Winners all but the proclamation

the-agora1

So the elections are over and Mayor Rodrigo Duterte of Davao is flying high and may be hours away to clinching the Presidency. With 93.23% of the votes cast last Monday, Mayor Duterte has taken a commanding lead of 6,153,088 votes more than Mar Roxasas of 8:40 last night. Even if Mar Roxas gets the remaining uncanvassed votes of more than 3 million granting an 81% voters turn out as announced by the Comelec, there is no way Roxas can win.

As the figures are now showing the poll surveys have been quite accurate in predicting the results of the actual voting. This is true with the poll results on the Vice Presidential candidates which showed a statistically tied, if not neck and neck between Congresswoman Leni Robredo and Senator Bongbong Marcos. With a little more than 6% more of the votes unreported the advantage could still sway any which way for or against Leni and Bongbong.

Given the unofficial election results both in the national and local levels, it should be clear now who are being catapulted to power and authority in the next three years, for local officials, and six years for the President and Vice President.

On the local level, while the Provincial Board of Canvassers have not yet proclaimed the winners, and with 96.31% of the votes cast being accounted for, Gov. Edgar M. Chatto is a runaway winner over his closest rival, Mayor May Imboy with a margin of 106,531 vote difference as of 8:40 last night. The Vice Gubernatorial post is still hotly contested by Board Member Dioning Balite (272,659 votes) and Vice Governor Conching Lim (252,388 votes).

As to our three congreressmen, all three re-electionists are run-away winners and are only awaiting their proclamation.

As to the Board Members, six new faces will most likely be proclaimed. They are Ricky Masamayor of the 1st District, Rey Niño Boniel and Agapito Avenido of the 2nd District, and Alexie Tutor, Jade Bautista, and Victor Balite of the 3rd District. Re-electionists Benjie Arcamo and Abeleon Damalerio of the 1st District, Tomas Abapo of the 2nd District, and Elpidio Jala of the 3rd District have also successfully won their bids unless the remaining 113,765 votes that have not been reported yet could still change the number of votes for each of them as to push them down to the losing number of votes.

As to the conduct of the election, the PNP may have noted it to be the most peaceful and orderly election so far, we still noted some lapses on the part of Comelec that have disenfranchise some voters despite the assurances by the Comelec that they were ready with any contingencies.

In one precinct in Quezon City, voting which was supposed to have started at 6:00 in the morning could not be started even past 11:00 o’clock because the vote counting machine (VCM) wouldn’t function. In some areas, the voting precincts run out of ballots. And in one instance a VCM was reported hidden in a hotel room although this was later found to be an erroneous report. How could this happen? The convenient answer is “Only in the Philippines.” But why should we be satisfied with such answers? In accepting this type of answer whenever something goes wrong, we perpetuate the darkest hour of this country. And that what brought the overwhelming vote for Mayor Duterte who promised the drastic change that this country needs.

Again as of this writing we have not heard of serious untoward incidents in Bohol. We thank God and our law enforcers for doing their best to keep the peace and order on Election Day. There are however observations that I made on the conduct of elections particularly in my voting precinct in Brgy. Tip-Tip, Tagbilaran City that may also be true in other precincts.

Here they are: There was no more secrecy of the ballot as voters were allowed to sit very close to each other and compare notes on who they were voting for. And contrary to what the Comelec said that only the voter would see whether what he or she voted for was recorded by the VCM through the voter’s receipt, the BEI and those near the VCM would actually know which candidate for President the voter has voted for. As soon as the ballot was fed to the VCM and the BEI presses for the receipt the name of the President that I voted for was flashed on the screen of the VCM. This may be nothing compared to the disenfranchisement of voters in other places but when we do away the values that we hold dear especially as far as the exercise of our democratic rights is concerned then that is the beginning of the deterioration of that democratic value.

Here is another one on election campaigning and political ads. The election campaign for this 2016 election was only up to Saturday, May 7th. By Sunday, May 8th, all active campaigning including publication of political ads were already prohibited. Yet a local weekly newspaper still carried a political ad although the page of the ad was cleverly dated “Saturday, May 7, 2016.” The other side of the page however was dated Sunday, May 8, 2016. How could that be possible when the newspaper comes out only on Sundays and not on Saturdays? Let’s see what Comelec will do with this mockery of our laws.

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