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PNP, AFP fail to stop Bayan Muna from winning

Furious campaigning by state forces and online trolls against progressive parties failed to stop Bayan Muna (BM) from gaining lost ground in yesterday’s midterm national elections.

BM is at the second spot with about 1.08 million votes as of 8:12 am today in partial and unofficial tallies by the Commission on Elections (Comelec).

BM’s votes represent 4.05% of 93.6% of election results tallied by the Comelec thus far, assuring the 2001 top party list group of at least two seats in the next congress.

“Despite many reports of fraud, the Rodrigo Duterte regime cannot defeat the people’s will,” BM second nominee Ferdinand Gaite told Kodao.

Gaite was referring to partisan election activities by the Philippine National Police (PNP) aimed at discouraging voters from choosing BM and other progressive parties in yesterday’s polls.

Officers of the Manila Police District were caught distributing PNP’s official newsletter “Pulis Serbis Balita” in various polling centers yesterday containing articles maligning BM and Kabataan Party.

Poll watchdog Kontra Daya also received reports of death threats and harassments against volunteers and supporters of the progressive parties in many parts of the country.

“The Duterte administration utilized its entire machinery—time, resources, power, influence as well as the military, police and others—to also push for its rotten candidates and parties for the partylist elections. We are not surprised that the parties Duterte openly endorsed are those charged with graft and corruption,” Gaite said.

Meanwhile, Gabriela Women’s Party and ACT Teachers Party are poised to win seats in the next congress.

Gabriela is currently at 12th spot with 434,319 votes representing 1.63% of party list votes cast.

ACT is at 17th place with 380,760 votes, representing 1.43% of party list votes cast.

Kabataan Party and Anakpawis are in the middle tier of the party list race  at 48th and 62nd places, respectively.

Kabataan has 189,830 votes, representing 0.71% of the votes with Anakpawis has 140,567 votes, representing 0.53 of the votes.

Member organizations of Kabataan Party are set to hold indignation rallies throughout the country this afternoon to protest fraud in yesterday’s polls as well as the delayed posting of results by Comelec’s faulty servers.# (Raymund B. Villanueva)

Vote buying remains rampant, poll watchdog reports

Poll watchdog Kontra Daya said that vote buying remains rampant in today’s elections, a practice that has in fact started as early as January.

The group in its mid-afternoon report said it has received allegations of vote buying in the provinces of La Union, Bataan, Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Camarines Norte, Negros Occidental, Aklan, Leyte, Samar, Cebu, Davao, Agusan del Norte, Zamboanga del Sur.

Amounts reportedly range from P200 to as much as P4,500.

In Metro Manila, Kontra Daya received reports on vote buying in Quezon and Taguig cities.

Volunteers on the ground described the vote buying as “widespread,” “massive,” “brazen,” and “insulting”, Kontra Daya said.

“There were several reports detailing how vote buying is coursed through their respective barangay officials. Others are reportedly ‘helping’ voters find their precincts in exchange of votes,” the watchdog said.

In Moises Padilla town in Negros Occidental, police have reportedly arrested those allegedly involved in vote buying.

Among those confiscated are sample ballots with P1,000 each attached.

As many as 28 suspects have been arrested, a separate report sent to Kontra Daya said.

Moises Padilla is under Comelec control following the murders of of reelectionist Councilor Jolomar Hilario and a relative last March 31.

In Samar, vote buying reportedly began as early as January, Kontra Daya said. # (Raymund B. Villanueva)

Election watchdog accuses Comelec of undermining credibility of polls

Election watchdog Kontra Daya accused the Commission on Elections of failing to address issues that may lead to massive fraud in the May 9 elections.

In a press conference in Quezon City, the group enumerated issues that “pose great danger to the security and accuracy of the counting of…votes.”

“It has opened avenues for cheating and disenfranchisement, and has eroded even further the credibility of the upcoming polls,” Kontra Daya convenor Giovanni Tapang said.

Here is a video of the press conference.

Kontra Daya 2016 starts campaign for credible elections

Convenors and members of the citizens’ election watchdog Kontra Daya trooped to the Commission on Elections last March 7 to press the poll body to hold a clean, peaceful and orderly elections.

When elections in the Philippines have been automated in the 2010 and 2013, Kontra Daya had been instrumental in documenting many cases of fraud using the Precinct Count Optical Scanning machines.

Kontra Daya is again expressing alarm that the new machines will be used to commit fraud as the Comelec is refusing to implement safeguards, such as receipts for voters as well as opening the program source code for scrutiny by other parties.