UNA wants explanation of ‘60-30-10’ pattern
Instead of telling the opposition to concede defeat in the senatorial election, the administration should ask the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to investigate the supposed “60-30-10” pattern in the returns so the public will know what really happened, the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) said on Friday.
Information technology (IT) experts called attention to the supposed returns pattern on Wednesday, though they made clear they were not suggesting a manipulation of the May 13 vote, which the administration Team PNoy dominated, winning nine of the 12 Senate seats at stake.
Navotas Rep. Toby Tiangco, secretary general and spokesperson for UNA, on Friday said that even before the elections, he had received e-mails informing him that the returns would come in during the count in a pattern similar to the IT experts’ findings.
Tiangco said he paid little attention to the information because of the highly technical nature of the subject of the e-mails sent to him.
He said one such e-mail came from a supposed expert connected with Ateneo de Manila University.
But he changed his mind, he said, when Sen. Franklin Drilon, campaign manager of Team PNoy, began to ask UNA to accept defeat to quell speculations that the election had been rigged.
“Now why would he suddenly say that? Why is he now being defensive? If I were in his place, the prudent thing to do is to ask the Comelec to investigate to put the matter to rest,” Tiangco told the Inquirer.
Tiangco said he had asked his informants to give him a “layman’s explanation” of the supposed returns pattern to help UNA decide whether it should take action.
“We want to understand what really happened and we want to know what to do about it,” he said.
IT experts working with election watchdogs announced on Wednesday that they had observed the vote count always going 60 percent for Team PNoy candidates, 30 percent for UNA candidates, and 10 percent for the other candidates in many canvassing centers.
They said the pattern was so consistent that the Comelec should look into it to see whether there was a “conspiracy.”
The UNA had no role in the IT experts’ going public with the supposed returns pattern, but Drilon said the UNA, which won only three Senate seats, should concede defeat to erase doubts about the results of the election.
Tiangco said Drilon had “no business telling UNA what to do.”
Comelec Chair Sixto Brillantes Jr. on Thursday said the supposed pattern could be a “coincidence” and could not have happened everywhere.
The results of the current review of the source code used in the ballot scanners will show no such pattern as detected by the IT experts, he said.
For a “final evidence,” all the ballot boxes could be opened, he said, suggesting a handcount of the votes.
“I’m willing to make a bet that 98 (or) 99 percent of the ballots and the PCOS (precinct count optical scan machines) would have the same results,” he said.
No real pattern
The Comelec’s citizen arm Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (PPCRV) said it had observed “no real pattern” that would indicate the election results had been predetermined.
PPCRV communications director Ana de Villa Singson said on Thursday that the supposed pattern implied predetermined results. But after an initial analysis of the results by the PPCRV, “it doesn’t appear to be that way,” Singson said.
The PPCRV has assembled a team of mathematics, statistics and computer technology experts to study the election results and see whether there is anything to the supposed pattern.
Singson said the team’s findings would be stated in lay language so the public would understand the issue.
Some leaders of the Catholic Church yesterday joined a call for the creation of a “truth commission” to resolve the doubts about the integrity of the election.
Jaro Archbishop Angel Lagdameo, Cubao Bishop Honesto Ongtioco and Malolos Bishop Jose Oliveros told reporters that they favored a truth commission for an investigation of the supposed returns pattern and other alleged irregularities in the election.
The allegations must be dealt with, Oliveros said. “An independent body different from the Comelec would have more credibility,” he said.
Oliveros said a 70-30 pattern in favor of Team PNoy had been observed in Bulacan province.
“Here in Bulacan, the results are similar to the national report. It’s almost statistically improbable,” he said.
“I’m in favor of a truth commission to investigate the [alleged] irregularities [so that] justice may be achieved and honesty promoted,” Lagdameo said.
“I think it would be good to have a truth commission to investigate the issue to maintain the credibility and integrity of the electoral process,” Ongtioco said.
On Tuesday, preacher Eduardo Villanueva, who lost the race for the Senate, urged the Aquino administration to create an independent investigative body to look into the complaints about “glitches” and other defects of the ballot scanners used in the country’s second automated elections. With a report from Jocelyn R. Uy