Manila Bulletin : Mobile app test run launched this month

News & Interviews
1 September 2021

By Leslie Ann Aquino | Manila Bulletin

The Commission on Elections (Comelec) will launch the test run of a mobile app for overseas voters this month.

Comelec Commissioner Rowena Guanzon, Commissioner-in-Charge for Overseas Voting, announced this on Twitter, Thursday, Sept. 1.

“@Comelec Office of Overseas Voting and @DFAPHL will launch the test run of a mobile app for overseas voters this month Sept. Thanks to @DFAPHL @teddyboylocsin,” she said.

Last June, Guanzon said the exploratory test use of a mobile app for overseas voters is “groundbreaking, and the results will have a significant and valuable impact on how elections may be conducted in the future.”

The poll body on June 21, signed the Memoranda of Agreement with two internet voting solutions providers in preparation for the conduct of live test runs of their internet voting systems.

The internet voting test runs form part of the Commission’s exploratory study of internet-based technologies for possible use in internet voting.

The Comelec said the test run is the third phase of the implementation plan, which will involve the actual test voting activity.

“Test voters who have previously signified interest and given consent will participate in a mock election using the solutions providers’ apps or platforms,” it said in a previous statement.

The Comelec said the first and second phases, which involved preparation and presentation, were completed in the last quarter of 2020 and the first quarter of 2021, respectively.

The fourth and last phase will be the evaluation phase, which pertains to the post-election assessment activity to document all stakeholders’ observations, user experience, feedback, comments, and such other matters.

Republic Act No. 9189 or the Overseas Voting Act authorizes the Comelec to explore internet-based technologies for overseas voting.