Comelec proposes faster vote canvassing process

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Sunday, March 9, 2014


THE Commission on Elections (Comelec) is pushing for an amendment in the vote canvassing system to expedite the proclamation of winning national candidates.

“This is not to say that the automated election system has achieved maturity. There is yet work to be done on improving the legal framework of elections. The Comelec recommends that a comprehensive review of Republic Act 9369 be undertaken to revisit the multi-tiered canvassing system,” said the Comelec in its “Report to Congress on the Conduct of the 2013 National and Local Elections.”

The poll body proposes a single stage canvassing system, wherein precinct results are canvassed and consolidated directly by the National Board of Canvassers (NBOC), which is composed of the seven-member Comelec.

“This will greatly speed up the reporting of election results, as well as minimize confusion arising from speculations as to the contents of delayed canvass reports,” the Comelec said.

Under the present canvassing system, election returns (ERs) from every polling precinct are initially transmitted to Municipal/City Board of Canvassers (MBOC/CBOC) for the official canvassing and proclamation of elected city or municipal officials.

The Municipal/City Certificate of Canvass produced by the MBOC/CBOC shall then be transmitted to the Provincial Board of Canvassers (PBOC) for the official canvassing and proclamation of elected provincial officials.

The PBOC shall then come out with the Provincial Certificate of Canvass, which will be transmitted to the NBOC for the official canvassing and proclamation of elected national officials.

The canvassing system for manual polls was maintained even with the introduction of the automated election system in 2010, where uncanvassed results are directly transmitted simultaneously to the national level aside from the municipal, city and provincial level.

In the May 2013 polls, the first six senators were not proclaimed until after three days, followed by three more the next day, while the final three were proclaimed on the fifth day.

But in the May 2010 polls, the proclamation of the first nine winning senatorial candidates was only conducted five days after elections, while the final three were proclaimed more than a week after Election Day.

Proclamation of winning senators under the manual voting took place nearly a month after the polls. (FP/Sunnex)

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