MANILA — President Rodrigo Duterte urged the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to look into hundreds of vote-counting machines (VCMs) that malfunctioned during the May 9 elections to dispel doubts on the integrity of results.
VCM glitches on Monday forced some to stay in line for hours or surrender their ballots for batch-feeding into the machines while waiving their right to a voter's receipt.
"Sabi nila na nasira na [machines at] hindi nakabasa ng vote. I hope that Comelec will also find time to investigate, just to disabuse the minds of those na may dayaan (who think there was cheating)," said Duterte in a taped address to the public aired on Thursday.
"Wala akong nakita sa totoo lang at hindi ako papayag. Pero ganoon pa lang, just to satisfy the doubts of a few of them para maimbestigahan ang results, ibigay sa tao kung ano ang nangyari," he added.
(They said machines bogged down and could not read votes... I saw no cheating, in truth, and I will not allow that. However, just to satisfy the doubts of a few of them, investigate the results and explain to the people what happened.)
The poll body earlier said at least 1,800 of some 106,000 VCMs broke down on election day. But the Comelec said the vote count was accurate and should not be doubted.
Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos, Jr. leads the presidential race with at least 31.1 million votes, more than double the 14.8 million tally of his closest rival Leni Robredo, based on partial, unofficial tallies aggregated from Comelec data as of 9:17 a.m.