Comelec rejects hybrid election system
MANILA, Philippines – The Commission on Elections (Comelec) rejected a proposed semi-automated or hybrid election system for 2016, saying it has no more time to "experiment" with alternatives.
"Gahol na tayo sa oras eh," Comelec Chairman Andres Bautista said in a news conference Tuesday, July 14. (We're running out of time.)
He added, "At this point, I don't think we want to experiment with the system that we will be using for 2016."
Bautista pointed out that the Comelec has rejected the hybrid election system proposed by poll watchdogs, including former poll commissioner Augusto Lagman.
Under the hybrid election system, manual counting is done in election precincts, and automation comes in during canvassing. (READ: Poll watchdog pushes for 'laptop count' to replace PCOS)
The Philippines used precinct count optical scan (PCOS) machines in its first two automated elections in 2010 and 2013.
Bautista explained that for 2016, it is difficult to use "untried and untested systems."
Teachers reject manual polls
The Comelec chairman added that teachers refuse to return to a manual system.
He said Education Secretary Armin Luistro even wrote the Comelec about this. Luistro on Wednesday also visited the Comelec office in Intramuros, Manila, to discuss the issue.
Quoted by Bautista, teachers said they want their service as election inspectors to be voluntary, not mandatory, if the Philippines will use a manual system in 2016.
"Even teachers say their preference is automated. And as one of the more essential stakeholders of our elections, we need to listen to them," he said.
Bautista also said a hybrid system could face "legal challenges."
"It is impractical to use the hybrid system for 2016," he said. "But we can consider it for future elections."
Twin petitions before the Supreme Court, however, threaten the Comelec's last-known stop-gap measure to ensure automated elections in 2016. (READ: Comelec to critics: Your actions could derail polls) – Rappler.com
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- 2016 Philippine Presidential Elections
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- 2016 Philippine Senatorial Elections
- 2016 Philippine Congressional Elections
- 2016 Party List Elections
- 2016 Philippine Local Elections