PPCRV says 400 to 600 VCM glitch ‘not alarming’
MANILA, Philippines — The Church-backed poll watchdog Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (PPCRV) on Monday dismissed as “not alarming” the Commission on Elections’ (Comelec) report that around 400 to 600 vote counting machines (VCMs) suffered technical glitches.
“Actually hindi ‘yan alarming…” PPCRV Executive Director Maribel Buenaobra said in an interview at the PPCRV command center.
“That’s just about less than one percent, that’s 0.004 (percent), that’s not alarming,” she added.
Comelec Spokesperson James Jimenez earlier reported that around 400 to 600 VCMs out of 85,000 total VCMs have malfunctioned as of 2:40 p.m.
During 2016 national elections, 188 out of the 92,000 VCMs malfunctioned and replaced by Smartmatic, Jimenez added.
The PPCRV official refused to conclude if the glitches aggravated the frustration of many voters. She added they still need to verify the incident reports they received from volunteers across the country before releasing an official and collated report.
“We don’t have validated reports as to how many voters were frustrated and walked out,” Buenaobra said.
“I’m advising the voters to stay calm, please vote sayang po ang boto ninyo,” she added.
Buenaobra said they have yet to receive reports of vote-buying, pre-shaded ballots or violent incidents.
The PPCRV is a nonpartisan, nonsectarian, nonprofit organization affiliated with the Catholic Church that is mandated to provide “voter’s education, poll watching and unofficial parallel count during elections,” according to Buenaobra.
PPCRV handles transmitted election returns as well as the unofficial total parallel count which is electronically submitted by the transparency server.
The watchdog has dispatched 300,000 volunteers for Monday’s midterm elections, she added. (Editor: Jonathan P. Vicente)
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