Inquirer.net : Marcos camp to Comelec: Address reports on malfunctioning VCMs

By Neil Arwin Mercado | Inquirer.net

MANILA, Philippines — The camp of presidential candidate Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. is urging Commission on Elections (Comelec) commissioner Marlon Casquejo to address and look into to reports of non-working vote-counting machines (VCMs) ahead of the national elections.

Atty. Vic Rodriguez, Marcos’ spokesperson, made the call Thursday, as he questioned why Casquejo “is not reporting on the malfunctioning, nonworking and defective VCMs.

“We would like Commissioner Marlon Casquejo to answer circulating reports of a looming delay in the conduct of elections scenario,” Rodriguez said in a statement.

“Why is [Casquejo], as commissioner in charge of the election, conspicuously silent and not being forthright and forthcoming on what is really happening relative to its (Comelec) preparations. Why is he not reporting on the malfunctioning, nonworking and defective VCMs?“ he added.

Rodriguez said Casquejo should make a report in public on the capacity of Comelec’s regional hubs to troubleshoot or replace malfunctioning machines.

“Dapat sabihin niya kung kaya ng nyang tugunan ang pagkumpuni o pagpapalit ng mga magka-problema o depektibong VCMs,” Rodriguez said.

“There is great likelihood of a delay in the conduct of the elections when the problems on VCMs are not timely addressed. And when that happens, it could result to a delayed proclamation or, worse, a no proclamation scenario that could plunge the country into anarchy and spell disaster for our people who are still reeling from the ill-effects of the pandemic,” he added.

INQUIRER.net has asked for Casquejo’s response to Rodriguez, but has yet to receive a reply as of posting time.

The Comelec earlier reported that all the VCMs to be used in the upcoming elections have already been distributed to local hubs.

There have been reports of malfunctioning VCMs not only here in the country, but also among those used for local absentee voting abroad.