Comelec sets deadline for Dominion source code

By RG Cruz, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Feb 28 2013 03:48 PM | Updated as of Feb 28 2013 11:49 PM

MANILA – Commission on Elections (Comelec) Chairman Sixto Brillantes gave precinct count optical scan (PCOS) source code owner Dominion Voting Systems until the first week of March to release the source code for review by Philippine political parties and interest groups.

“I have to know first week of March, otherwise we will have to make the announcement that we cannot produce the Dominion source code now in hands of SLI. Therefore, we will still proceed [with the automated election]," he said.

Brillantes previously said that the political party source code review is not a prerequisite to the holding of a valid automated election.

The Comelec is girding for the source code review of the consolidation and canvassing system (CCS) of the automated election system by political parties and interest groups even as it continues to work on opening a similar source code review for the PCOS machines.

The poll body is set to release the criteria that will be the basis for the accreditation of interested groups who will be allowed to do their own source code review.

"By tomorrow or Monday, we will come out with a resolution that will go into accreditation of interested groups. We will open it up to accreditation. Umpisahan lang natin sa CCS, nandito sa atin iyan ‘pag dumating anytime ‘yung source code ng PCOS, bubuksan natin, political parties will have priority, walang issue ‘yung interested groups. May process of accreditation," said Brillantes.

The automation law requires 2 kinds of source code review--one by a 3rd party certifier and another, that it be made available to political parties and local interest groups.

Under the current Automated Election System, there are 2 source codes to review: the source code of the PCOS machines, and the CCS.

The PCOS accepts and tabulates votes at the precinct level, while the CCS consolidates and canvasses the election returns from each precinct PCOS at the municipal, city, provincial and national level.

The source code is the human readable instruction that powers each system.

The CCS source code is now available, while the PCOS source code has been withheld by 3rd party certifier SLI Global Solutions because of pending collection claims between source code owner Dominion Voting Systems and the licensee, Smartmatic.