Manila Bulletin : Marcos spox prods Comelec to clear up issue on defective VCMs

By Seth Cabanban | Manila Bulletin

The spokesman of presidential bet Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. has issued a statement urging the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to clarify reports of non-functioning vote-counting machines (VCMs).

Specifically, Marcos spokesman lawyer Vic Rodriguez called out Comelec Commissioner Marlon Casquejo to clear the air.

“We would like Commissioner Marlon Casquejo to answer circulating reports of a looming delay in the conduct of elections scenario,” said Rodriguez in a statement on Thursday, May 5.

“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 he is not reporting on the malfunctioning, non-working and defective VCMs?” Rodriguez added.

Manila Bulletin, on the same day, reported that the Comelec had found 355 defective VCMs. This is less than one percent of the 70,000 total VCMs.

Casquejo also added that the 355 defective VCMs have been sent for repairs. He also clarified that the poll body had an extra 1,100 contingency VCMs.

“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,” Rodriguez explained.

Meanwhile, the Comelec also reported on May 5 that they were ready for the 2022 elections, saying it’s “all systems go” for them.