Election watchdog Kontra Daya stressed that the breakdown of vote counting machines (VCMs) today (May 9) is much worse compared to the past two election cycles.
Comelec said at least 1,800 VCMs malfunctioned this year (Fernandez, 2022). This is almost double the 2016 and 2019 data.
In November 2021, Comelec said that 96,981 of the 97,315 VCMs have already been refurbished, with a P637-million refurbishment contract that was awarded to Smartmatic (Esmaquel II, 2019).
Machine errors, including paper jams and ballot rejection, are among the causes of delayed elections. This has resulted in long queues outside the poll precincts, or voters being told to leave their ballots in the hands of their election officers for them to feed it later when the machine is fixed.
Kontra Daya fears this may lead to disenfranchisement.
There are around 2,000 backup VCMs that were supposedly “strategically” deployed in the area. ###
Fernandez, D. (2022, May 9). Some 1,800 vote counting machines malfunctioned-COMELEC. Inquirer.net. https://newsinfo.inquirer.net/1594477/fwd-some-1800-vote-counting-machines-malfunctioned-comelec
Esmaquel II, P. (2019, May 14). COMELEC says 961 vote-counting machines defective. Rappler. https://www.rappler.com/nation/elections/230604-comelec-says-vote-counting-machines-defective/
Santos, J. (2022, May 6). Almost 2K backup VCMs prepared for May polls—Comelec. Manila Bulletin. https://mb.com.ph/2022/05/06/almost-2k-backup-vcms-prepared-for-may-polls-comelec/