Claims of electoral fraud baseless- DILG exec

An official of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) denied on Monday, ay 16, claims of massive cheating in the conduct of the May 9 national and local elections.

DILG Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya pointed out that the allegations of the poll critics are not supported with data and facts on the ground citing that some election problems were due to the high voter turnout.

With the circumstances, Malaya noted that there were long queues stressing that less than 1,000 vote counting machines malfunctioned which is less than one percent of the entire inventory of the VCM in the country.

“Yung walang problema (VCM) is 99.2 percent (Those with no problem if 99.2 percent). So there is really no debate (election results) anymore,’’ Malaya said during a National Task Force to End Local Communists Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) briefing on Monday, May 16,

Malaya also cited that there were only 20 validated election related incidents (ERIS) in the last elections, which he said, were much lower compared to previous national and local polls.

“Essentially napakaganda po ng nakaraang eleksyon (the recent election was commendable). I think this is one of the most successful conduct of elections in recent memory,’’ Malaya said.

The NTF-ELCAC and DILG spokesperson attributed the recent peaceful election process to the government’s reforms which include the automation of the elections, focused deployment of police officers in all areas and dispatch of Philippine National Police (PNP) personnel in places where regular teachers are harassed and intimidated among others.

Malaya pointed out that the PNP has all the pertinent data from the checkpoints to the gun ban violations to the surrendered firearms citing the success of the May polls is not on the actual election only but also on the part of politicians where no campaign fees were paid or any form of support were given to the rebel groups.

“I hope walang nangyari na hindi natin namonitor (that there is no instance where we failed to monitor (politicians providing support to the NPA) but in so far as our intelligence (report) is concerned this has been been a very successful elections because as mentioned kanina (earlier) it is a combination of factors, the support of the local government units (LGUs), our focused military and police operations, the retooled communist support program, this support to the barangay development program, all of these have contributed to the severely diminished capacity of the CTGs (communist terrorists groups) to collect and harass our politicians,’’ Malaya noted.

“But this is not just the DILG, but the entire NTF-ELCAC that vigorously reminded local officials that the goal of the task force in eradicating CTGs depends on them,’’ the DIL spokesperson maintained. (Chito A. Chavez)