Tuesday, May 04, 2010

JUNK THE AUTOMATED ELECTION

Automated systems operate on the basis of trust. That’s why extensive and thorough testing often precedes massive deployment of any automated system. ATM machines would not be as successful and ubiquitous as they are today if, during its initial rollout, debits and cash disbursements were erroneous.

The glitch in the testing of PCOS machines yesterday irreversibly crushes the people’s trust that the system badly needs. Errors in feeding of ballots, or even in transmissions are bad enough, but forgivable. But errors in counting are simply unacceptable.

Even if COMELEC is successful in recalling, reconfiguring, and redeploying the 76,000+ flash cards – a daunting task in and of itself - these need several test runs to regain the people’s trust and confidence.

With less than a week to go, there is simply no time. It would be foolish for COMELEC to proceed with the automation without the trust of candidates and voters. Every losing candidate would demand a recount, by simply claiming a possible glitch in the PCOS.

There is so much at stake in the coming May elections. And we cannot afford to run an election devoid of any credibility.

The Black and White Movement appeals with the highest sense of urgency that COMELEC abandon the use of PCOS machines in the coming elections and revert to the manual system. It may take longer to determine the results, but it is much better than producing results in a day or two that no one will believe anyway.

17 comments:

Joeriz said...

this is so true...how unfortunate it is for the Philippines to have a committee on election as USELESS as them... they've prepared it for more than a year and yet...the errors and issues remain... I HOPE this would not lead into another "FAILURE of ELECTION"...

Anyway, we already had a FAILURE of ELECTION...having GMA remain in seat for 9 PAINFUL years... I guess, the Filipinos will endure more years of hardship.... I hope NOT =(

JOHN J. said...

Please, make GSIS as an example to them, specially to the COMELEC! It seems that this constitutional body is 70% sure that this kind of system will work. As reported, they expect 30% as the system margin of error and the remaining 70% for them is already acceptable! How many years now that the GSIS had computerized their member's records? But until now, their computerize systems are still a problem rather than a solution!! Ask a government worker who is a member of this Government Financial Institution.

Myrna said...

And the hacking!!!

This site says it all:

http://www.noypiako.org/aes/hacks

Removing the safeguards like digital signature and the ways how they can do it. Where in the end they will just deceive the public!

Bilib ako senyo! Mabuhay si Noynoy!

Rick said...

This is very disturbing. I read an article today by Perry Diaz of Pinoy Weekly (May 1-7 issue). His article states "Who Owns Smartmatic-TIM?" Please have some time and read his article. Now, with todays drama unfolding before our eyes, a divine intervation had just happenned. The Comelec must revert to manual counting.

Helga said...

Hi, Rick, we read the post on Smartmatic-TIM and would just like to share some information, in the interest of fairness, as some points in the post are factually wrong.

Old timers in the IT industry (including Gus Lagman, a BnW convener, and Jun Lozada) know TIM quite well. It is owned by Jose Mari Antunez and it has been in the IT business since the late 80s, not in 2008 only as this article implies.

TIM made its money from providing 3rd party maintenance services to IBM mainframe users and by selling refurbished IBM mainframe computers. They were big in the early to mid-90s with most of the commercial banks as clients.

For the automated elections, a consortium called Smartmatic-TIM was formed since that is the requirement of the bid. We are not completely aware of the composition of the management of this new company. But what we do know is that TIM, or Mari Antunez, has very little say. In fact, if you will recall, Antunez wanted to withdraw from the deal, but reluctantly agreed after being threatened by Comelec with lawsuits.

Ronan C. Masangcay said...

If they want to beta test the re-configured flash cards, they can do it in their own country.

We should call for a resignation of PGMA and all of the staff in comelec who where involved in the planning, purchase and implementation of this very important project.

Can this be done? Can we still call for a people power and ask the head of PGMA and the comelec staff?

Richelda.Com/Baguio.Biz said...

Praying that "chaos" will not happen comes May 10,2010."Panahon na ng Pagbabago sa Pilipinas!Magbago na ren kayo mga taga COMELEC!" Do we need to "Tie a Yellow Ribbon" everywhere after May 10,2010? richelda.com

Helga said...

The general feeling in many circles is that the No-El scenario may really be something to watch out for. We must press for elections on Monday as mandated by law. If Comelec doesn't bend and admit that a Parallel Manual Count is the way to assure our voters that their ballots have been counted accurately, then we could be in for a very bumpy electoral ride on Monday.

Rick said...

Hello Helga, Thank you for your response. Please comment on Mr. Diaz article. Thank you for your support.

http://thepinoyweekly.com/?cons=full&conid=4&author=10

OL2GEDER said...

COMELEC is true to its form, always inefficient, unreliable, disorganized and even corrupt. Every time there are elections, people are always crossing their fingers and ask will they be able to deliver or not. The irony is that we still allow this bunch of mostly oldies coupled with young & ambitious commissioners to have control over a very important "do or die"election. Are these COMELEC guys being too proud not to admit that they cannot handle this job? Well this is not the time to be proud but time to be honest enough to declare the truth when there is still time and with no unsurmountable consequences yet. COMELEC and Smartmatic should not blame us for our disbelief in their capabilities. How can they expect us to look forward to positive outcome when they have been fumbling almost every step of the way?

Helga said...

You hit the proverbial nail on the head, ol2geder. We have been governed by administrations that have not been inclusive of the people. We have been barred from weighing in, our opinions largely go unheeded. Am hoping that the next administration will be made up of leaders that listen, that are compassionate and mindful of us. I don't think these folk at Comelec have much to be proud of and will happily slink away into anonymity. But not before we get our pound of flesh. They must be accountable to us.

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joven said...
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joven said...
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compact said...

Now that Noynoy won are their complaints? It seems that the act of cheating elections depends on the outcome. anyway great blogs, mines are at the News discussions

joven said...
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