The Commission on Elections (Comelec) on Monday opposed proposals to have ballots downloadable over the Internet for Filipinos abroad who will cast their votes as overseas absentee voters.
Comelec Commissioner Armando Velasco said ballot secrecy might be compromised if downloadable ballots are included in amendments proposed for Republic Act 9189 or the Overseas Absentee Voting Act of 2003.
“There is a violation of the sanctity of the ballot and questions on security,” he said in a joint hearing by the House committee on suffrage end electoral reforms and the House committee on foreign affairs Monday morning.
The two committees are in the process of consolidating four House bills seeking to change provisions of RA 9189 to attract more Filipinos abroad to vote in national elections.
Questions the validity of ballots downloadable over the Internet may arise, Velasco said, adding that ballot secrecy will be compromised if election officers in consular offices will have to open the envelope with downloaded ballots in the process of counterchecking with the registration form as a way of ensuring their validity.