Cavite city council bets seek correction of ballot templatesBy Matikas Santos
MANILA, Philippines – Several candidates running for the Sangguniang Panglungsod of the City of Bacoor, Cavite filed a petition with the Commission on Elections (Comelec) Wednesday asking for a correction in the official ballot because of a mix up in the list between two of its districts.
“This petition simply prays for the correction of the obvious and manifest errors in the official ballot templates to be used for the May 13 elections in Bacoor West ‘district 1′ and Bacoor East ‘district 2′ of the city of Bacoor,” the petition said.
The district 1 section of the ballot lists the candidates for district 2 and vice versa, it said.
The 12 petitioners are: candidates Mike Bautista, Rowena Bautista-Mendiola, Venus De Castro, Reynaldo Fabian, Edwin Gawaran, and Boy Solis all from district 1 and Bayani De Leon, Boy De Leon, King Gutierrez, Robert Javier, Gudeng Nolasco, and Rey Palabrica all from district 2.
Petitioners said they had checked the ballot templates uploaded on the Comelec website only to find “grave and alarming errors.”
“Upon examination of said ballot templates for each district, petitioners discovered grave and alarming errors as regards the names of the candidates for the position of ‘members, Sangguniang Panglungsod,’” it said.
Lawyer Romulo Macalintal filed the petition to the Comelec in behalf of the petitioners.
Comelec Chairman Sixto Brillantes Jr. told reporters that the corrections have already been done during the printing of the ballots and that the ballot templates uploaded on the website was an old version.
“Even if there is something wrong on the website [version], the website is not the official ballot,” Brillantes said.
“That has already been corrected a long time ago, it’s already fixed, there is no problem anymore,” he said.
The Comelec has seen a lot of errors and corrected them already a long time ago, Brillantes said.
Comelec Education and Information Division Director James Jimenez said that after they received reports of the error they had immediately reviewed the national level.
“In a print run if there is a lot or sheets that have errors, they are pulled out and are not counted in the total ballots printed,” Jimenez said. At least 41 million have already been cleared after printing.
“Candidates should not worry, election is still a long way off and we do have enough time for corrective measures,” Jimenez said.
Brillantes and Jimenez said they are now undertaking measures to update the ballot template uploaded on the website.