Automation and supplier Smartmatic-TIM that the 30 poll machines and ballot boxes to be used by the OAVs could be made available by April 10, the start of casting of votes for Filipinos abroad.

The poll official said this would allow Comelec to hold an actual automated voting ahead of the May polls in the country.

“We would have an advanced actual (use) of the automated machine and we (would) see the accuracy and reliability of automation for casting of votes and feeding of ballots (into) the machines, although the transmission would only be at the same time of close of polls here in the country,” he said.

On February 20, Comelec would go to Hong Kong to inspect the facilities there, especially the polling precincts that will house the machines, as well as the transmission technologies available so that the voting results can be transmitted for consolidation at Comelec servers in the Philippines.

Velasco said that 138,113 Filipinos in 47 countries abroad have opted to vote by mail while 324,511 OAVs decided to vote in person at Philippine posts and consulates abroad. These types of voting—voting by mail and in person—would be manual elections, as voters would have to write the names of theirs candidates for president, vice president, senators, and party-list group on their ballots.

Comelec COAV allocated P188 million for the conduct of manual balloting abroad, said Velasco.

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1 Response to "Automated vote in HK, Singapore—Comelec"

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