Philippines: Cost of electoral reform in Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao: P850M | Inquirer News

It would cost nearly a billion pesos to nullify the entire list of voters in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao and replace it with a new one, the chair of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) said. The expense, however, was necessary to end decades of electoral fraud in the region, said Comelec Chief Sixto Brillantes, a former election lawyer. Brillantes said it would cost P450 million if Comelec proceeded with regular registration of voters in the ARMM and at least P850 million if Comelec did away with the old registration process and instead nullified the region’s voters’ list and put in place a registration system using modern technology. He said, however, that trashing the existing voters’ list was a necessary first step toward electoral reform in the ARMM. Comelec, he said, would use a process of registration using biometrics, or technology that would keep track of voter identity through fingerprints or other unalterable marks.

Philippines: Comelec wants amendments to election code | Inquirer News

The Commission on Elections is planning to seek amendments to the 26-year-old Omnibus Election Code to attune it with election automation laws, the latest of which was first implemented nationwide last year. Comelec Chairman Sixto Brillantes Jr. said recently that most of the provisions of the OEC had become obsolete after the country adopted its first election automation law, Republic Act No. 8046, which provided for the pilot-testing of a computerized voting system for the 1996 polls in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.

“The voting scheme nowadays is really different. The provisions under the OEC no longer apply. Many [situations governed by the provisions] can no longer happen,” he said. Asked how much of the OEC was no longer applicable or could no longer be enforced, he replied, “At least half.” The Comelec chief said this was the reason the commission would be undertaking an extensive study on how to amend the OEC, officially known as Batas Pambasa 881.

Philippines: Former presidential couple gets subpoenas for poll fraud | Asia News Network

“The process of accountability has formally begun,” Philippine Justice Secretary Leila de Lima on Tuesday told reporters shortly after Department of Justice (DOJ) personnel started serving subpoenas on former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and her husband, Jose Miguel “Mike” Arroyo.

The joint investigating panel of the DOJ and the Commission on Elections (Comelec) has formally summoned the Arroyos and close to 40 others to appear at its first hearing on November 3 into the purported fraud in the 2007 midterm elections in Mindanao. “We’re definitely serious in this undertaking,” De Lima said.