The machines work, all 58 of them!

Written by JVillamil

2010 Election

The gods must be working overtime. Well, at least, within these northern parts of the hot and still heating islands. And we are not talking of only the sweaty weather.

Election Officer III Nelly Valera reports that the on-site testing of the 58 PCOS (Precinct Count Optical Scan) machines and the re-configurated CF (Compact Flash) Cards today, May 9, were all successful. This is good news for a change, for the jittery proponents of full national election automation.

After the testing, the PCOS machines were then sealed to await the opening of the polling place at 7 in the morning of the next day, which is a very few hours from now.

For those who are fearful that the remnants of the old wicked cheating ways shall manage to hold sway over the forces of the good and the hi-tech, be assured. The Board of Election Inspectors (BEI) of every clustered precincts have the watchful watchers, the loyal political leaders, the candidates’ relatives and friends, and no less than the whole of the barangay, mula bata hanggang asal-bata (from child to childish) to stand guard with them over the hard-black plastics, the depository of our votes. What strange icons we have nowadays – to scour our mores, to score our futures.

Only one incident marred the otherwise peaceful preview to election day.

COMELEC prohibits any of the candidates from participating in the distribution of the PCOS machines and election paraphernalia. Mrs. Nona Faye Pacites-Songcuan, assistant to Mrs. Valera, noticed the PCOS of a certain barangay being loaded unto the private vehicle of a retired military officer who is a close relative and most trusted adviser of mayoral candidate Ernesto Go. Songcuan rushed to the Election Officer for advice. The latter immediately instructed Songcuan to order the Go relative to cease and desist. The person did. The PCOS were unloaded.

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