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Failed polls fears up as PCOS malfunction By Marie A. Surbano 05/05/2010

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Smartmatic admits glitches, errors; Testing junked, 76,000 flash cards recalled

Failed polls fears up as PCOS malfunction

By Marie A. Surbano

Six days before the precincts open for the electorate to cast their vote using the new system of automated polls, real fears of a total failure of elections and a no-election scenario surfaced yesterday as precinct count optical scan (PCOS) machines tested virtually nationwide, all failed, with the machines giving out zero votes to some candidates, while some candidates had all the votes.

Machine supplier Smartmatic and Commission on Elections (Comelec) officials also yesterday tried to allay the public’s fear, saying that these machine glitches that were experienced in areas where machines were tested, are easily fixed, adding that it was human error that led to the failure of the machines to correctly read votes for local positions.

Smartmatic Southeast Asia president Cesar Flores admitted its mistake and said the company is taking full responsibility for it, as Smartmatic failed to properly configure compact flash disks of the PCOS machines to properly read the votes for the local races because of a difference in the layouts of the national and local ballots..... MORE  

SourceThe Daily Tribune

  URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100505hed1.html

Race now between Erap, Noynoy—Enrile By Angie M. Rosales 05/05/2010

Race now between Erap, Noynoy—Enrile

By Angie M. Rosales

The race to the presidency is now between former President Joseph Estrada of Pwersa ng Masang Pilipino (PMP) and Liberal Party (LP) standard bearer Sen. Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino. 

This was declared by Senate President Juan Ponce-Enrile yesterday.

“From experience, there has been the shifting of voters in favor of one or the other candidates in this country as we near election day. And it is possible that given the trend of Erap (Estrada) going up, it’s possible that the survey that was presented a few days ago is no longer current at that time. It could be that it has changed in favor of Erap. So we do not know how much or what is the relationship (in terms of votes) between Noynoy and Erap,” Enrile told reporters during an interview yesterday.

Enrile, who is seeking reelection under PMP, made the assessment in light of speculations that Aquino is reportedly set to be endorsed by the influential religious sect Iglesia ni Cristo (INC).

“I don’t know how much of that (INC endorsement) will have an effect on Noynoy’s candidacy but that will not change the position of Erap in relation to (Sen. Manuel) Villar (Jr.). It is now between Noynoy and Erap. I do not know how much Erap had increased his votes at this point because everyday, it changes,” he pointed out.

It will be recalled that the INC also endorsed President Arroyo in the 2004 presidential polls, but she still had to resort to padding her votes to win the presidency... MORE  

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100505hed2.html

Noynoy takes back Cabinet offer to Binay after Roxas rift By Charlie V. Manalo 05/05/2010

Noynoy takes back Cabinet offer to Binay after Roxas rift

By Charlie V. Manalo

Liberal Party (LP) standard-bearer Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino withdrew yesterday his offer of a Cabinet post to vice presidential candidate Makati Mayor Jejomar Binay should he get elected president indicating a widening rift among his supporters, mainly the groups of Sen. Francis Escudero and Aquino’s running mate Sen. Manuel Roxas II.

Escudero is backing Noy-Bi, for Noynoy-Binay, tandem for the presidency and the vice presidency against the official LP presidential slate of Aquino and Roxas. 

“While it is true that I did discuss with Mayor Binay the possibility of his getting the DILG (Department of Interior and Local Government) portfolio when we were engaged in talks to unify the opposition, subsequent events have caused me to revisit this position,” Aquino said in a statement.

“I am no longer confident that the good mayor and I share a common vision and therefore the past offer then is no longer valid,” he added.... MORE 

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100505hed5.html

Nightmare at Comelec square EDITORIAL 05/05/2010

Nightmare at Comelec square

Click to enlarge

It isn’t the supposed plot to disrupt the voting over which the Commission on Elections (Comelec) should worry, but the much too many glitches being encountered in the precinct count optical scan (PCOS) machines in various mock voting tests that should be a major worry for the poll body.

Yet even as all the machine glitches show, there went the poll body, claiming that these glitches are being fixed and not to worry, as there are some 6,000 PCOS machines on standby as replacements.
Considering the fact that there have been many PCOS experiencing various types of glitches, 6,000 spare machines (which are expected to also experience glitches) would hardly be enough, by way of spare machines on election day.
But even if these 6,000 counting machines are to be utilized as replacements.... MORE  

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100505com1.html

Yellows up to something again FRONTLINE Ninez Cacho-Olivares 05/05/2010

Yellows up to something again

Ninez Cacho-Olivares

From all indications, the yellows are really up to something that smells of protest actions a la elite Edsa as they believe they can’t get what they want legitimately.

All too suddenly, Noynoy Aquino’s supporter and lawyer from the FIRM, Gloria Arroyo’s former Ombudsman, Simeon Marcelo, is questioning the appointment of Armed Forces of the Philippines chief of staff before the high court, saying that he took the reins of the AFP on the day the midnight appointments ban took effect.

Incidentally, even as the Judicial Bar and Council (JBC) had already decided on submitting to Gloria the list of four candidates to the Supreme Court (SC) top position, as ordered by the high court, there was Marcelo, along with his organization of lawyers, telling the JBC not to submit the list to Gloria.

Stated differently, that which Marcelo was telling the JBC is that the body should ignore the SC order, for which he really should be either suspended or disbarred as this call is in clear defiance of the high court order.

Strangely enough, it is the same Marcelo, then Gloria’s Ombudsman, who sat on the case against... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100505com2.html

Haiti island unscathed by quake, but tourists stay away FEATURE 05/05/2010

Haiti island unscathed by quake, but tourists stay away



ILE A VACHE — There are no blue-helmeted UN troops patrolling the streets of Ile a Vache, and schools on this picturesque island did not close after the massive earthquake that devastated much of the rest of the country.

Even as the rest of Haiti struggled to clear away debris and dispose of their dead, life after the quake has gone on as much as it did before for the 15,000 inhabitants of this unspoiled paradise.

The tiny island, off the southwest peninsula of Haiti a half-hour by boat from the town of Les Cayes, boasts among its many pleasures a vista of rolling hills and crystalline waters lapping its white-sand beaches.

But despite being spared the physical ravages of the quake, the island and its growing tourist industry also have been hit hard by the disaster.

“No tourists have come since the quake,” said Didier Boulard, a Frenchman who says that not one stone fell out of place as a result of the temblor that leveled entire city blocks in the Haitian capital of Port-au-Prince.... MORE  

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100505com3.html

Erap up, Villar down SILVER LINING Dean Ernest Maceda 05/05/2010

Erap up, Villar down

Dean Ernest Maceda

All surveys we have seen so far now show that President Erap is securely in second place and going up.

On the other hand, Senator Villar is on a clear downtrend going below 20 percent. Our internal survey shows Erap getting 25 percent and closing in on Noynoy who has 35 percent.

More importantly, Villar’s local candidates have accepted reality and have started to defect to the Estrada camp. Speaker Prospero “Boy” Nograles of Davao City is all set to junk Gibo Teodoro and talk has it that he will be supporting President Erap. And certainly, there is no love lost for Noynoy making Erap the only alternative. This is the major shift that will push Erap over Noynoy.

The announcement of Brother Mike Velarde of El Shaddai that he is not endorsing any candidate is another bad piece of news for Manny Villar and assures that at least 70 percent of El Shaddai members will now be free to vote for Erap. Next to Iglesia ni Kristo, the El Shaddai is considered as the other big religious group.

Something definitely wrong. The tests being conducted on PCOS machines all over the country have yielded bad results.... MORE  

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100505com4.html

Apologia DIE HARD III Herman Tiu Laurel 05/05/2010


Herman Tiu Laurel

The Daily Tribune, its editor-in-chief, and its columnist Herman Tiu-Laurel, wish to express their apology to the Manila North Tollways Corp. (MNTC), its then chairman, Oscar M. Lopez, and its then president and chief executive officer, Jose P. de Jesus, over two opinion column articles written by Tiu-Laurel in March 2005.

These articles of Tiu-Laurel published in The Daily Tribune are: “The ‘Velociraptors’ of MNTC” published in the March 11, 2005 issue, and “Lopezes and MNTC: Lying Gangsters” published in the March 19, 2005 issue of the paper.

The Daily Tribune and its editor-in-chief, Ninez Cacho-Olivares, while taking partial responsibility for the publication of Tiu-Laurel’s two opinion columns, believed at that time that Tiu-Laurel would not recklessly disregard the truth in the two articles.

It is the paper and its editor-in-chief’s position that Tiu-Laurel exercised press freedom when he wrote those columns. However, Messrs. Lopez and De Jesus and MNTC are of the mind that we went beyond the law and constitution when we published the articles, which opinion we do not contest.

We apologize to Messrs. Lopez and De Jesus as well as the MNTC for the pain suffered by them arising from these two column articles and for the mis-impressions the Tiu-Laurel columns have publicly generated.

The Daily Tribune and its editor-in-chief note with approval the operational efficiency and the excellent service rendered by MNTC in the NLEX for the last five years, setting an unprecedented standard for all future Philippine toll roads. We admit that these manifestations of efficiency as to corporate responsibilities are additional basis to state that Tiu-Laurel must have erred in both columns with regard to Messrs. Lopez and De Jesus and the MNTC.
This is therefore by way of apology for the mistaken opinions of Tiu-Laurel..... 

(Reprinted with permission from Mr. Herman Tiu-Laurel)

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100505com5.html

Myanmar cyclone victims struggle two years on focus 05/05/2010

Myanmar cyclone victims struggle two years on


THA KYAR HIN O — San Tin says she is haunted by memories of the deadly storm that devastated her Myanmar village two years ago, but fears that she may go thirsty unless more rain falls.

Many survivors of Cyclone “Nargis,” which left 138,000 persons dead or missing and laid waste to swathes of military-ruled Myanmar, are still facing water and food shortages and struggling to rebuild their lives.
“We don’t want any wind and rain as we are afraid,” said San Tin, a 62-year-old widow. “But on the other hand, we need rain because then we don’t have to worry about drinking water,” she told AFP.
“I wish both my old mother and I would die if another cyclone comes. I don’t want to die alone because I have to worry about this old lady,” she added.
Cyclone Nargis unleashed winds of 240 kilometers (150 miles) an hour and storm surges up to four meters (13 feet) high, sweeping away thousands of homes, flooding rice fields with salt water and ravaging schools and hospitals.
.... MORE  

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100505com6.html

Of surveys and trending HE SAYS Aldrin Cardon 05/05/2010 Have you ever been surveyed?

Of surveys and trending

Aldrin Cardon

Have you ever been surveyed?

I was, once. In 1998, I was asked for names I would prefer to vote for local positions. I found their questions leading, as the elections were still some good months away when the survey was made. The questionnaire bore names, some familiar and some I encountered for only the first time. I think the survey gave the more familiar names the edge, thus leading to trending as we are seeing now in the forthcoming polls in May 10.

Surveys, I think, are more indicative of possible results when done on a smaller, very localized basis. The national surveys released recently by reputable firms can only serve as guides, but they would not indicate a general sentiment, especially when the surveys involve only small samplings.

But they do contribute to trending, as I still believe majority of Filipinos vote based only on their perceptions, and not through a deeper look at the character and track record of the candidate they choose.

Surveys could sway opinions, as we’ve seen lately in the campaign of Noynoy Aquino.... MORE  

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100505com7.html

Surveys in, sour grapes out! SHE SAID Malou E. Rosal 05/05/2010

Surveys in, sour grapes out!

Malou E. Rosal

In the realm of fashion, some designers are regarded as key trendsetters. What they create, which are presented to the press months in advance, becomes the basis for all the styles that follow, which eventually end up in our closets.

Media reports key trends they think their readers might want to know, and store buyers place their orders based on what they think their customers will want to buy. 

Public figures — or celebrities and other personalities — also influence an emerging trend when they are spotted wearing some of them. In the end, it is the consumers (based on what they buy), who decide what trends are really “in” and what are “out.” 

In politics, particularly in elections, “trend-setting” is much the same. 

Candidates put themselves out there for inspection. Media talk about them from different angles. Surveys reveal key trends on the candidates’ popularity ratings.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100505com8.html

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