Comelec to study call of Duterte to replace Smartmatic
MANILA, Philippines — The Commission on Elections (Comelec) said it will study President Rodrigo Duterte’s call to “dispose” of the country’s vote counting machines (VCMs) provider, Smartmatic.
“Matimbang po ang opinyon ng Presidente natin at talagang kami sa Comelec pag-aaralan talaga namin yan. Isa sa mga nabanggit ng Presidente ay tanggalin na yung sistema ng bidding,” Comelec Spokesperson James Jimenez said in a media forum at the National Press Club in Manila on Friday.
“Definitely kakailanganin ng masusing pag-aaral…kasi under tayo ng rules na nagre-require ng public bidding, so kung magagawan natin ng paraan yan, bakit hindi? Yun naman kasi ang sinasabi ng Comelec [na] wala namang hold ang Smartmatic sa atin,” he added.
This after the President called on the Comelec to find a new VCM provider that is “free of fraud.”
“The people don’t like Smartmatic and if you use that in the next elections, three years from now, I don’t know what will happen. Something has got to be improved on the system. Stop using Smartmatic because there’s been a lot of… I don’t want to attribute corruption,” Duterte said during his meeting with the Filipino community in Tokyo, Japan.
“Kindly, I am now asking you as a co-equal body, it’s just promoting turmoil, please do not use it,” the President added. (Editor: Jonathan P. Vicente)
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