LIFE’S INSPIRATIONS: “… The LORD detests dishonest scales, but accurate weights find favor with him…” (Proverbs 11:1, the Holy Bible).
SMARTMATIC’S GOODWILL AMONG GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS: I don’t know how Smartmatic does it, but it seems it has an incredible amount of goodwill among officials of government who have something to do with elections, starting with the Commission on Elections, to enable it to be romping off with contracts allowing it to handle electoral exercises in this country almost unchallenged, the forthcoming 2016 polls, in particular.
Did we not hear many people questioning the integrity of the 2010 and 2013 elections that Smartmatic handled for the Philippines? Did they not attribute fraudulent manipulation in the results it released, especially in connection with the 2013 midterm elections where a 60-30-10 pattern of vote apportionment favoring administration candidates was fully confirmed by information technology experts?
Did we not also hear many people questioning why, inexplicably, Smartmatic had been standing firm in its refusal to release technical information about its system, especially its source code for the 2013 elections, despite Supreme Court orders for it to do so? Did we not hear, further, people complaining about its having removed the security features of the machines it used for the elections in 2010 and 2013?
WHY CHOOSE SMARTMATIC AGAIN FOR 2016? And so, the inevitable question crops up once more: why choose Smartmatic again for the crucial 2016 presidential elections? Is there no one else who can do what Smartmatic is supposed to be doing during elections? And, indeed, why are the people who were loudly protesting Smartmatic’s continuing involvement in Philippine elections suddenly became silent?
What is more important, as far as I can see, is the inexplicable silence of candidates vying for the presidency in 2016 on the issue of Smartmatic’s continuing grip on Philippine elections. Either they are convinced of Smartmatic’s integrity, contrary to the claims of critical information technology experts, or they are simply uncaring.
It was thus a welcome sight that two small political parties, the Kilusang Bagong Lipunan (KBL) of the Marcoses and the Partido ng Lapiang Manggagawa (PLM) of lawyer Jose Miguel Malvar Villegas, jointly filing a case against Smartmatic and its use of the discredited election machines known as PCOS (precinct count optical scan) machines, but then nothing is ever heard of that case again.
HOW TO ASSURE A FAIR 2016 ELECTIONS: If I were to be insistent on assuring a fair fight for 2016, I should be concerned and be doing something like what the KBL and the PLM had done recently, and more. I would be mounting a noisy campaign to bring out all the previous issues about alleged cheating in the use of PCOS machines, because it is only by being noisy that we can compel the authorities to act.
The fact is that, there are now many recorded cases of election cheating during the elections handled by Smartmatic, in Nueva Ecija, in Pasay City, and in many other places for example, which can be used as starting point for an honest to goodness investigation of what Smartmatic had been doing, and how far PCOS machines can be manipulated.
The time to act is now, while elections are still almost a year away. It would do well for everyone, Smartmatic and the Comelec included, as well as the entire Aquino government, to prove the accuracy and truthfulness of these PCOS machines. Otherwise, the 2016 results will once again be branded as cheated, destabilizing whoever would be proclaimed.
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