Polls bets told to beware of P50 M vote manipulation scam
MANILA, Philippines – An election lawyer on Wednesday warned candidates and their supporters that unscrupulous individuals posing as Commission on Elections (Comelec) employees are soliciting a substantial fee to manipulate election results in favor of interested candidates.
Election lawyer George Garcia bared that several candidates informed him that they have been approached by people claiming to be from the Comelec’s IT Department and asked for P50 to P60-million in exchange for manipulating election results.
“P50 to P60 million po, kumakalat, kaya raw nilang i-manipulate ang eleksyon, taga-IT department daw ng Comelec. Huwag po kayong maniwala. Nobody can manipulate the computerization of election results,” Garcia said during the Kapihan sa Manila Bay forum.
(They claim that they can manipulate the elections, that they are from the Comelec’s IT Department. Do not believe them.)
“May makakaisip na bakit hindi [natin patulan ang] P50 million o P60 million, kung P200 million ang kailangan mong gastusin [sa kampanya]? Huwag po kayong maniwala. Manipulation cannot happen and that will never happen,” he added.
(Some candidates may thins, why not, when you need to spend some P200 million for the campaign. Do not fall for it.)
Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez echoed Garcia’s statements.
“2010, 2013, 2016 – in none of these elections has anything ever happened that the results can be refuted. Maraming mga kaso, pero madali gumawa ng alegasyon. Wala namang napatunayan na may instance na nagkamali ng bilang ang makina,” Jimenez said.
(There have been a lot of cases of vote manipulation, but none have been proven. It has never been proven that the vote counting machines erred.)
“Mahalaga po sa atin ang track record, and you can look at that. I hope that is not forgotten,” Jimenez added. / gsg
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