Anong bang nangyari? Pangilinan wants comelec to explain 7-hour data outage.

Senator Pangilinan composite photo from  Google (ctto)

Manila, Philippines - Senator Francis Kiko  Pangilinan brought up the issue last Tuesday during a public hearing on the conduct of the recently-concluded midterm election as he inquired the Commission on Elections (Comelec) on the problem that caused the transmission delay that resulted a 7-hour results blackout last May 13. 

He asked the Comelec if there is an effort to find the root cause of this glitch?

Senator Koko Pimentel called on a Joint Congressional Oversight Committee (JCOC) yesterday to discuss the output of the technical working group (TWG) on the automated election system, as well as the final report of the local source code reviewers and the conduct of the 2019 elections.

“I asked so many experts on IT and they have a thousand different interpretations of what could have happened. Just earlier, they were saying perhaps there was a bug. We don’t know. We don’t know,” Pangilinan said.
The Liberal Party, headed by Panglinan, submitted motions dated May 16 and May 21 requesting the Comelec to give an explaination the 7-hour glitch, defective VCMs (vote-counting machines), and corrupted SD (secured digital drive) cards, among others.
Pangilinan also served as the campaign manager of the Otso Diretso senatorial slate, a coalition of LP, Akbayan, Magdalo, Aksyon Demokratiko, and various civil society organizations.

“We had two manifestations, on May 16 and May 21, as the canvassing was ongoing. We have not received any response from you. So may we have the courtesy of being responded to?” Pangilinan added.
“I know you’re busy, and in fact it’s part of our manifestation, but let’s respond to these manifestations. We do not want to get this feeling that the opposition is being ignored,” he said.
Comelec Spokesperson James Jimenez agreed on the request that the election committee will prepare a response and a report.
Pangilinan also expressed concerns about the malfunctioning VCMs. “Why was it not tested to the maximum? Up to what level was it tested, because we don’t want something like this to happen again. And therefore obviously, the testing was not effectively or properly undertaken? Because if you tested it properly, then this 7-hour glitch should not have happened.”

Mr. Peter Banzon the Technical Evaluation Committee Chairman said there has been logistical challenges in testing the VCMs.
“We couldn’t find a place where we could install all the VCMs, basically. The only time all of them would be online would be on election day,” Banzon said.
Sen. Pangilinan said, “Come 2022, another glitch could happen because you won’t have the opportunity to put all the 90,000 in place? So what’s the point of testing if we’re not sure the test will in fact be an assurance that it would work?”
Comelec revealed on the same meeting that 1,051 voting machines malfunctioned during election day, with 2,246 SD (secure digital) cards that were found defective, particularly in regions 3 (Central Luzon), 4A (Southern Luzon), 9 (Zamboanga Peninsula), Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, and the National Capital Region.

However, the Comelec emphasized that some of the corrupted 2,246 SD cards have been replaced. The election committee does not have the exact figure at the moment, the senators computed as much as 2.2 million votes might have been affected.
“When you have to wait five hours for the replacement, will you still vote? These are the realities on the ground. So if you are talking 2.2 or 3 million voters who had to wait for five hours for the SD card, will they still vote? We don’t know. Baka umuwi nalang at sinabing, ‘Ayaw na naming bumoto,’ Pangilinan said.

“So this has to be avoided. Because this is a disenfranchisement in that sense of a number of voters and affects the overall results. And therefore it has to be checked. It has to be looked into. And how must this be avoided in the future,” he added.

 Source: Politiko

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