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Comelec exec apologizes for absence of observers in poll printing

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Commission on Elections (Comelec) Commissioner Marlon Casquejo on Thursday apologized for the absence of observers in the printing of ballots for the May 9 elections, saying the poll body will allow random ballot inspection in a bid to “rectify” the situation.

Comelec Commissioner Marlon Casquejo. INQUIRER.web FILE PHOTO / CATHY MIRANDA

MANILA, Philippines — Fee on Elections (Comelec) Commissioner Marlon Casquejo on Thursday apologized for the absence of observers within the printing of ballots for the Could 9 elections, saying the ballot physique will enable random poll inspection in a bid to “rectify” the state of affairs.

Throughout a listening to of the Senate electoral reforms committee, Senate President Vicente Sotto III requested Comelec about “disallowing observers” within the printing of the ballots.

“That is very essential so far as the difficulty of transparency [is concerned],” Sotto advised Comelec officers.

Casquejo apologized, citing the rising COVID-19 circumstances as the rationale why observers weren’t invited to the poll printing.

“We apologize for that. With regard to my letter, that was the time when [the number of] COVID [cases] could be very excessive,” the Comelec commissioner mentioned.

“However then once more that isn’t an excuse,” he added.

In response to Casquejo, a random inspection of official ballots might be performed.

“We are going to enable political events and accredited citizen’s arm  to pick and to look at and to look at these ballots,” he added.

In a separate press convention later within the day, Comelec commissioner George Garcia mentioned the random testing of ballots might be performed subsequent Thursday.

Through the Senate listening to, in the meantime, Garcia mentioned over 49.7 million ballots have been printed, or 78.7 % of the extra  than 67.44 million ballots that wanted to be printed for the Could polls.

Of the 49 million printed ballots, over 31.99 million have been “decided to be good ballots,” which signify 47.44 % of the ballots already printed.

Of the whole printed ballots, over 5.2 million have been initially discovered faulty.

After reverification, 105,350 ballots have been lastly declared as faulty. The reverification of over 1.9 million printed ballots continues to be ongoing, in keeping with Garcia.

JPV

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