Ink blotting, other glitches mar mock polls

By , on February 13, 2016

(Photo courtesy of the official Twitter page of Comelec)
(Photo courtesy of the official Twitter page of Comelec)

MANILA—The mock polls conducted by the Commission on Elections (Comelec) in some areas in the country were marred by several problems, including the long time in the process of voting, ink blotting among others.

But, Comelec Chairman Juan Andres Bautista noted that the purpose of conducting the mock polls was to identify the problems and how to resolve them.

“First of all ‘yung number of voters napansin namin ‘yung unang voter it took him close to 11 minutes to vote…medyo matagal ’yun. Pero syempre we are trying to get into the groove,” he said in an interview at the start of the process in Baseco in Manila.

He explained that 11 minutes was a long time since their ideal voting time was between two to three minutes.

The poll body chief added, “Definitely nasa tao din ‘yun pero tingnan din natin…pero we are in Manila kaya kahit papaano we’d like to think na man mattes literacy…But on the other hand, baka naman kaya sila nagtagal e kasi may media nanonood sa kanila…”

Aside from the long voting time, there were also issues on the lack of facility for persons with disabilities (PWDs) in public schools.

Bautista said that they were currently conducting accessibility assessment to identify the schools without access for PWDs.

“Right now an accessibility audit that we are conducting together sa Department of Education, Department of Public Works and Highways para sa paglalagay ng ramps,” he added.

On the ink issue, Bautista said that they would look into the reports to determine what they would do next.

Meanwhile, more voters preferred to join the mock polls in a Manila mall for convenience.

Rolly Ligtas from Manila said the voting process was convenient as he only needed to shade the oval unlike in the manual polls wherein a voter had to write down all the names of the candidates. And the mall was also cooler as it was air-conditioned, he said.

“Okay naman mas madali kaysa sa sinusulat…follow lang ‘yung instruction kung ilan ‘yung pipeline, ’yun lang ang ishade at mas convenient dito kasi aircom,” he said.

Bautista noted that the mock polls held in Robinsons Mall, Ermita showed how it was convenient for the voters to vote inside malls.

“Ito nakita natin ‘yung diperensya sa paraan ng pagboto sa pisang public school compared dito sa Robinsons Ermita. Makikita ninyo na mas maginhawa,” he added.

The mock polls were conducted to test and ensure the adequate security, accuracy, system and functional capability and integrity of the vote counting machines (VCM), transmission devices and consolidation and canvassing system (CCS); to simulate the conduct of election (deployment, voting, and consolidation) and transmission procedures; and to develop public confidence and acceptance of the Automated Filing System (AES).