Comelec mock elections held
LEGAZPI CITY --- With no major operational glitches except for not getting a hundred percent voters’ turnout because of the distance of voting centers, the overall implementation of the mock election conducted last Saturday went smoothly and orderly, the Commission on Elections (Comelec) in Bicol said on Monday, January 21. Lawyer Romeo Serrano, Comelec assistant regional director, said the mock election last Saturday were held at voting centers in remote villages of the town of Matnog and Sorsogon City in Sorsogon and in the town of Buhi and Iriga City in Camarines Sur. The mock elections were held in 40 provinces nationwide, two of which were in Bicol. Serrano in a phone interview said the result of the mock election was “in general orderly except for the remoteness of location of voting centers as well as the voters.” The mock election is in preparation for the upcoming May 13 midterm election. The activity also aimed to ensure that the security features, accuracy, integrity and functional capability of the AES (automated election system), specifically the Voters Counting Machine (VCM), he said, Under the Comelec guidelines, the agency invites voters to participate in the mock polls, using fictitious names or names of singers and actors as candidates for various positions. The mock voting had 100 voters each in four remote voting precincts in Matnog town and Sorsogon City, and another four precincts in Buhi town and Iriga City in Camarines Sur. The mock polls were held in remote Barangays Purupandan and Banugaw in Matnog town and Panlayaan and Sawanga in Sorsogon City all in Sorsogon. In Camarines Sur, they were held in Barangays San Nicolas and Perpetual in Iriga City and barangays Namurabod and Burocbusoc in Buhi town. Serrano said the Comelec so far has not encountered system problems in transmitting the result of the mock election from the Electoral Board (EB), formerly called as the Board of Election Inspectors (BEI) at the precinct level to the municipal level where the results would be canvassed and consolidated and then transmitted to the provincial board and finally to the national level. He said around 70 percent of the 800 expected registered voters were able to cast their votes and took them at least 10 minutes to accomplish their respective ballots and enter them on the Voter’s Counting Machine (VCM).