Published by the Visayan Daily Star
Editor-in-Chief & President
Bureau Chief, Dumaguete
MAJA P. DELY
|CARLOS ANTONIO L. LEONARDIA
The Commission on Elections Bacolod Field Random Manual Audit Team has forwarded to its head office in Manila the results of two of three clustered precincts that underwent a manual audit. The audit, conducted by the RMAT composed of Department of Education personnel on three Bacolod clustered precincts showed that the vote counting machines counted the votes accurately, Bacolod Election Officer Mavil Majarucon-Sia said.
The random manual audit is a protocol required by law being observed by the Comelec to check the accuracy of the vote counting machines. Members of the RMAT convened on May 10 at the BAYS Center to manually audit three clustered precincts in Barangay 10, Mansilingan and Tangub in Bacolod City, as identified by Comelec Manila.
Based on the positive results of this random manual audit, the people of Bacolod now have more reason to congratulate the Comelec and the DepEd for a job well done in the conduct of the May 9 elections. We hope that the other election officials in the other towns and cities of Negros Occidental have also conducted their own random manual audits and relayed the results to Manila, regardless of their outcome. Any discrepancies that may have been detected will need to be analyzed and resolved in order to ensure the credibility of the election results that have thus far, based on the reports coming from the Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting, been amazingly quick, contributing to the overall credibility of the elections and its results.
The Comelec may have done a decent job but no performance can change the mindset of most traditional politicians who still claim to being cheated every time they lose an election. Some may have actual grounds and even proof for their accusations, but for most, it is the standard kneejerk reaction when the results of the electoral process do not suit their desires.
Aside from the random manual audit, the speed and efficiency at which the election results were made public has given the public the much needed assurance that the degree of electoral cheating as far as the vote counting machines are concerned, has been minimized. The new system may not be perfect, but compared to the old system where votes were manually counted and results took days, if not weeks, to be declared instead of merely hours, Philippine elections have definitely leveled up.
Let us hope that as the general conduct of the elections improve, the quality of the candidates also level up.*