4,888 voting machines on stand-by on election day

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    CLARK FREEPORT – The Commission on Elections (Comelec) will have 4,888 vote counting machines (VCMs) on stand-by should any of the 92,509 VCMs in voting precincts nationwide fail on election day on May 9.

    Comelec public relations manager Cristalyn Magsino said that unlike in the 2013 elections, all clustered precincts nationwide will have VCMs for the May 9 polls.

    Miguel Eugenio Avila, pre-sales coordinator of Smartmatic, said none of the some 72,000 precinct count optical scanners (PCOS) used in the 2010 and 2013 polls would be used.

    The PCOS machines, which Comelec initially leased and later bought for the last two polls reportedly at the cost of P15 billion, have reportedly remained in a Comelec-designated warehouse.

    Magsino, in a briefing members of the Capampangans in Media, Inc. here, noted a total of 97,517 VCMs were leased for the coming polls.

    Apart from 4,888 standby VCMs, a total of 92,517 units are to be used for local voting and another 120 units for overseas voting.

    “We expect voters’ turnout to be heavier in this elections because of better accessibility for seniors and persons with disability,” Magsino said, amid plans to use malls as voting centers.

    She noted figures indicating there are now 6,936,642 senior citizen voters who are registered with the Comelec.

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