Start of vote-counting machine testing ‘flawless’: Comelec

PREPARATION. Official ballots and other election paraphernalia arrive at the City Treasurer Office’s at the Sangguniang Panlungsod building, Davao City on Tuesday (May 3, 2022). The Commission on Elections has started the Final Testing and Sealing of vote counting machines nationwide. (PNA photo by Robinson Niñal Jr.)

MANILA – The Commission on Elections (Comelec) on Tuesday said the start of the Final Testing and Sealing (FTS) of vote-counting machines (VCMs) did not encounter any issues.

Comelec Chair Saidamen Pangarungan, who attended an FTS activity held at San Juan Elementary School in San Juan City, said the successful activity will encourage voters to participate in the May 9 polls.

“I will consider it flawless, perfect. I’m very thankful that it turned out this way,” he said in an interview. “I’m sure this will have a positive impact in voting because the people can see that the electoral process is okay as seen during the FTS.”

Commissioner George Garcia urged the public to support FTS activities.

“You can observe in your respective precincts or even participate in testing our voting machines,” he said in a television interview.

The Poll Automation Law requires the conduct of final examination and testing of the VCMs to be used in each polling precinct.

After the process, the VCMs shall be closed and sealed by the electoral board and will only be opened again on election day.

The FTS shall end on May 7, also the last day of the campaign period.

The Comelec said 226 cities and municipalities will hold their FTS on Wednesday, 402 on Thursday, 451 on Friday, and 259 on Saturday.

Garcia likewise reported that the dispatch and delivery of the 106,174 vote VCMs for Monday’s polls is nearly complete

“More or less, we are almost 100 percent in the whole Philippines. We need to complete them in time for the FTS,” he said. (PNA)

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