Probe reports PNP official accessed Comelec’s Baguio warehouse – Diokno
BACOLOD CITY — Opposition senatorial candidate Chel Diokno is asking the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to immediately conduct an investigation into reports that Cordillera regional police director Brig. Gen. Israel Dickson inspected vote counting machines and other election paraphernalia in the poll body’s warehouse in Baguio City.
Diokno, who was in Bacolod City on Monday for campaign sorties with the rest of Otso Diretso candidates, said Comelec must come up with a report on the incident. He also urged Comelec to assure the public that such a breach would never happen again.
Diokno said his lawyer Emilio Marañon III wrote the Comelec en banc on Monday, asking the constitutional commission to act on the matter.
“Regardless of the PNP (Philippine National Police) official’s intention, the visit and access of a non-Comelec personnel to what should have been a restricted facility raises a serious concern,” Diokno said.
He said Dickson, being non-Comelec personnel, had no business inspecting or being inside the Comelec warehouse in Baguio since Comelec Resolution No.10097 was clear that the authority of PNP was limited to providing perimeter security.
“This incident is a clear breach of the Comelec warehouse’s security and, worse, by its own supplemental guards. This should be taken very seriously by Comelec as the incident can cast doubt not only on its independence, but on the very integrity of the upcoming polls,” he added.
Diokno then called on PNP not to allow members to be used by politicians in violating election laws.
Comelec Commision Rowena Guanzon said in a tweet that no one was allowed to inspect Comelec warehouses without permission, even if they were directors of PNP.
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