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Comelec forms team to probe illegal ballot printing in QC

Comelec Chairman Sixto Brillantes Jr FILE PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines—The Commission on Elections (Comelec) has created a fact-finding committee to investigate a Quezon City printing firm for allegedly illegally printing ballots for the midterm elections.

In a resolution, the commission appointed Comelec law department director Esmeralda Amora-Ladra to head the committee to investigate the allegation of whistle-blower Melchor Magdamo that Holy Family Printing Corp. printed ballots even after the elections in May.

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“After due deliberation and considering the seriousness of the said accusations, the commission resolved… to create a three-member fact-finding committee to investigate the alleged unauthorized printing of election ballots by Holy Family Corp. and to recommend the filing of appropriate charges, if warranted,” said the resolution promulgated on Aug. 23.

“The Comelec resolved to direct [Ladra] to immediately convene the said fact-finding committee and summon Holy Family Printing Corp. and (Magdamo), who will appear as a witness in the investigation,” it added.

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The Comelec en banc issued the resolution on the prodding of Comelec chair Sixto Brillantes Jr. The unauthorized printing of election ballots is an election offense under the country’s election laws.

“The supposed printing of election ballots may constitute violations of the… Omnibus Election Code,” Brillantes said.

Magdamo, a former Comelec lawyer who had exposed anomalies in the election body, said in a press conference in July that the ballots were printed “24 hours nonstop” for two weeks in late July.

Holy Family dismissed the allegations as “baseless and sweeping” and “highly improbable.”

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TAGS: 2013 midterm elections, Ballot Printing, ballots, Comelec, Commission of Elections, election fraud, Elections, Holy Family Printing Corp., investigation, Omnibus Election Code
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