By Analou De Vera
The election might be vulnerable to fraud as there were several incidents of voting machine malfunctions reported during the course of the election, a poll watchdog said.
Kontra Daya said that most of the complaints they had received were errors or failures of Vote Counting Machines (VCMs).
The group received reports of 108 cases of VCM errors or failures, 37 cases of vote buying, 36 complaints on the procedures done by Board of Election Inspectors (BEIs), 32 cases of harassment or militarization, and 20 cases of errors or failures of Voter’s Registration Verification Machines (VRVMs).
“Election watchdog Kontra Daya raised concern over numerous reports of voting machine errors or failures sent in by independent monitors and volunteers on the ground, saying that these left the 2019 polls vulnerable to fraud,” the group stated.
“The shift to manual procedures poses vulnerability as ballots that are left in the custody of the BEIs are also prone to manipulation. Voters will have no means of verifying whether their ballots were inserted and read by the machines,” the group added.
Kontra Daya said that the 108 cases of VCM errors had affected several voting places in Metro Manila particularly in the cities of Caloocan, Manila, San Juan, Malabon, Novaliches, Pasig, and Quezon.
The VCM malfunctions also affected the polling precincts in Nueva Vizcaya, Cagayan Valley, Isabela, Pangasinan, Tarlac, Bulacan, Nueva Ecija, Aurora, Albay, Cebu City, Eastern Samar, Lanao del Sur and Maguindanao, the group said.