Press Release
February 26, 2009

Pia: Extinguish 'hybrid elections' proposal

Senator Pia S. Cayetano today expressed strong opposition to the proposal to conduct a 'hybrid' poll scheme that will combine automated and manual voting in next year's general elections, saying the process would be more prone to cheating, more tedious and more expensive.

"I support the position of Comelec Chair Jose Melo in resisting the so-called 'hybrid' elections."

"The proposal will complicate and further confuse the vote counting process, which will only serve the purposes of poll cheats. It will only open opportunities for cheat operators to use their 'Garci' templates again extensively, holding candidates hostages," Cayetano explained.

She added that the proposal would be more tedious and expensive compared to full automation, which is the system envisioned under Republic Act 9369 or the 'Elections Automation Act' which was enacted 11 years ago.

"Just imagine that the Comelec would have to produce, disseminate, canvass and secure two sets of ballots for all precints. It would also have to deploy two separate sets of personnel for processing both systems."

"This hybrid elections idea should thus be extinguished now," she concluded.

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