The long wait-A A +A
By Max Sangil
Monday, March 18, 2013
TIME flies so swiftly, so they say. Now it is Tuesday, and before you know it, it is already Friday, and the next day is a weekend. Time to go to the malls. Time to be drinking with friends and kin, or time to re-arrange the closet.
To many it is that way, but for candidates running for public office it seems the days have become longer. As if May 13, election day, is too far and longer than eternity. I bet that many of these candidates wish that they wield a magic wand, wake tomorrow morning and presto, it is May 13.
This is the second time that candidates went to the hustings and tracked the trail so long. The culprit is the introduction of the PCOS machines designed to modernize our election system. It was first introduced in 2010, and candidates are suffering the consequences of a modern system of balloting.
Candidates filed their certificates of candidacy (COC) in the first up to the fifth day of October last year, and ergo each one instantly became fair game. Meaning, you instantly become like fish in the aquarium, your movements being watched in that glass house.
And suddenly, you become the unwilling “philanthropist” who dole out money for prescription medicines, donor for sports tournaments and sponsors for whatever.
In the old election system, there was only one uniformed ballot form for everybody to fill. The ballot carried no names but will be filled in by the voter. As a reminder, in today's system, the names of candidates with corresponding positions are already printed, and your choices will have an egg-shaped drawing across their respective names which you have to shade.
More voters are expected to troop to the polls this coming mid-term elections since polling places will open 7 in the morning till 7 in the evening. It is expected that in less than one hour most of the results will be known by the public, in case there are no glitches of course.
There was a survey conducted if voters trust the efficiency of the PCOS machines, and the interviewed people said they do. There you are folks. Let us cross our fingers with dozens of Hail Marys that there will be no brownout on May 13.
Anywhere you train your sight you see lampposts bedecked with tarpaulins of all sizes of candidates. Many are all outside the Commission on Elections (Comelec) designated poster areas.
During the start of the official campaign period for local officials, which is March 29, it is expected that all those tarpaulins will be removed; otherwise it will be the basis for disqualification. The question now if the Comelec will disqualify them all. All of them are violating several promulgated rules and regulations of the poll body, aside from posting oversized tarpaulins outside of the designated poster areas.
Let's see what's next.
Published in the Sun.Star Pampanga newspaper on March 19, 2013.