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Monday, May 10, 2010

First Electronic Vote in the Philippines

Election Day. Finally!

Mama was excited to go to the precinct to vote and prodded me to go with her so we could already vote. Told her we should wait for my brother so he can take us by car. Nope she said she could walk to the school where we are to vote. I finally gave in. that was around 9:00 am. We went out of the gate, there were a lot of people outside since the school just beside our home is also a polling center unfortunately that is not where we are to vote. The people told mama that it would be difficult for her since the line was long and it was very HOT…. Geez too hot if you ask me! I told her I’d go ahead and see how it goes before I come back for her and she gave in.

So I went and there were people everywhere. People were giving sample ballots and even fans to all passersby. It shouldn’t be so but it always happen. Someone gave me a fan of one of the party list. I took it. It was so hot I had to fan myself even if I would not be voting for it. There were a lot of people in the school but they have tarpaulins of the school layout with the precincts indicated in the rooms. There are now several precincts in one room. I took hold of the number of our precinct, we noted it earlier in the online site of Comelec. Four of us are all under one precinct. Went there and of course there was long line, I had to take a number so it would be organized and would just have to come back later. Oh well our place is not too far from the precinct, the number being served was in the one hundred. I got numbers for all of us – it was in the two hundred seventy plus. And I went home.

When the other siblings had taken their late breakfast and prepared we went back at around 10:30… mama did not want to wait any longer! The same thing lots of people, mama had difficulty walking but she made it alright. When we got there we asked the number being served it was 230 ahhh a bit longer still but it was okay, then somebody told us that Senior citizens can go straight in and I asked if the companion could go to and they said it was okay. SO while the two siblings waited mama and I went in.

There were a lot of people to assist and point direction. First they asked our number and precinct and we gave them, they got the list, the voters had their thumbprint and picture in them and it was easy to find ours, then we signed and they gave us a paper with the word ballot and we presented it to the person holding the ballots and she gave us a copy. We sat and we shaded the oval box of the candidates, geez I did not realize the letters and the box were small and with the pen it was hard not to go beyond the oval box but we tried our best. It was fast. We then proceeded to the PCOS machine and inserted our ballots. Mama was first and she was excited when the machine said Congratulations (no voice, just on the screen) then inserted mine and it was done. The girl there placed indelible ink on our fingers and we went back to the person holding the voters list and signed and we were off.

Voting in our place has always been easy. I have been voting for a long time and even observed some proceedings and there was never any untoward incident that I have experienced. This is the first time we have voted electronically, I have been hearing on TV of glitches and problems in some area. Good thing we did not have such problem. It was quite nice to finally have the electronic voting implemented, there might be problems this year but for sure in the next years it will be very smooth.

Now, just hope that the counting process is successful and that we get good officials to serve our country. On that… God help us!


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