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Impound PCOS machines, flash cards — poll observers 05/31/2010

Monday, May 31, 2010

GROUP SAYS LEGITIMACY OF MAY 10 POLLS IN DOUBT

Impound PCOS machines, flash cards — poll observers


05/31/2010
A poll observer team recommended yesterday the impounding of some 82,000 precinct count optical scan (PCOS) machines and memory and compact flash cards used in the recently held automated elections to allow detailed investigations into the allegations of widespread electronic poll fraud.

Global Filipino Nation (GFN) which deployed observers on election day in municipalities and cities in Pampanga, Quezon and Iloilo also challenged the legitimacy of the May 10 elections, citing five cases that “put to question the authenticity, integrity, confidentiality, veracity and accuracy of the vote counts.”

The impounding of the PCOS machines and the flash cards is necessary in anticipation that these machines will be shipped out immediately after the elections in the pretext that these machines were leased under the Comelec-Smartmatic contract for a whopping P40,000 + each, the group said.

The group, which represents offshore and onshore Filipinos in 30 countries, cited the following reasons for doubts it raised on the legitimacy of the polls: the election results transmitted from the precincts do not have digital signatures of the Board of Election Inspectors (BEI); the number of disenfranchised voters is sufficient to affect greatly the results of the elections; the Automated Election System (AES) was implemented live without the appropriate field testing and law-specified testing in actual elections; the source code review was not completed and initial findings were not addressed; and no audit was done on the AES prior to the elections and only a mandated random manual audit was held that up to now has not been completed.

Aside from its recommendation to impound PCOS machines, the memory and CF cards, and perform forensics on these using the actual ballots, the group also said the Commission on Elections should promptly comply with a Supreme Court directive to make public the documents on Comelec’s preparation and compliance with the requirements of the automated elections law.

It added that an independent, non-partisan qualified party should conduct a full-blown audit of the automated polls system including recommended improvements to include automated registration, purging of voters lists, precinct mapping, and Internet Voting.

In a statement, GFN said that based on industry standards, the digital signature on the precinct election return (ER) is a summary of the ER encrypted using the BEI’s secret key that identifies the BEI personnel and the precinct number from which the ER came; and that the precinct ER was not modified in any way.

It said that under Comelec Bid Bulletin No. 10 issued on April 27, 2009 “the digital signature shall be assigned by the winning bidder to all members of the BEI and the Board of Canvasser (BOC) whether city, municipal, provincial, district. For the National Board of Canvassers (NBOCs), the digital signatures shall be assigned to all members of the Commission and to the Senate President and the House Speaker. The digital signature shall be issued by a certificate authority nominated by the winning bidder and approved by the Comelec.”... MORE    

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100531hed1.html


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