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Colmenares blasts Comelec for hours-long delay in release of poll results

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Makabayan senatorial candidate and Bayan Muna chairman Neri Colmenares on Tuesday expressed disgust at the hours-long delay in the release of results of the midterm elections through the transparency server of the Commission on Elections (Comelec).

“The Makabayan coalition is disgusted and extremely concerned with last night’s unacceptable delay in informing the public of the senatorial and party-list results,” the former Bayan Muna representative said.

“The essence of automating the election is speed and transparency but the national canvassing is being beset with delay and secrecy,” Colmenares said.

“In the past, dagdag-bawas took place amidst the delays in canvassing and lack of transparency. That is what automation was supposed to cure. But apparently, Comelec has failed on both counts,” he said.

“Worse there was no clear explanation for a long time,” Colmenares noted.

“The impact of this unforgivable delay is that the credibility of the national elections will be permanently tainted. It is not unreasonable for people to suspect that results were being doctored. The other impact may have been trending,” he said.

“The minds of the public were conditioned when Comelec posted the initial 0.40 percent of the votes showing pro-administration bets leading and nothing else for the next seven hours,” he said.

“The explanation that the results have been transmitted to Comelec but the problem is merely ‘pushing’ the data to the media is unacceptable as well as unbelivable, considering this is the third time Comelec is conducting electronic transmission of the election results,” he added.

“Coupled with reports of massive vote buying, failure of vote counting machines and SD cards, and confusion in polling places, the credibility of this election has become tainted,” he said.

“We demand a full explanation from the Comelec and Smartmatic. Otherwise, the credibility of this year’s elections will be in doubt,” Colmenares said.

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