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DAY 22: VOTE MISPRINTS AND VCM BREAKDOWN REPORTED

01 May 2016

Two reported cases of the wrong names appearing in the ballot receipt and one of vote counting machine malfunction marred an otherwise quiet Saturday on Apr 30 at the  Bayanihan Centre.
At the end of the day, a total of 1,143 people cast their votes for the Philippine general election, slightly more than for those of the first two Saturdays of the election.
The total tally for the month-long overseas voting is now 26,701, or 28.8% of the more than 93,000 registered voters.
The first incident happened in room 402 at about 10:30am when a female voter complained that she marked opposition candidate Rodrigo Duterte on her ballot but saw instead the name of rival candidate Mar Roxas on the receipt.
Ryan Salac's ballot was not read by the VCM
In a similar case, a woman who cast her vote at around 3pm in Room 500 claimed she voted for presidential candidate Miriam Defensor Santiago but the receipt bore the name of deceased aspirant Roy Señeres.
Both women called the attention of the special board of election inspectors and filed formal complaints using pro forma affidavit forms prepared by election officials.
“You fill up a complaint form so we could forward it to the Comelec (Commission on Elections),” Vice Consul Alex Vallespin, who is overseeing the balloting in Hong Kong, told the woman in the first incident.
“But they’re telling us that of the more than 26,000 who have voted in Hong Kong, you’re just one of the 13 who complained, out of whom only two formally filed their complaint to the Comelec,” Vallespin said.
The two cases today brought the number of complaints to 15, with four of them formalized by the aggrieved voters.
Vallespin remained puzzled about how the reported quirks happened. He said that as of Apr 29, the election secretariat at Bayanihan had documented and elevated to the Comelec complaints about alleged receipt misprints by the vote counting machines.
The VCMs issue receipts showing the names of candidates the voters marked on their ballots. The voters are asked to check the receipts before putting these in a drop box.
In yet another incident, a voting machine in Room 601 refused to scan the ballot of the last voter of the day, Ryan Salac, who cast his vote at around 5:10pm. 
After consulting Vice Consul Alex Vallespin, the special board of election inspectors (SBEI) in that room sealed the ballot of Salac, had him sign the envelope and told him to return tomorrow morning to try to re-feed his ballot into the machine.
Meanwhile, four of the 12 voters whose ballots were declared spoiled when a vote counting machine broke down in Room 502 the previous Saturday, returned to cast their votes again today, Vallespin said.
The other eight had already been notified to come and vote again tomorrow, he said. – Vir B. Lumicao




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