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Comelec needs to print 38 million more ballots

Posted on: March 11, 2010

Comelec needs to print 38 million more ballots
March 10, 2010 19:41:00
Anna Valmero
INQUIRER.net

MANILA, Philippines—About 12 million special paper ballots have been printed for the May 10 polls and the Commission on Elections (Comelec) needs to produce 38 million more before the May 10 polls.

But the daily average production of 650,000 ballots remains short of the 793,430 needed daily output to ensure all 50,000 ballots are ready by April 25, Comelec Commissioner Gregorio Larrazabal said Wednesday.

To meet the target, at least a fifth printer needs to be leased as its printer churns out only 162,500 ballots per day, he said.

The new printer will arrive by March 20, said Cesar Flores, president for Asia-Pacific of Smartmatic-Total Information Management.

“We are getting a fifth printer to increase the printing output and have all ballots ready for shipment by April 25,” Larrazabal said, adding, “We are also considering a sixth printer to augment the current capacity.”

“If we have printed the ballots too close to the April (25) deadline, we could ship them by air instead of land to speedup deployment,” he said.

No additional cost will be incurred by the Comelec for getting additional printers as rental cost remains within the P7.2 billion automation deal with technology partner Smartmatic, said Flores.

Over the weekend, Kodak personnel from the US arrived at the National Printing Office to calibrate its machines and increase printing output, Larrazabal said.

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