BACOLOD City mayoral candidate Jocelle Batapa-Sigue expressed dismay over malfunctioned vote counting machines (VCMs) in various polling precincts in the city on May 13.
Batapa-Sigue, of “Asenso para sa Buas-damlag sang Bacolodnon Magbinuligay Kita sa Kauswagan (ABB-MKK), said she received several reports from her supporters and volunteers that there were several malfunctioned VCMs in various polling precincts.
“I think the people of Bacolod deserve to really know the truth. We have many reports on ground of many violations such as the defective machines,” she said.
She added they are waiting for the actual figures on the result of the elections.
Batapa-Sigue noted that in one barangay, she received reports that because of the brownout, the ballots of the 16 voters were rejected by the machine.
“I have so many supporters appealing to know where their votes go. There were so many complaints how their votes were violated. We want to know the truth, we want to know the real scores even if I lost. I want to know how many people really voted for me because right now I do not believe in the figures because there were several defective machines,” Batapa-Sigue said.
She said she will discuss this to her group to address the complaints.
Batapa-Sigue also pointed out that the Bacolod City Police Office (BCPO) and Commission on Elections (Comelec) failed to address the vote buying in various barangays.
“Every 30 minutes on Monday, my supporters were crying and calling me asking for support because of the vote buying in front of the authorities within their barangays,” Batapa-Sigue said.
She said she texted the Comelec many times, but there was no reply, adding the Comelec and the authorities failed to act on the alleged massive vote buying.
Batapa-Sigue also expressed her gratitude to all those who supported and volunteered their time, resources and efforts for her campaign and for the whole slate of ABB-MKK.
For her part, City election registrar Ann Janette Lamban said the malfunctioned VCMs did not affect the result of the elections.
Lamban said some polling precincts experienced a mechanical problem, but they were able to fix it immediately.
“We have a contingency to fix our VCMs. This year’s election was generally very peaceful though we encountered some mechanical problem, but still we were able to make it,” she added.
Lamban noted that she also received some reports of alleged vote buying a day before the elections, but they were not able to locate them.
The BCPO also received reports of alleged vote buying, but it turned out negative.