Marcos camp ‘fully supports’ Duterte call to junk Smartmatic
MANILA, Philippines — The camp of former Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. on Saturday said it “fully supports” the call of President Rodrigo Duterte to “dispose” Smartmatic as the provider of vote-counting machines (VCMs) in future Philippine automated elections.
“So the statement made by the president in Tokyo that [the] Smartmatic contract should be abandoned, rescinded or terminated or not be renewed, we are in full support of the call of the President,” Marcos spokesperson Atty. Vic Rodriguez said in a Quezon City media forum.
While on his four-day working visit to Japan, Duterte urged the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to find a new supplier of VCMs that is “free of fraud.”
Rodriguez also refuted what Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez said that the Venezuelan-based Smartmatic can’t be banned from future public biddings without any legal basis.
“The basis has been laid down by no less than Republic Act 9369, yung mismong Automated Election Law,” Rodriguez said.
Marcos’ spokesperson pointed out Section 1 and Section 7 of the law.
“Yung Section 1, malinaw na sinasaad na duty ng estado na makapaghanap ng isang system ng election na ang result will be fast, accurate and reflective of the genuine win of the Filipino people,” he explained.
“Yung Section 7 din naman po ay malinaw yung system capabilities. Dalawa po yung sinasabi dyan, dapat po may adequate security against unauthorized access, which brings back yung nangyari nung 2016 (elections),” Rodriguez added.
In 2016, Marcos filed an electoral protest before the Supreme Court, which acts as the Presidential Electoral Triibunal. He questioned the results of the vice presidential elections that proclaimed Leni Robredo as the winner.
With this, Rodriguez reiterated their camp’s claim of “unconstitutionality” of the automated election system that was used in the 2016 polls. (Editor: Mike U. Frialde)
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