By Nino Luces
LEGAZPI CITY, Albay – Commission on Elections (COMELEC) Bicol Director Atty. Noel Pipo confirmed on Monday morning that there were reported SD cards that were corrupted, causing vote counting machines (VCMs) to cease in some voting centers in Bicol region.
He said that at least one precinct in Camarines Norte, two in Camarines Sur and another in Daraga, Albay were reported where SD cards were corrupted.
Aside from corrupted SD cards, there were also reports that some VCMs were shutting down that caused delay in the voting process in some precincts in the region.
According to Pipo, the shutting down of VCMs could happen when there printing problems occur. But he assured that there were technical support and technicians on stand-by to fix or repair any problem.
“We already instructed ang ating mga technical support kasama na ang mga board of election inspectors (BEIs) na ituloy ang botohan. Ang gagawin nila, kunin na muna yung balota, then kapag naayos na yung SD card, yung teacher na ang magsasalang sa makina. We also encourage yung mga watchers na bantayan mabuti ang proseso. Huwag po tayong mag-alala, huwag tayong matakot na hindi mabibilang ang inyo pong boto,” Pipo said.
In the southern part of Legazpi City, a VCM shut down, but watchers, voters and the BEIs were able to agree with each other to continue the voting process.
“Pumila ako kanina mga bandang ala sais pa, pero naka boto ako mga 8 a.m. na dahil nag-shut down yung VCM. Yung ginawa ng BEIs, kinausap yung mga botante, kasama yung mga watchers na bomoto na muna at iipunin lahat ng balota at saka pag naayos na yung VCM, yung mga teachers na ang magpo-proseso. Nagkasundo naman at mas naging mabilis yung pagboto,” according to Al Almario a resident of Maslog, Legazpi City.
In some areas of the third district of Albay, the same problem with the VCMs was reported.