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DAY 15: FOURTH VOTE COUNTING MACHINE CRASHES

23 April 2016

The defective machine has been shipped back to Comelec
Another vote counting machine crashed today, Apr 23, at Bayanihan Centre, the fourth to break down since overseas voting began here two weeks ago.
The incident which happened at around 2:45 pm, caused Consulate officials to scramble to come up with contingency arrangements ahead of what is expected to be another heavy voter turnout tomorrow. Sunday.
The day ended with a total of 1,179 voters casting their ballots, the highest Saturday count so far in the month-long overseas voting for the Philippine national elections.
This brings the total tally in 15 days of voting to 17,653, or 19%  of the more than 93,000 registered voters in Hong Kong.
Three voters who failed to insert their ballots into the machine in room 501 were asked to put them inside sealed individual envelopes which they were asked to sign, then hand over to the Special Board of Election Inspectors for safekeeping. They will have to reinsert their own ballots into another machine at a future date.
Vice Consul Alex Vallespin who heads the electoral board, immediately sent out an urgent request for the Commission on Elections to send four new spare machines to Hong Kong by Monday.
He is, however, optimistic that the latest machine breakdown will not cause too much of a problem tomorrow, when another voter surge is expected.
Last Sunday, Apr 17, more than 6,000 people cast their votes, the biggest tally for a single day in the ongoing election. – Vir B. Lumicao

Voter’s rage
There was more drama at Bayanihan Centre today when a woman claiming to be a resident reportedly blew her top upon learning that she could not vote because her name had been deactivated by Comelec.
According to a Facebook post by Consul Charles Macaspac, the woman failed to vote in the past three overseas elections.
Comelec has deactivated the registration of voters who failed to cast their ballots in at least two successive elections. If they wanted to get back on the voters' list, they should have applied for reactivation during the prescribed period which ended in December last year.
"We were not informed! You should have texted us, trabaho ninyo yan! Ang hirap sa inyo, OFW lang inaasikaso ninyo! OFW lang sila, residente kami!", the woman reportedly shouted.
That led Macaspac to step in and tell her she should have read the reports in community newspapers and watched Philippine television. The woman retorted by saying she only read the SCMP and watched ABS-CBN.
Macaspac’s post about the irate voter drew the ire of many Filipinos, who were particularly incensed by the woman’s arrogant assertion that she, as a resident, had better rights than an OFW.
Obviously miffed himself, Macaspac closed his post with the statement: “Isang boto po para sa bawat isang rehistradong Filipino. Walang residente, walang OFW, lahat Filipino.”


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