Vice presidential candidate Ferdinand Marcos Jr. (BBM)’s camp on Friday filed a criminal complaint against Smartmatic for the technology provider’s unauthorized change in the script for the transparency server of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) during the counting of the May 9 votes.
The move came after lawyer Jose Amor Amorado, head of the BBM Quick Count Center, on Friday said they will request the poll body for additional access to other components of the Automated Election System (AES) in addition to a system audit of the transparency server and central server of the Comelec.
In filing the criminal case before the poll body, Rep. Jonathan dela Cruz, Marcos’ campaign adviser, said they are holding Smartmatic executive Marlon accountable for alleged violation of the Automated Election System (AES) Law, particularly Section 28 of Republic Act 9369, which prohibits acts that include “interfering with, impeding, absconding for purpose of gain, preventing the installation or use of computer counting devices and the processing, storage, generation and transmission of election results, data or information.”
Garcia was tagged as the one who introduced the script change into the transparency server in violation of Comelec protocols.
“We don’t want him [Smartmatic executive] to get away with it,” dela Cruz said, noting that Garcia was charged earlier for a similar offense in connection with the 2013 elections.
Amorado said they will seek access to the transmission logs, list of VCMs (Vote Counting Machines), USB devices and BGANs (Broadband Global Area Networks) used in the recently concluded elections, as well as the public key and decryption key to open up the transmission files.
“This will enable us to explain, and we would be able to see, how many were the ‘undervotes,’ which are critical to the count of the votes for the vice presidential position,” he added.
As of Thursday, Amorado said, their own count revealed “undervotes” of about 3.5 million for the vice presidential position, which is unusual, he added, because this position was hotly contested in the polls.
Amorado and dela Cruz decried the cancelation of a scheduled hearing on Thursday by the Joint Congressional Oversight Committee on the Automated Election System because of the absence of Smartmatic officials.
“The other thing that I think has not yet been properly advised, and which we had wanted to bring to the attention of the Joint Congressional Oversight Committee, was the fact that at 10:00 p.m. on the same day, May 9, there was a non-transmission of votes from all over the country,” dela Cruz said.
According to him, the stoppage was suspicious because the transmission of election results from various parts of the country stopped simultaneously for about 10 minutes when there were no reported brownouts or other incidents that could explain the glitch.
This glitch, dela Cruz noted, took place after the 7:30 p.m. unauthorized change of the script in the transparency server.
He and Amorado said they will also look into the arrival of new Certificates of Canvass from the provinces of Ilocos Norte, Negros Occidental and Nueva Ecija, copies of which they have received.