COTABATO CITY, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / June 3, 2011) – An election watchdog urged the Commission on Elections to automate the polls in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao is it will push through this year.
The Citizens Coalition for ARMM Electoral Reform (C-CARE) has earlier joined the mounting calls for the postponement of the elections in the restive region, but said if elections would push through it would be better to automate the polls to prevent fraud or cheating just like in previous elections.
Elections are set on August, but Congress is divided whether to pursue the polls or synchronize it with the midterm elections in 2013. President Benigno Aquino also wanted the ARMM polls postponed and synchronize it with the 2013 elections.
The COMELEC said it may hold manual vote counting in the regional polls instead of the Precinct Count Optical Scan machines used in the May 2010 Presidential elections because of lack of time to prepare for automated polls. (With a report from Romy Elusfa)