Election fever remains high PDF Print E-mail
Sunday, 15 May 2016 14:49

Sound Snipings

BY Jimmy Cabato

While tapered a bit, the election fever remains high. Talks of VCM manipulations prevail. And there are mixed opinion/reactions on that perceived cheating, not only on the national level but local as well.

To SS, the vast majority of those he dialogued with agree there was “dagdag-bawas” (addition-subtraction of votes).

In the Monggueh Cabinet, only one member believes there was no vote manipulation. All others dissent.

Being from District 2, he spoke only of their district. And SS opts to keep his identity under wraps, for he is related to re-elected Vice Mayor Cesar Iturralde, Councilor-elect Teody Arquiza as well as losing council re-electionist aspirant Percy Ramos, and a friend of losing re-lectionist Councilor Elong Natividad.

He professes, both Iturralde and Arquiza are legitimate winners, And that the duo of losing council re-electionist aspirants Natividad and Ramos are true losers, claiming both lost support dueto their campaign antics as critics. He claims Ramos even lost support right in his home base Talon-Talon. That one or two kagawads there withdrew their backing for Ramos.

Do you, folks buy that view?

No. Not that SS is against Arquiza, being his friend and a non-voter in District 2. So, SS shares this point. Speaking of kagawads, the dissenter says, one or two withdrew their support for Ramos. But it is widely known, most of the other kagawads were anti-Arquiza. They even filed a complaint against the latter which caused his suspension from office.

So, how can his analysis ever hold water?

For the sake of argument, SS expresses doubts. Anyway, already proclaimed as winner — while commiserating with Percy and Elong — this corner abides by the Comelec verdict. Congratulations, Councilor Teody. God speed.

* * * *

Here are strong arguments pointing to massive cheating.

The Manila Times (TMT) reports, “A Commission on Elections (Comelec) personnel and technology provider Smartmatic came under heavy fire Friday as allegations of tampering with the poll results ran thick after they introduced a new script midway through the vote count.

A Smartmatic engineer said he changed a hash code to correct the character “?” which appeared on some of the candidates’ names, to “ñ”.

A furious Comelec Commissioner Rowena Guanzon sought a formal en banc investigation into Smartmatic’s “illegal act,” including the poll body’s IT personnel who gave the other half of the password to the Smartmatic technical support team.

“I believe that Smartmatic has breached our protocol and they should be held accountable for it,’ Guanzon fumed. The Commissioners are going to study this and even investigate our own people. If there is malfeasance we will get into the bottom of it.”

The commissioner stressed that the Automated Election System, which is owned by the government, should not have been touched by anybody without the consent of the Comelec en banc.”

What else is there to say to add up to the Guanzon outbursts? Such being the case, the Philippines should go back to manual counting, where cheating can be readily erased - if not - at least minimized.

And for Smartmatic, its performance bond must be withheld.

* * * *

Everybody must have noticed, Sen. Bongbong Marcos was already nearing a one million lead early in the count. His lead steadily disintegrated right after the introduction of a new script midway through the vote count.

However, even if no Comelec reversals due the Marcos charges are instituted, there still appear hopes for a final Marcos victory.

Nearly 96 percent of the votes may have been counted, but at the moment, in about 2,000 precincts in areas that no elections were held due to violence and technical VCR glitches, new elections are taking place.

And TMT reports, a total of some one million votes have not been counted.

On the other hand, the Manila Bulletin reports, Marcos is leading in the overseas voting count.

A Marcos victory then may still be at hand.

****

Here is one more comment on the illegitimate introduction of a new script midway through the vote count that boosts perceptions that there were massived cheating in both local and national level.

Reactor Artemio Gonzales says: “The fact that a script (computer program) was replaced by a person without authority and without approval, proves that any script can be modified/replaced maliciously by anyone having physical access to the VCM/Server! …

The counting for both VP and all senatorial candidates down to councilors must be stopped ASAP.”

* * * *

Presumptive Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has all the chances to mend fences with the international leaders, many of whom he had antagonized during the campaign period.

For one, the United States is reaching out to him, having sent a congratulatory message, expressing hopes of deepening US-Philippine ties with his incoming administration.

That’s statesmanship in the highest degree.

And as SS believes, his overly-accentuated “tough guy image” was a simple put-on to rake in the votes, Duterte must bite the bait.

 

His antics have paid off. Time for the true Duterte to re-surface.