Mix of old, new voting systems eyed for 2016

By Sheila Crisostomo, The Philippine Star

Posted at Aug 16 2014 08:35 AM | Updated as of Aug 16 2014 04:35 PM

MANILA, Philippines - The Commission on Elections yesterday welcomed the recommendation of the Comelec Advisory Council (CAC) to use mixed voting technologies in the 2016 presidential polls.

“We welcome that and we’ll be having a special en banc meeting to discuss the recommendation,” said Comelec Commissioner Lucenito Tagle.

During the joint congressional oversight committee hearing on Thursday, CAC chair Louis Casambre announced the council’s recommendation for the Comelec to reuse the precinct count optical scan (PCOS) machines in the coming elections.

The CAC, however, proposed to the Comelec to also use other voting systems, like the direct-voting electronic technology, as long as they are compatible with the canvassing system.

The council also proposed that Comelec holds open public bidding for the other technologies.

But Tagle said the Comelec would rather have a new voting technology if it would be given sufficient budget.

“We asked for P16 billion for new technology but the DBM (Department of Budget and Management) said we can only have P10 billion. That would not be enough if we want to have new machines, new voting system,” he noted.

“I think this will all depend on the budget that will be given to us,” he added.