Solon: Comelec, Smartmatic to blame in any election delay, glitch

Mar. 12, 2016



Bayan Muna partylist Rep. Carlos Isagani Zarate. (File photo)

DAVAO CITY — Both the Smartmatic and Comelec are to blame for any glitch or delay in the upcoming elections in May, said Bayan Muna partylist representative Carlos Isagani Zarate.

In a statement on Saturday, March 12, Zarate reacted to the Commission on Elections’ pronouncement that the elections may be postponed after the Supreme Court decided to require vote receipts. Zarate said “there is no other party to blame but Comelec and Smartmatic for any glitch or delay in May 9 scheduled polls.”

“Since 2010, Comelec and Smartmatic have deliberately violated our election laws that expressly require Voter Verification Paper Audit Trail or issuance of voter receipts as minimum system capability,”  Zarate said.

“The High Court’s decision is a slap on the Comelec’s defiant stand since 2010.  This voter receipt is not a new issue, thus, Comelec  and Smartmatic should have been prepared for it.  They could not just pull the “no-el” bogey to scare the electorate and get away with not fulfilling its duty to provide a glitch-free and credible elections,” he added.

Zarate warned that the postponement of the May 9 elections will only fuel the growing distrust of our people on the “now clouded automated electoral process.”

He also accused the Aquino administration of benefiting from the no-election scenario.

“In fact, Comelec’s  continued deals with Smartmatic is highly suspicious,” the partylist lawmaker also said adding that the government has a P7-billion deal with it.

He said the billion-peso deal “should have ironed out these glitches and lapses.”

“The automated elections in 2010 and 2013 are marred by transmission glitches, program errors, and other system failures. It caused the disenfranchisement of a large number of voters,” he said. (

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