With Smartmatic about to bag the Philippine's Poll Computerization Project, Filipinos can now say goodbye to Genuine Democracy and say hello to a new era of "farcical rule thru high tech theft"!
While I welcome the idea of computerizing Philippine elections, I disdain the fact that the poll project is being undertaken by the graft ridden and scandal laden Arroyo administration, through a poll body that is made up mostly of Arroyo appointees. Allegations of Arroyo's rigging of the 2004 presidential elections with the help of her 'midnight appointee' Garcillano to the poll body prior to the elections is still fresh in everybody's mind. Arroyo's unsuccessful attempts to perpetrate herself in power via legislated constitutional change as spawned by her congressional allies is leaving her no choice but to seek other means to ensure it will be her anointed stooge who will win the 2010 presidential elections. Why? Why else but to escape possible inquiry and prosecution for the many allegations of graft and corruption perpetrated during the 10 years she was in power!
The unfolding Philippine political scenario is unprecedented and must be exposed to the fullest as a 'cloak and dagger' like attempt to undermine the will of its citizens! Let us not be blinded by propaganda and open our eyes to real facts and issues.
It must be remembered that Smartmatic was the same company that won and supplied the Precinct Count Optical Machines used in last year's ARMM elections where the incumbent Arroyo ally won hands down. Despite numerous allegations of cheating and media accounts of fraud, no formal congressional inquiry was ever conducted by the Arroyo-ally-dominated congress. To me, this was a precursor to a bigger plot about to unfold in 2010.
The about-to-be-concluded bidding and selection process for the poll computerization project is questionable
in many ways. It appears that the poll body is bending its rules to accommodate and favor Smartmatic. For one, it placed a blind eye to the fact that Smartmatic will be subcontracting the manufacture of the units to Jarltech of Taiwan which Smartmatic conveniently claims as its manufacturing arm in its website. However, as per records submitted to the poll body, Smartmatic owns only 10% of Jarltech Taiwan. (There is no report whether Smartmatic's claim of ownership of Jarltech was even verified by the poll body.) On the other hand, Jarltech Taiwan's website does even make mention of Smartmatic at all and neither does it have voting machines among its manufactured products much less the SAES 1800 machine which Smartmatic has proposed for the poll computerization project. It appears that we will be using a voting machine that will be manufactured for the first time by Jarltech using a software by Dominion Voting System of Canada! (Again, Smartmatic is claiming to have proprietary rights on the software?!)
To put it simply, the Philippines is putting the biggest and most expensive IT project in its history into the hands of a company who has no manufacturing facility of its own, using a software not its own! Simply put, the Philippine's Poll Officials are fast tracking the poll computerization project at the sacrifice of the country's future! Simply put, the Philippine Poll Officials are elevating electoral fraud to a higher, technologically advanced level which is easier to perpetrate and harder to detect. Good luck, my country men!