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Comelec-Naga runs VCM roadshows for first-time voters

By Jason B. Neola

The Commission on Election (Comelec) in Naga City is in the series of conducting Vote Counting Machine (VCM) roadshows for first-time voters, teachers, and volunteers from Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (PPCRV) to see how the machine works and how it will be used on Election Day.

The VCMs will be the machines that will be used by the poll body in the canvassing of the votes in the precinct level before the data will be subsequently transmitted to the city board of canvassers, the national board of canvassers, the Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (PPCRV), the accredited citizens’ arm of the commission.

Lawyer Ednalyn Garcia-Referiza, Naga’s newly designated election officer for the May 9, 2022 polls, said the roadshow forms part of the Comelec’s voter’s information campaign. She said there will be a continuous pre-election voter education to make voters fully aware of their duties and responsibilities.

“We are doing this [information drive] to ensure that the sanctity of our ballots on the day of the elections and for the voters to be aware of their contributions in making the elections honest, orderly, peaceful, inclusive and transparent,” the poll official said.

CLEAN ELECTION Accuracy in the counting of votes is what the Comelec wants to ensure in the conduct of its Vote Counting Machine (VCM) roadshow demonstration recently. Photo shows the machine being fed with ballot. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

Referiza said that her office also has been conducting series of coordinating conferences with personnel of the Naga City Police Office, the Philippine Coast Guard, and Bureau of Fire Protection, to come up with a deployment and strategic plan to ensure a peaceful and credible elections.

During the conference, the participants present security updates of their respective concerns as well as the actions they are going to undertake as they implement the rules and regulations of the Commission on Elections.

On Election Day, the Comelec will maintain a special polling place inside the Naga City District Jail in Barangay Del Rosario to enable inmates to vote. “We will first conduct an orientation with regards to the casting of votes by Persons Deprived of Liberty (PDLs) that will be done inside the facility of the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology,” she said.

Express lanes will also be set up at the voting centers in the city’s 27 barangays to ensure a smooth flow of voters belonging to the Persons with Disability (PWD) sector. “The PWDs are permitted to be assisted by a relative while they are in the process of voting,” she said.

Referiza, who lives in Legazpi City and works as election officer in the municipality of Ligao in Albay before her brief assignment in Naga, said the VCMs will be set up in various polling centers in the city either on May 4 or 5 for a test drive.

“Its [test drive] purpose is to show to the public that VCMs count accurately. “The setting up at the voting centers of VCMs five or four days earlier than the election day is necessary to allow the public to see and prove the readiness and accuracy of the VCMs,” she said.


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