Over 1 million pens for May 13 polls ‘in the process of being shipped out’
MANILA, Philippines — Over 1 million markers for the national and local elections “are in the process of being shipped out,” Commission on Elections (Comelec) Spokesman James Jimenez said Monday.
According to Jimenez, a total of 1,029,000 marking pens have already been received by Comelec. With this, he noted, a rate of 12 pieces of markers will be given to every clustered precinct.
“We don’t foresee any more problems with the marking pens because the new pens have been tested extensively and they come up with our requirements,” he said.
“The problem with the original marking pens that was shipped out with the machines is very thin, ‘yung ink, which meant it dried very slowly. Instead of drying very quickly, medyo nagsstay siya doon sa surface ng paper,” he added.
The original marking pens have already been pulled out and placed under the custody of elections officers, Jimenez said.
Earlier, veteran election lawyer and Otso Diretso senatorial candidate Romulo Macalintal expressed fear that the May 13 midterm elections might be postponed if Comelec would fail to fix the problem on faulty marking pens.
According to Macalintal, the pen problem would affect the 85,000 clustered precincts nationwide.
“Since this problem affects the entire 85,000 clustered precincts all over the country, we can just imagine the magnitude and extent of this problem if these pens are not delivered on or before the election,” Macalintal said in a statement.
“[…] Election postponement will occur if these replacement marking pens are not delivered to all the 85,000 clustered precincts before the May 13 election for we cannot have election in some areas with marking pens and postponement of election in areas where these pens are not delivered on time,” he added. /kga
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