Poll chief twits Suarez on alleged ballot sale
MANILA, Philippines – Commission on Elections (Comelec) Chairman Sixto Brillantes twitted House Minority Leader Danilo Suarez for alleging that fake ballots for the 2013 mid-term elections are already being sold.
"Paano sila magdi-distribute ng excess ballot, wala pa ang balota, nasa Canada pa ‘yung papel. Pwede nang may nagbe-benta ng balota pero ‘di iyon ang balotang gagamitin sa 2013. Wala pa ‘yung papel na manggagaling sa abroad,” said Brillantes.
Brillantes said Suarez is "talking about rumors and 'chismis.'"
“Frankly, I don't think he knows what he's talking about,” the poll chief said.
“Sinasabi ko lang, huwag masyado maingay, you have to verify facts first before talking. Don't say they're selling ballots in Mindanao,” he added.
The Comelec will attend next week's Joint Congressional Oversight Committee to talk about the preparations for the mid-term elections. Brillantes will be attending with all of Comelec's technical staff.
Brillantes said he told Smartmatic to be comprehensive when discussing the matter with the media.
Smartmatic is a bidder declared ineligible to bid for the ballot printing contract which the National Printing Office awarded to Holy Family Cannon Joint venture.
Smartmatic has publicly warned of a failure of elections after their precinct count optical scan (PCOS) machines rejected prototype ballots tested during the bidding.
Brillantes, meantime, welcomed the clarification of lawmakers that the newly passed mandatory biometrics registration for voters will take effect in 2016.
Biometrics registration is a key tool for purging the voters' list of flying voters.
Some 8 million voters with active registrations do not have biometrics such as electronically captured photos, signatures and fingerprints.
The automated fingerprint identification system will be used to check for double or multiple registrants.