Latest Stories

Comelec close to deal with Dominion, Smartmatic on release of source code


Comelec Chairman Sixto Brillantes Jr.. FILE PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines—Commission on Elections (Comelec) Chair Sixto Brillantes on Wednesday said they have been finalizing the agreement with automated elections technology suppliers Dominion Voting Systems Inc. and Smartmatic International for the release of the source code of the Precinct Count Optical Scan (PCOS) machines in time for its review by political parties, accredited organizations and independent candidates.

“We’re now winding up the specific provisions of the agreement. We’re still discussing some things. Then the final agreement will be sent to the lawyers of Smartmatic and Dominion in the United States, they will be the ones who will finalize the agreement,” said Brillantes told reporters in an interview at the National Printing Office Wednesday.

The poll chief said that as of Tuesday, the deal was already “97 percent” sure of being completed.

“We now have 96 to 97 percent chances of getting the source code for the machines to be used in the May 13 polls,” he said.

Brillantes earlier said that Dominion, the election provider that developed the PCOS technology, has practically agreed to release the source code.

“We’re just waiting for the lawyers’ go signal. I am just praying that after we are through here in the Philippines, those in the US will already approve it,” he said.

The source code of the PCOS machines is the computer-programming language that makes the machines run.

Dominion, which owns the technology of the PCOS and had licensed it to Smartmatic, had refused to release the source code because of a pending legal case against Smartmatic.

Dominion canceled its license agreement with Smartmatic in 2012. It has been asking for $10 million from Smartmatic for the use of the source code.

Comelec has been in talks with Dominion since late last 2012 for the release of the PCOS source code, which is currently with SLI Global Solutions, an independent certifying agency based in Denver. SLI will not release the source code to Comelec unless Dominion gives its consent.

Should the Dominion finally agree to release the source code, it should be made available for review of the political parties and other interested groups.

Several interest groups want to review the source code which is supposed to be conducted three months before the elections in accordance with the Automated Election System law.

Brillantes said he expects to announce the results of the negotiation by April 15, barely a month before the May 13 elections.

He said they have already started giving out notices to political parties and to citizens’ arm Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (PPCRV). He said source code reviewers can start with the Consolidation and Canvassing System (CCS).

Meanwhile, the National Printing Office has finished printing all 52 million official ballots for the May 2013 elections, three weeks ahead of schedule.

The printing was completed in just 57 days, three weeks earlier than the scheduled completion date on April 25.

“Pati ako nagulat nga e. In 57 days, natapos agad ang printing ng balota natin . This is really record-breaking. I think this should set the manner of printing by NPO for all subsequent printing of all elections in the future,” said the poll chief.

Aside from saving time, Brillantes also pointed that they were able to save money from the project since it went through public bidding.

Brillantes, along with Commissioners Lucenito Tagle and Elias Yusoph, Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Herminio Coloma, and Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (PPCRV) head Henrietta De Villa, witnessed the printing of the last ballot in a closing ceremony at the NPO office in Quezon City on Wednesday.

“We made it in 57 days… we hope we satisfied you with our performance,” said NPO Director Emmanuel Andaya addressed the crowd composed of Comelec and NPO personnel.

NPO Deputy Director Raul Nagrampa said they were able to save as much as P200 million compared to the 2010 polls.

And now that the precinct-specific ballots are all printed, tested, and packed, the 52,333,801 official ballots will be delivered to different parts of the country at the proper time, according to Brillantes.

As explained by Brillantes, deployment shall be in different stages starting with the Comelec warehouse in Marikina City then to the regional hubs, provinces, municipalities, and finally to precincts on Election Day.

“These are already good for delivery along with other items and election paraphernalia,” said Brillantes.

It can be recalled that ballot printing, which was out-sourced by the NPO to Holy Family Printing Corporation and Canon Marketing Philippines, began last February 4.

The Comelec has already contracted two companies to handle the deployment of Precinct Count Optical Scan (PCOS) machines and other election paraphernalia.

Airfreight 2100, Inc. is set to handle deployment to all regions in the country except in Visayas, which will be carried out by Joint Venture of 2GO Express, Inc. and 2GO Logistics Inc.

Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter

Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: 2013 elections , 2013 midterm elections , Automated elections , Commission on Elections , Dominion Voting Systems Inc. , Elections , Precinct Count Optical Scan , Sixto Brillantes , Smartmatic International , Source Code , technology

Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
  1. Fr. Suarez says last Mass on Easter before returning donated land to San Miguel
  2. Chinese lawyers say they were tortured by police
  3. Hair salon’s Kim Jong Un poster riles embassy
  4. Siquijor ‘healer’: For every cure, there’s a plant
  5. State seeks guilty verdict for Abalos
  6. Why college grads end up in the PNP
  7. Estrada: I will pray for my detractors
  8. Miraculous image makes Gapan City top site for pilgrimage in Central Luzon
  9. I’ll follow my conscience on Estrada, says JV Ejercito
  10. Five men from Cavite found dead in jeep in Batangas
  1. Suspect in Vhong Navarro mauling tries to leave PH
  2. Massage attendant arrested on rape complaint filed by Japanese tourist
  3. ‘Tell no one’ Makati bettor won P250M lotto
  4. MH370 co-pilot made mid-flight phone call – report
  5. Netizens cry: 6/55 Lotto was rigged
  6. ‘Wife of Jesus’ theory papyrus not fake – Harvard study
  7. North Korea uses flamethrower to execute official
  8. ‘King’ Yabut and I: Driver bares Makati dad ‘abuses’
  9. Gay college instructor arrested for oral sex with student
  10. It was difficult having Japanese blood
  1. KL confirms Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 ended in Indian Ocean
  2. MRT passengers pass the hat for 6-year-old Ashley
  3. Pork payoffs to newscasters Erwin Tulfo, Del Prado, others bared
  4. UP back on top as ‘average’ student aces bar
  5. Rookie, lady cops lauded for quick response to MOA heist
  6. Model Helena Belmonte wished ‘to slash her wrist and hope to die’
  7. Malaysia averts another air tragedy; pilot lands troubled plane safely
  8. Revilla says he was joking; Lacson stands by his story
  9. Revilla ‘consulted’ Lacson on how he evaded arrest
  10. Police rule out foul play in Helena Belmonte’s death as boyfriend is ‘traumatized’


  • Romblon mining site collapses; 3 killed
  • South Korea says 295 missing in ferry disaster
  • OFW who returned home from UAE tests positive for MERS-CoV – DOH chief
  • QC cops bear crosses as penance for demerits
  • Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano
  • Sports

  • China, Taiwan rout foes for 3rd, 5th places in Asian Club volleyball
  • Ginebra’s new import Freeman arrives, makes PBA return vs ROS
  • Fielder ends HR drought, Rangers beat Mariners 5-0
  • Power Pinoys salvage 7th place in Asian men’s volley club championship
  • Knicks prevent Nets from clinching fifth seed
  • Lifestyle

  • Are your favorite malls open this Holy Week break?
  • Celebrate Easter Sunday at Buddha-Bar Manila
  • Moriones feast: A slow, steady transformation
  • Weaving ‘palaspas’ a tradition kept alive in Tayabas City
  • Finalists announced for best translated books
  • Entertainment

  • Mommy Dionisia Pacquiao’s greatest hits
  • Deniece Cornejo posts bail—report
  • Miley Cyrus hospitalized, cancels US concert
  • Otaku Summer Jam 2014: Summer’s hottest J-rock/Cosplay event
  • 2NE1 returns to Manila with “All Or Nothing” Tour
  • Business

  • I-Remit teams up with Lakhoo for remittances from Oman
  • Megawide nets P1.4 B in 2013
  • Longer TRO sought on rate hike
  • Make a stylish statement with the all-new Yaris
  • Hearing set in Olarte case
  • Technology

  • Smart phone apps and sites perfect for the Holy Week
  • Tech company: Change passwords or suffer ‘Heartbleed’
  • Filling the digital talent gap
  • SSS to shut down website for Holy Week
  • Another reason to quit social media this Holy Week: your safety
  • Opinion

  • We may never know
  • Couple of things
  • Mommy D’s magic
  • Stop bizarre and bloody Good Friday rituals
  • Holy Week taboos
  • Global Nation

  • Visa-free travel to Japan could boost tourism
  • 2 PCG men ordered arrested over Balintang Channel shooting
  • US Embassy closed on Holy Thursday, Good Friday
  • Relief worker draws inspiration from helping Yolanda victims
  • Philippines says peace pact should hold despite clashes
  • Marketplace