THE Commission on Elections (Comelec) will purchase more than 1,000 precinct count optical scan (PCOS) machines for the special elections in four provinces.

Commissioner Gregorio Larrazabal said they will be shelling out P52 million to acquire 1,084 PCOS machines including 142 back-up machines

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He added that acquiring the machines is more practical, noting that they will earn once the machines are used in the process on electoral protests to be filed before the Commission.

“The decision of the en banc is we will be purchasing the machines needed for the special elections because these machines will still be needed for protest cases," said Larrazabal.

A total of 942 machines will be utilized in the special elections, which the poll body has yet to schedule.

In the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (Armm), particularly in the province of Basilan and Lanao del Sur, 345 and 27 machines are needed, respectively.

The poll body needs 128 for Dinagat Island in the Caraga region, and 442 for Bulacan and Central Luzon.

Larrazabal said that among the responsibilities of buying the machines includes the printing of the ballots, configuration of the system and other expenses.

He promised to give further details on the proposal as soon as the seven-man panel decides on it today, Tuesday.

“We can give it to you as soon as we have an en banc as we haven’t yet decided with finality on the proposal,” he said.

Earlier, Comelec Chairman Jose Melo said that they will be purchasing 487 PCOS machines to be used in the special polls. (FP/Sunnex)