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1,265 voted on 2nd day of overseas voting marred by fake exit polls

11 April 2022

By The SUN 

Bayanihan exit: No viable survey could have taken place here amid tight security

Fake exit polls showing improbable sample figures marred the second day of overseas voting in Hong Kong.

According to Consul General Raly Tejada, 1,265 Filipinos turned out to cast their ballots on the second day of overseas voting for the Philippines’ next president, vice president, 12 senators and new partylist representatives.

“Not bad for a weekday,” Congen Tejada said.


But the day started in controversy when various posts supposedly showing varying tallies of exit polls conducted in Hong Kong on the first day of voting surfaced on social media.

The supposed exit polls showed samples that either exceeded the day’s turnout of 3,285 or were made to fit the number exactly, in an attempt to correct their earlier mistake of posting overblown and obviously fictitious numbers.

The Consulate's official announcement of the turnout
was taken out after it was used to call out the fake pollsters

One of those who posted the clearly falsified exit poll figures was Jay Sonza, a Manila-based former journalist and now known as a rabid supporter of presidential candidate Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. and his running mate, Sara Duterte.

In a post that immediately went viral, Sonza showed a tally sheet that came from Hong Kong overseas Filipino worker and Marcos-Duterte supporter Bryan Calagui that purportedly had Marcos getting 3,780 votes in an exit poll, far exceeding the total day’s turnout.

Fake: Sonza posted Calagui's handwritten tally showing the improbable vote count

In comparison, Marcos’ closest rival, Vice President Leni Robredo, supposedly received only 89 votes. There was no number given for the other contenders, Manila Mayor Isko Moreno, Senator Manny Pacquiao or Senator Panfilo Lacson.

Without giving the total number of people surveyed, Calagui posted on his own wall that Marcos won 85% of the votes, which did not tally with the numbers he supplied for the two candidates.

Even more stupendous was the 3,987 votes listed for Duterte, while the only other vice-presidential candidate mentioned, Dr Willie Ong, only had 23 votes. Again, the other contenders for the post including Robredo’s running mate, Senator Kiko Pangilinan, were not mentioned at all in the tally.


Calagui posted his tally sheet which he appears to have completed all by himself shortly after 6pm, nearly two hours before the Consulate had finished tallying the actual votes cast and issuing  a public announcement of the day’s turnout.

A mask-less Calagui is shown taking pictures of his tally sheet in an FB post  

The Consulate's official announcement of the day's turnout on its Facebook page mysteriously disappeared Monday afternoon after various groups used it in denouncing the fake surveys.

Probably realizing their mistake of preempting the Consulate's announcement of the official tally some unknown pollsters from the same camp gave other results where the total number of supposed respondents nearly matched the official tally.


In one tally sheet Marcos was shown to get a total of 3,124 votes for a 96.80% share of the entire 3,225 votes tallied, while Robredo trailed at 2%.

Another showed Marcos getting 3,336 votes, or a mind-boggling 97.14% share of the 3,434 voters supposedly surveyed.

Fake: Another exit poll result with obviously manufactured tally

In Manila, a certain Kim Indar tweeted another purported exit poll in Hong Kong showing Marcos with an even bigger lead, garnering 3,357 votes compared with Robredo’s 65. The rest of the candidates were shown to have received negligible support.

Again, the figures looked suspicious since a true exit poll would have only a small percentage of the actual number of people who voted. This is because many voters decline to be surveyed, or convincing them to take part and reveal their choice of candidates takes time.

In addition, many of them come out of the voting center all at the same time so there should be a number of pollsters waiting by the exit gates to get them all to participate.


In this particular instance, conducting a viable exit poll would also have been impossible because police and volunteers were everywhere and they all made sure people who were going in and out of Bayanihan Centre did not linger by the gates, in line with the government’s strict pandemic restrictions.

The security was so tight, in fact, that the police had to ask the Consulate to stop people from queuing less than four hours after the polling started, saying they had difficulty controlling the crowd.

Consulate officials acknowledged being told that some women pollsters had tried to approach some voters after they had cast their ballots late in the afternoon. But the advice they gave was simple: “Ignore them.”

However, the fake story appeared to have gained enough traction that Commission on Elections spokesperson James Jimenez had to explain that “as a general rule, unless a known and reputable survey firm released the exit poll, this is not reliable."

He also reminded people that the actual results of the election won't be known until after May 9, when all the votes cast will be counted, whether abroad or in the Philippines.

Meanwhile, the second day of voting went by without a hitch, except for one vote counting machine which had to be shut down and recalibrated after being fed with 1,000 ballots.

The SD card in the machine had to be taken out along with the ballot box, and both had to be sealed and kept in a secure place until the start of the canvassing on May 9.

A new SD card was then inserted into the VCR and a new ballot box set up before voting resumed, a process that reportedly took no less than 30 minutes.

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