THE Commission on Elections (Comelec) will conduct mock elections Saturday, February 6, to simulate the whole process of election day.

“The mock elections is to simulate the process of voting, counting, canvassing and transmission,” said Comelec Commissioner Gregorio Larrazabal.

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The voting period will start at 8 a.m. and will close at 10 a.m. unlike the 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. schedule to be implemented on election day.

“At 7 a.m., there will be diagnostics, the basic start-up. The hour of seven to eight will be primarily for setting up the precinct,” explained Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez.

The municipal board of canvassers will be stationed at their respective city halls and the national board of canvasser will be at the Comelec office.

There are nine mock election sites located all over the country where a total of 6,909 registered voters are invited to participate. These polling places include:

Metro Manila/National Capital Region

Quezon City - New Era Elementary School (five precincts and 760 registered voters)

Taguig City - Maharlika Elementary School (five precincts and 996 voters) and Gen. Ricardo Papa Memorial High School (six precincts and 720 registered voters)

Benguet

Baguio City - Pines City National High School (three precincts and 544 registered voters) and Pines City National High School (four precincts and 696 registered voters)

Cebu

Cebu City - Bulacao Community School (six precincts and 983 registered voters) and Mabini Elementary School (three precincts and 475 registered voters)

Davao del Sur

Davao City - Alejandra Navarro Elementary School (five precincts and 879 registered voters) and Generoso Elementary School (five precincts and 856 registered voters)

The names printed in the training ballots are those of the national heroes such as Jose Rizal, Emilio Aguinaldo, among others as well as popular bands, Bamboo and Eraserheads since the poll body cannot print the names of the real candidates.

Source code turnover

In a related development, Larrazabal said that Comelec and Systest Labs failed to hand over the master copy of the source code to the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Friday.

“The BSP said they have to pass a resolution for it to be accepted,” according to the commissioner.

Instead, Comelec will be giving out the hash codes to the representatives of political parties. The hash code is the fingerprint of the software, which will allow the party to verify if that's the same software that was certified.

The source code review has also been opened to the public on Friday. Interested parties and organizations can view the source code at the Project Management Office (PMO) at Comelec in Intramuros, Manila.

The commission earlier said the source code review of political parties and other organizations is not meant for another audit because Systest Labs has already performed the audit.

Reviewers are required by Comelec to submit a report of their review.

The poll body is also set to conduct another meeting with political parties on the walk-thru of the whole certification process.

"It's more extensive as compared to the last time but we invite political parties again because a lot of them has expressed interest especially in the certification process and what were the activities conducted so we hope they'll attend," said Larrazabal. (Kathrina Alvarez/Sunnex)