By: Elena Grace Flores
Comelec’s explanation to the Supreme Court that sits as the Presidential Electoral Tribunal (PET) dismays the Marcos Camp. The Supreme Court orders the poll body to shed light on the missing ballot images. This is in the ongoing protest of former Senator Bongbong Marcos. The agency blames the teachers instead. Thus triggers some Marcos loyalists to make a move.
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Not Seeking for the Truth
“The sparse explanation given by the Comelec to the PET just shows their lack of interest in finding out the reason for the disappearance of those ballot images. Blaming the teachers who just did what they were told is quite lame. Its nothing but a convenient excuse on their part,” said Marcos’ spokesperson Atty. Vic Rodriguez.
Comelec’s Answer to the Supreme Court
As part of their explanation to the Supreme Court, the Comelec made reference to its internal memorandum dated July 22, 2019. It said that “The audit logs obtained during the decryption of the SD cards of the above-stated clustered precincts reveal that the Electoral Boards (EBs) used the ‘REZERO’ command. This was before shutting down the Vote Counting Machines (VCMs). As a result, all the reports and ballot images stored in the SD cards were permanently deleted.”
Blaming the Teachers
According to the Comelec, the teachers (Electoral Board) were told “to only use the “REZERO” command during the Final Testing and Sealing before the elections.” The memo, however, did not say when the “REZEROING” of the VCMs was done. It is also not known under whose authority which is a clear breach of protocol.
It was intentional to “eliminate any possible link between the ballot and the voter,” the Comelec said. “Comelec’s explanation for the scrambled ballot images is preposterous. The information contained in the SD cards are very voluminous. It would pose a great challenge to anyone who wants to retrace the records to a specific voter,” said Atty. Rodriguez. Despite this, Marcos calms the loyalists down and pleads not to stage any protest. He’s confident that he will win after all.