SC gives Comelec 2 days to disclose all poll preparations
Manila (7 May) -- THE Supreme Court finally intervened in the brewing electoral crisis when it ordered the Commission on Elections (Comelec) on Thursday to disclose all its preparations for the country's first automated elections scheduled on Monday, May 10.
"The Court may, and given the alarming developments of late in the run-up to the May 10, 2010 elections, should compel Comelec to disclose the complete details of its preparations," the court said in a 20-page resolution penned by Senior Justice Antonio Carpio.
According to the resolution, the Comelec should make the disclosure within two days upon receipt of the resolution.
Among the details the high court wants the Comelec to make public are the nature and security of all equipment and devices, including hardware and software components, that will be used on election day; the source code for review by interested parties; and the terms and protocols of the random manual audit.
The SC also ordered the poll body to show certifications that the entire automated election system (AES) is fully functional with all its continuity plans in place, and that the 240,000 Board of Election Inspectors (BEIs) all over the country are trained to use the new election system.
The certification on the AES' full functionality must come from the Comelec's Technical Evaluation Committee, while that on BEI training must come from the Department of Science and Technology (DOST), the court said.
The resolution granted the petition filed by former Vice President Teofisto Guingona Jr., Protestant Bishop Leo Soriano, Quintin Doromal, Fe Maria Arriola, Isagani Serrano, and NBN-ZTE whistleblower Rodolfo "Jun" Lozada. The petitioners named the Comelec as the lone respondent. (PIA-Bohol) [top]