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The Daily Tribune

(Without Fear or Favor)



World Wildlife Fund for Nature-Philippines

The Philippines Matrix Project

Peoples International Observers Mission report specific fraud and disorder cases in the 2010 Philippine elections

Friday, May 14, 2010

Press conference by the Peoples' International Observers Mission on the conduct of the 2010 elections in the Philippines

Composed of academicians, lawyers, law students, journalists, social workers, union organizers, church workers, the PIOM foreign delegates documented specific cases of fraud and violence in some of the country’s hot spot areas. (Photo by Raymund B. Villanueva / Kodao Productions / bulatlat.com)

An emotional Frances Smith of the California Nevada annual methodist church and my own church in califoriania diverted from her prepared speech to say:

I'm an old woman. I've voted in elections for years. I've served on election boards in my community. What i saw in Payatas was the truly inspirational power of the human spirit of the Filipino people. They eagerly lined up for the 7 am opening of the polls for what they thought, what they had been told, was a planned smooth, orderly process but which became increasingly chaotic as the day dragged on and on and on till 7 pm, and for some, they stayed in schools way after midnight to ensure that the ballots got transferred. If there'is some ever grand design for a smooth, worthy election process, I did not witness it here....

Video Source: http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/6873834#utm_campaign=unknown&utm_source=6873834&utm_medium=social

Hostile territory EDITORIAL 05/14/2010

Hostile territory

Click to enlarge

Sen. Noynoy Aquino, who is leading in the unofficial presidential tally, should rethink his exclusive stance on the presidency as if he, the comebacking civil socialites, and the Liberal Party (LP) would be all that is needed to run the country.

So far, Noynoy, yet to be officially proclaimed president-elect, has shown very poor leadership skills as well as a cluelessness of just what government and its co-equal branches entail. 

He has already picked a fight with the potential leader of the House of Representatives, the ever-scheming Gloria Arroyo, and Gloria’s anointed Supreme Court Chief Justice Renato Corona. That makes him a likely enemy of already one and a half of the other two branches of government.

Noynoy said Wednesday that Gloria will not be allowed to get away with her misdeeds in the past nine years while he warned Corona, indirectly through Simeon Marcelo who seems to be positioning himself for a juicy Cabinet post, that he may be violating the Constitution if he accepts Gloria’s appointment when Chief Justice Reynato Puno retires three days from now.

Even during his candidacy, Noynoy said he will not recognize the Chief Justice appointed by Gloria.
The results of the recent elections show a predominant Nacionalista Party-Nationalist People’s Coalition and Lakas-Kampi-CMD members of the House of Representatives.... MORE  

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100514com1.html

Estrada camp, others warn of massive poll fraud 05/14/2010

Comelec admits errors in PCOS count, transmission of ERs

Estrada camp, others warn of massive poll fraud

Speed there certainly was, in giving out the election returns via the precinct count, but accuracy of the vote count certainly appears to have failed, giving rise to massive electronic poll fraud marking the country’s first automated elections.

The election lawyer of former President Joseph Estrada, George Erwin Garcia, yesterday bared before reporters the information that he would be presenting strong evidence of discrepancies in the electronicaly transmitted poll results of the 2010 elections before the proper forum, which is the congressional canvass board, which will be constituted once Congress convenes as the National Board of Canvassers (NBoC) to canvass the votes for president and vice president.
The camp of Estrada, as well as the camps of three other presidential candidates, Sen. Jamby Madrigal, Nicanor Perlas and JC de los Reyes, also at a press conference yesterday bared that they, too, have evidence of massive automated fraud which they also plan to bare before the congressional body, as well as ask Congress to conduct a manual audit of the votes.
Garcia also said they will be asking Congress not to rely solely on the electronically transmitted results when it convenes as the NboC, scheduled on May 31.
“We will be presenting evidence, documents and people as well as affidavits to prove that there were election irregularities. And this will have to reflect on the credibility of the elections,” Garcia stressed.... MORE  

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100514hed1.html

JPE, Nograles meet on early convening, canvassing rules By Charlie V.Manalo and Aycth S. de la Cruz 05/14/2010

JPE, Nograles meet on early convening, canvassing rules

By Charlie V.Manalo and Aycth S. de la Cruz

Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile and Speaker Prospero Nograles are set to meet today for discussions on the possibility of Congress convening early as a national canvassing body to canvass the votes of the president and vice president and proclaim the winners of the presidential race.

Nograles yesterday bared he is seriously considering the proposal of the Senate President for an early convening of the joint session of Congress, even as he praised the Commission on Elections (Comelec) and Smartmatic Inc. for conducting the first ever nationwide automated elections in the Philippines.

But Nograles said that he may also ask the House special congressional oversight committee on poll automation to immediately conduct a random manual audit of ballots in certain clustered precincts nationwide to dispute public allegations that so many of Smartmatic’s precinct count optical scan (PCOS) machines have been pre-programmed to favor certain candidates.

As originally scheduled, Congress will resume session on May 31.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100514hed3.html

Expect GMA to continue wielding political clout — Malacañang By Aytch S. de la Cruz 05/14/2010

Expect GMA to continue wielding political clout — Malacañang

By Aytch S. de la Cruz

President Arroyo’s chances for the Speakership title now that she has already been proclaimed a representative-elect for the second district of Pampanga will be determined by the composition of members in the 15th Congress, a Malacañang official yesterday said.
Deputy presidential spokesman Ricardo Saludo told reporters in a post-briefing interview that Arroyo’s fate to lead the 15th Congress will be dependent on the political alignments of the would-be members in the lower chamber.
He, however, stressed that people may still expect Arroyo to continue wielding political influence across the country just like her predecessors and even more so since she will be joining the House soon.
“It’s a fact that if people who may not have official positions do wield a fair amount of clout in the political arena or in society. You have former Presidents Corazon “Cory” Aquino, when she was alive, and Fidel Ramos who continue to wield great influence even when they were not holding political or official positions,” Saludo said.....MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100514hed4.html

LP’s claim of Roxas’ 2-M lead improbable — Binay camp By Gerry Baldo

LP’s claim of Roxas’ 2-M lead improbable — Binay camp

By Gerry Baldo

The Liberal Party’s claim that Sen. Manuel Roxas II is now leading by more than two million votes over Pwersa ng Masang Pilipino (PMP) vice presidential bet Makati Mayor Jejomar Binay is misleading as most of those have already been counted by the Commission on Elections (Comelec).

According to Lito Anzures, Binay’s spokes-man, more than 80 percent of the alleged votes that came from Western and Central Visayas have already been tallied and reflected in the count.

“Part of the (the 2.1 million) has already reached the Comelec. If they are claiming otherwise, how come it was not transmitted?” Anzures yesterday stressed.

He said if the results for the vice presidential race are tainted then the results for the presidential race would also be tainted.

Binay’s camp questioned the figures released by the LP even as it said the results should have been already transmitted with the results of the elections in the local positions because these are counted by the PCOS machines simultaneously.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/headlines/20100514hed5.html

Romulo calls for snub of ‘farce’ Myanmar elections 05/14/2010

Romulo calls for snub of ‘farce’ Myanmar elections


Foreign Affairs Secretary Alberto Romulo yesterday said the government should not send poll observers to Myanmar because the upcoming elections in the military-ruled Southeast Asian state is just a “farce.”

The United States and the European Union have aired doubts whether the scheduled elections in Myanmar (formerly known as Burma) would be credible as they continue to urge the junta to engage the opposition and ethnic minorities.

If it would push through, this year’s elections in Myanmar would be the first since 1990. 

Detained democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi’s party won the last polls by a landslide. She, however, was prevented from taking office by the junta government.

“This is my personal opinion. But what are you going to observe (when the elections are) a farce, a game. (The Myanmar government are holding elections) like children are playing games,” Romulo told reporters..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/nation/20100514nat3.html

Comelec eyes to proclaim Senate race winners tomorrow 05/14/2010

Comelec eyes to proclaim Senate race winners tomorrow


The Commission on Elections (Comelec) yesterday said it is looking to proclaim the winning senatorial candidates tomorrow. But Comelec Commissioner Gregorio Larrazabal said the poll body would merely be making a partial proclamation as the other winners have yet to be officially determined.

Larrazabal said if ever the plan pushes through, may be only the top six winners will be proclaimed by the Comelec. “It would all depend on the (decision of the Comelec) en banc,” he said.

Meanwhile, the proclamation of the winning party-list organizations cannot still be known as the winners are determined through the total number of votes cast for the party-list polls.

In yesterday’s partial and official tally, the seven-man en banc panel of the Comelec, which is sitting as the National Board of Canvassers (NBoC), has tallied 60 out of the 274 provincial certificates of canvass, or 21.89 percent of the total.

Based on the tally, still leading was administration re-electionist Sen. Ramon “Bong” Revilla Jr., who garnered 11,053,981 votes so far, followed by another re-electionist, Sen. Jinggoy Estrada, who got 10,631,692 votes so far.... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/nation/20100514nat6.html

Dumb FRONTLINE Ninez Cacho-Olivares 05/14/2010


Ninez Cacho-Olivares
Noynoy Aquino has become more arrogant than ever, which stance really bodes ill for the nation.

Just the other day, he again raised his threat not to recognize the new Chief Justice chosen by Gloria Arroyo, Supreme Court (SC) Senior Associate Justice Renato Corona, and also said that it was “inappropriate” for Gloria to appoint the new CJ, as it is the right of the new president (meaning himself) to appoint a CJ of his choice.
Either Noynoy can’t get it constitutionally right, no matter how many times it has been pounded on his balding head, or he just refuses to abide by constitutional rules, deluded into believing the presidency and its powers are the be-all and end-all.
Just what makes Noynoy think that it is his right, and not Gloria’s, to appoint the next CJ? Who is the sole interpreter and arbiter of the law? The president of the republic or the SC? Who the heck does Noynoy think he is? Hello, he has not even been proclaimed president-elect and he thinks he is higher than the law itself!....MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100514com2.html

Asean vents concerns over Thai crisis focus 05/14/2010

Asean vents concerns over Thai crisis



HANOI — Southeast Asian leaders have raised concerns about regional stability in the wake of Thailand’s political crisis, in what observers say is the latest sign the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) regional bloc is slowly easing its policy of non-interference in the affairs of member states.

Weeks of mass rallies by “Red Shirt” anti-government protesters have paralyzed parts of Bangkok, and erupted into bouts of violence that left 29 persons dead and 1,000 injured, the deadliest civil unrest in two decades.
Vietnam, which currently chairs the Asean, told Thai Foreign Minister Kasit Piromya last week that stability in the kingdom was also in the “common interest” of its neighbors.
As chair Vietnam had to say something about the crisis, but critics might argue it could have gone further, said Pavin Chachavalpongpun, a fellow at the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies in Singapore (ISEAS)....MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100514com3.html

Yet another postscript NO HOLDS BARRED Armida Siguion-Reyna 05/14/2010

Yet another postscript

Armida Siguion-Reyna
Wednesday after the elections, Conrado de Quiros said in his column that he was eating his words, “eating crow, eating humble pie” and that he didn’t mind saying he was wrong about what he had said about automation, the Commission on Elections (Comelec) commissioners, Jose Melo, and Smartmatic, who “did a fantastic job despite an un-fantastic past. I owe them my deepest apologies.”
I’ve admitted in this same space the automated elections system didn’t turn out as badly, but with due respect to Mr. De Quiros, I can’t apologize to anyone remotely connected to the Comelec, not even for this “fantastic job.”
The Comelec will first have to admit to this lola its participation in the electoral fraud of 2004 and lay out in full detail how Virgilio Garcillano got away with giving his phone pal “ang dagdag, ang dagdag” with the connivance of the military, the Ebdanes and Esperons so frequently mentioned throughout the recorded conversations.
Or the gains of the last electoral exercise mean nothing at all.
As I write, election operators are conferring, devising ways and means kung paano paiikutan ang sistema ng botohan na ganito kabilis ang bilangan. Thrown outside the kulambo by the speed and transparency of the computerized poll count, the nefarious will ensure they are back in business in 2013, in order to establish themselves as experts in (digital) vote-stealing in the next presidential polls in 2016.... MORE  

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100514com4.html

Mayor Vice SILVER LINING Dean Ernest Maceda 05/14/2010

Mayor Vice

Dean Ernest Maceda

The Dark Horse. Presumptive Vice President-elect Jejomar Binay was not exactly the dark horse he was touted to be. One look at the mobs that followed every Erap-Binay sortie and one wondered how the surveys were not picking up the hysteria for both candidates. With Mayor Binay on the ticket, Erap’s campaign line of being the candidate of the masses was validated. The poignant story of the humble beginnings of this legal and local giant touched a chord in the hearts of the mahihirap. And Makati? That speaks for itself. Who could question the proposition that the man behind the success of the nation’s crown jewel could just as easily steer the nation to recovery at the right of the President?

The Binay-Roxas race will be just as hotly contested as the Noynoy-Erap matchup come the congressional canvass which, by the way, should be fast tracked to the third week of May (from May 31). Thus far, the elections have been perceived to be successful (though we are all beginning to hear grumblings to the contrary from quarters too many and too diverse to be ignored). The automation has become a true watershed moment. Let’s hope that the fuzzy feelings are not shortlived and that the canvass does not degenerate into a showcase of the old-style politics we would all love to do away with.

Congratulations Vice President Jejomar Binay!... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100514com5.html

Con men rush their victims DIE HARD III Herman Tiu Laurel 05/14/2010

Con men rush their victims

Herman Tiu Laurel
Firstly, the nation’s salute to President Joseph Estrada for entering the political fray to reclaim the country’s political leadership. For Estrada, this sacrifice was his way saying that shirking from his duty and obligation to the nation — especially its impoverished millions — was not an option.

As the poor continue to seek a leadership that will deliver them from the deepening quagmire of poverty, hunger, and hopelessness, one text message I got after the elections, which I now translate to English, succinctly expresses what I believe is their sentiment: “Ka Ments, please tell President Erap that we the poor know that he made the sacrifice and exhausted his resources for us. For me only Marcos, FPJ, Erap are sincere. The rich people don’t want sincere leaders who would not do their bidding. Tnx. — EMY”

Secondly, the Ang Kapatiran statement issued by presidential candidate JC de los Reyes summarizes the doubtful state of the recently-concluded polls: “Inasmuch as I need to honor my word as I conceded the elections for goodwill, we have factual data on hand which unfolded after my having conceded… that indicates conclusive irregularities in the numbers. If I do not speak against these new findings, then my party’s integrity as well as my own will be at risk. Therefore I withdraw my previous statement of conceding the elections. We are putting a formal paper together which shall explain this in detail at the soonest possible time.”

This is in stark contrast to the haughty boasts of the Comelec and the automated election system (AES)’s legislative proponents, Teddy Locsin, Dick Gordon, Chiz Escudero, et al.

Thus, the greatest challenge to President Estrada today is to hold off conceding even beyond the conclusion of the congressional canvass and proclamation (that is, if there is one).

By the insidious and almost unfathomable nature of electronic or computer programs and viruses, any fraud in the just-transpired automated election will take time to surface. Let us be very clear: The ruling powers — higher and more malicious than Gloria Arroyo, and the very ones who are now attempting to foist the “new Aquino” (or the “new Aquinorroyo”) — have gone to even greater lengths to install their new desired puppet.

The rush of the Comelec to declare “euphoria” over the conduct of the polls and over certain bets’ concession speeches; plus the Inquirer’s “Polls stun the nation” and the Philippine Star’s “Automation critics happy to be wrong” by-lines, despite the absence of any credible validation mechanisms, are all suspect for being indecently too hasty.

It is important to remind everyone that even in Europe and the US, electronic or automated voting is already under severe scrutiny and criticism. In the case of Germany, its Supreme Court has already ruled as unconstitutional such a system that disallows physical viewing and tracking. My Tuesday 8 p.m. Global News Network program has several videos from the US of the computerized voting’s flaws, plus the citizens who oppose it.

There are powerful corporations that are lobbying and arm-twisting politicians for the system’s universal use, such that civil libertarians fear it would usher in an era of Orwellian corporate-controlled computerized elections — a universal electronic or e-Garci in the hands of the powers that be.

Why then are the Comelec and the Philippine mainstream media insisting that the AES here is honky-dory? They cannot deny that the following have happened:

Massive disenfranchisement of up to 30 percent (based on conservative estimates); malfunctioning of precinct count optical scan (PCOS) machines, as reported by several candidates; while voting in the old manual system ended earlier, and the recent polls extended voting hours up to 7 p.m., massive disenfranchisement still ensued; the AES’ penalizing the ordinary voter, as GNN manager Harry Tambuatco who waited five hours in the heat said, which caused many voters to just give up voting; the still unverified PCOS rate of accuracy notwithstanding claims of speed as reiterated by computer experts Obet Versola and Mano Alcuaz; and the Comelec and AES advocates’ emphasis on speed over accuracy, among many other issues.

People’s legal advocates should thus sue the Comelec for the following gross violations in its implementation of automated elections law: Negation of the essential nature of the “random manual count” by announcing at noontime of voting day the clustered precincts to be studied (possibly tipping off the cheats to ensure the “cleanliness” of the machines covered); removal of the monitoring screen that would present to the voter his choice before he is to press the “cast” button; removal of the confirmation receipt function; the chaotic testing of the PCOS machines which did not conform to those measures specified in the law; the inexplicable sudden change of tens of thousands of flash cards where the configurations are contained, which raises suspicion that “viruses” were injected and due to the time pressure will be allowed to go un-scrutinized (which also led some to ask if they were really changed or if it was just a stunt to avoid close scrutiny).

Through all the confusion, mainstream media continue to build up the “new Aquino” with such vignettes as Noynoy waiting in line for four hours, as if to further spin their yarn of his “unassuming” demeanor. Well, other than such theatrics or possibly the manifestation of his dorkiness, Noynoy was obviously in no rush — unlike people who had other things to do that day who could no longer wait under the heat.

Still, the biggest question is why the Comelec and mainstream media are in such a rush. It’s been often said that con men consummate their heists in the flurry of fast-paced events with their sleight-of-hand going unnoticed. Well, that’s exactly what they did in Edsa II.

(Tune in to 1098AM, Sulo ng Pilipino, Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, 6 p.m. to 7 p.m.; Global News Network, Destiny Cable Channel 21, Talk News TV, Tuesday, 8 p.m. to 9 p.m. with “Beware the Orwellian Electro-voting Machines;” also visit http://hermantiulaurel.blogspot.com)

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

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20100514com6.html

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