THEY have been deluded into believing that Smartmatic’s Automated Election System, using the Precinct Count Optical Scan machines, has made the elections in 2010 and 2013 less fraudulent than the manual ones we have had in the past decades. O how wrong they are!
But maybe, they really know the truth about Smartmatic and the PCOS machines, but they just pretend to be convinced that the process and the machines are clean, so that they can go along with Comelec Chairman’s Sixto Brillantes charade that has benefited the ruling Aquino/Liberal Party regime. That system — untransparent because you cannot verify if your vote was counted or even read correctly by the PCOS machine — will perpetuate the Liberal Party’s power over Philippine politics and governance forever.
Senator Alan Peter Cayetano disappoints us the most. In our editorial the other week titled “A nation of rape victims” we printed an excerpt from the Joint Congressional Oversight Committee (JCOC) hearing of September 18, 2014, which proves that the Comelec allowed Smartmatic to f__k the Filipino people and our electoral democracy in the 2010 and 2013 elections.
To all the senator’s questions about the possibility of cheating, miscounting, and misreporting of election results in precincts, the Comelec Chairman admitted that these could happen in the 2016 election as they did in the 2010 and in the 2013 ones.
But when at the end of the questioning Senator Cayetano asked “xxx So under the present system, massive cheating in 2016 is very possible?” Chairman Brillantes answered, “No.”
So the senator reminded him that he had earlier said he did not know (and had admitted that miscounting and misreporting were done by the PCOS machines). To which Mr. Brillantes replied: “Hindi ho naman massive cheating ito. This is something like a glitch that happened xxx.” And Senator Cayetano retorted: “xxxWhen the machine counts votes that weren’t there, that’s cheating. Whether you call it an error—” which the Comelec head interrupted, saying, “Hindi ho. That is not a correct conclusion, Your Honor.”
Sen. Cayetano, now rather exasperated said, “So you mean, Mr. Chair, puwedeng nakaupo ako dito sa Senado hindi naman pala ako binoto ng tao, hindi cheating iyon? [I could be seated here in the Senate but I was not really elected by the people, and that’s not cheating?]”
Chairman Sixto Brillantes then replied, “ xxx Puwede hong mayroon nagkamali ng kuwan. Iyong makina ho ang may glitch. Makina ho iyon. [The could have been an error of the kwan. It was the machine that had a glitch. It was the work of the machine.]
We ended our presentation of the actual hearing Q&A with Senator Cayetano saying: “xxx we have a big problem if that’s going to be the attitude of the Comelec. I want certainty by the time we pass the budget whether or not the system is reliable, Mr. Chair.”
We are disappointed in Senator Cayetano because he now says (as we reported in our page 1 story on Tuesday “Cayetano: Poll system must be cheat-proof”) that the “PCOS machines…greatly minimized cheating.” It did not!
“The senator, however, pointed out that there is a law, which was implemented in 2010, mandating the conduct of automated election system (AES) aimed at curbing poll fraud, particularly dagdag-bawas (vote padding-vote shaving).
“Although there were glitches, the automated system [did not lead]to automated dayaan [cheating]. Smartmatic is a world-renowned technological provider and it would not allow anything or anyone to besmirch its reputation,” Cayetano said, referring to the company that supplied the PCOS machines. This is misplaced trust in this Venezuelan corporation.
But in fact the Joint Congressional Oversight Committee (JCOC) on the AES and the Commission on Elections (Comelec) itself saw how the PCOS machines inaccurately counted the votes cast and made candidates who did not get the people’s majority vote win.
Statisticians also monitored a nationwide pattern of 60-30-10 in the machines’ count of winning-losing-and-spoiled votes. A mathematically improbable phenomenon.
Some candidates and monitors strictly and neutrally counted votes in exit polls. They found that the PCOS results were markedly different from the rigorously controlled polls.
Election protests have also been unresolved because the ballots used and left inside the PCOS machines have either been changed, tampered with or cannot be accurately checked to show if the machines read them correctly or not. If the ballots are visually assessed as to whether the ovals were shaded correctly by the voter, there will always be a question if the machine saw and read the ballots correctly or if smudges and ink spillage lines caused the machines’ reader to interpret a wrong vote.