Comelec maintains #Halalan2022 clean, fair amid reported irregularities

Job Manahan, ABS-CBN News

Posted at May 11 2022 12:09 PM | Updated as of May 11 2022 01:13 PM

Voters line up to cast their votes at 9PM, after a VCM malfunction at the Barangay Hall of Barangay Valencia, Quezon City on May 9, 2022. Residents waited for the VCM replacement, which malfunctioned at the opening of the polling precincts at around 8PM. Gigie Cruz, ABS-CBN News
Voters line up to cast their votes at 9PM, after a VCM malfunction at the Barangay Hall of Barangay Valencia, Quezon City on May 9, 2022. Residents waited for the VCM replacement, which malfunctioned at the opening of the polling precincts at around 8PM. Gigie Cruz, ABS-CBN News

MANILA— The Commission on Elections (Comelec) on Tuesday maintained the country's polls this year were clean and successful despite some alleged irregularities and issues that hounded election day. 

Comelec Commissioner George Garcia said the election results could not be doubted, even if at least 1,800 vote-counting machines malfunctioned. Aside from this, various election-related violence also hounded Philippines' southern provinces. 

"Tama po (ang bilang ng boto) at wala pong kaduda-duda po diyan," said the commissioner in a televised briefing.

(The vote count is accurate and cannot be doubted.)

"Ang Namfrel po ay naglalabas at maglalabas ng kanilang results per precinct base sa transmitted result. Tingnan ninyo po, tutugma ba o hindi iyong election results na nakita ninyo sa presinto at iyong mismong ER na nandiyan po galing sa mismong transparency server," Garcia added. 

(Namfrel will also release the results per precinct based on the transmitted results. You should double check whether or not the election results you see in precincts and in your transparency server were the same.)

He also responded to the supposed "fixed" gap between presidential contenders Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos, Jr. and Vice President Leni Robredo on Comelec's transparency server, saying these results were still "partial at unofficial."

"Siyempre po nirirespeto po natin ang mga ganiyang klaseng reaksiyon at ganiyang klaseng mga komento. Pero tatandaan po na ang Comelec sa kasalukuyan ay hindi po kami naglalabas ng kahit na anong official result or tally," he added.

(We respect those kinds of reaction and comments but remember that the Comelec cannot release for now any official result or tally.) 

The vote-counting machines that really broke down on election day were just a small portion of the total 106,000 he said, which was why its negative impact would do little to affect the election results. 

These problems were fixed with the help of technicians present in polling precincts, he said. He did not mention however how many VCMs turned out to be defective on Monday. 

"Iyon pong may mga nagkaroon ng issue, hindi po talaga nasira – nagkaroon ng issue ay kulang-kulang po, mga 1,800 po iyan hanggang 1,900. Subalit iyon po ay hindi naman iyon major issue ng repair," he explained.

(Those machines did not broke down but only had issues. Those were only around 1,800 to 1,900 and those did not need any major repair issues.) 

The May 9 election is the country's first major polls since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Voters were required to wear masks and practice social distancing in cramped schools.

Voting hours on the May 9, 2022 national and local elections was scheduled from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m., or an hour longer than the duration of the 2019 midterm polls, but groups urged the poll body to extend the voting hours amid glitches encountered in VCMs. 

Some voters in Metro Manila precincts ended up waiting in classrooms until late Monday, refusing to hand over their ballots unless the machines got fixed.

Based on partial, unofficial results which accounted for 97.82 percent of votes as of 3:17 p.m. on Tuesday, Marcos Jr. is leading with 30,978,823 votes, followed by Robredo with 14,766,231 votes.

Visit the ABS-CBN News Halalan results page to see the partial unofficial tally of election returns. 

For other updates, visit ABS-CBN News' live blog here. 

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Video from PTV