Printing firm denies churning out 2013 poll ballots | Inquirer News

Printing firm denies churning out 2013 poll ballots

The Holy Family Printing building in Quezon City PHOTO FROM HOLYFAMILYPRINTING.COM

MANILA, Philippines—A Quezon City-based printing company has denied allegations by an election watchdog group that it was involved in the continued printing of ballots for the May 13 elections almost three months after the polls had closed.

The Holy Family Printing Corp. (HFPC) denied the claim made by the Automated Election Systems Watch (AES) and Melchor Magdamo, a former Commission on Elections (Comelec) lawyer, that ballots were being printed “24 hours nonstop” over a period of two weeks in late July at the HFPC’s Quezon City office on orders of the Comelec.


AES called a news conference last July 30 in which Magdamo showed reporters photos of supposed ballots for the May 2013 elections that he alleged were still being printed by HFPC.


Magdamo, who has blown the whistle on several alleged scams at the Comelec, including the overpricing of ballot secrecy boxes in 2010, claimed that it was the HFPC that had won the contract to print the ballots for the May elections.

In a letter to the Inquirer in reaction to the Inquirer report on the AES news conference, the HFPC said the allegations against it were “baseless and sweeping’ and “highly improbable.”

It said it had nothing to do with, and had no access to, the actual printing of the official ballots for the May 13 elections as this was done exclusively by the state-run National Printing Office (NPO), “the state agency mandated to print government forms including the exclusive authority to print official ballots and other election paraphernalia for the May 13 automated national and local elections.”

The HFPC clarified that it had “no contractual relationship” with the Comelec in connection with the May polls.

The firm is “contractually bound not with the Comelec but with the NPO,” the HFPC said through its lawyers in the letter dated Aug. 2.

It said its contract with the NPO was limited to the “lease, delivery, installation and commission of printing machines; the supply and delivery of ballot paper with security features and other consumables for printing of the ballots and providing technical support personnel during the printing of the ballots and other matters incidental to the foregoing.”


It further explained that the HFPC printing machines, which are the only ones capable of printing official ballots and the ballot papers containing the security features, continued to be in the “possession, supervision and control of the NPO until now.”

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TAGS: AES Watch, Elections, Philippines, printing firm

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