MANILA, Philippines – The Senate began receiving Certificates of Canvass (COCs) Tuesday evening.
First to arrive at the Senate office in Pasay City was the COC of overseas absentee voting from Laos.
The COC was received by Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile and Philippine Ambassador to Laos Marilyn Alarilla.
The COC, contained in an envelope, was sealed in a ballot box deposited in a see through storage room. The room is guarded by the Senate security.
The Congress is constitutionally mandated to serve as the national board of canvassers for the presidential and vice-presidential poll count.
Article 7 Section 4 Paragraph 4 of the Philippine Constitution provides that the returns of every election for president and vice president certified by the board of canvassers of each province or city shall be transmitted to the Congress, directed to the Senate president.
Ballot boxes containing the election returns will be received at the ground floor's lobby while ballot boxes containing the certificate of canvass will be received at the second floor of Claro M. Recto Hall.
There is a certificate of canvass logbook for all the ballot boxes that were turned over. The election officer who turned over the ballot boxes will also be required to sign the log book.
Representatives of different political parties of candidates will also sign as witnesses on the reception form before these ballot boxes are sealed and padlocked.
The ballot boxes will be stored in the cage built inside Claro M. Rrecto Hall and will be fully secured by the staff of the Office of the Senate Sergeant-at-Arms.
There will also be CCTV (closed circuit television) cameras to monitor the movements inside the storage hall.