MANILA — The Commission on Elections (Comelec) has reset to late this month the preliminary investigation of the complaint filed by the camp of Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Jr. against a poll body personnel and an official of Smartmatic, the service-provider in the May 2016 national and local polls.
During the hearing on Wednesday, the Comelec Law Department approved the appeal of the respondents to reschedule the hearing since they have yet to receive the complaint filed by the lawmaker.
Smartmatic Project Manager Marlon Garcia and Rouie Penalba of the Comelec IT Department were given a 15-day extension, which is non-extendible, to file their respective counter-affidavits.
The preliminary investigation was reset to June 30 at 10:30 a.m.
Abakada Rep. Jonathan Dela Cruz filed complaint after Garcia performed some changes in the script of the transparency server on May 9, just as election results were coming in.
“Ang complaint na ito ay tungkol doon sa paghawak at pagpapalit ni Marlon Garcia ng script ng transparency server, that’s main issue. They had no authority. There was no notice for him to change the script…not only did they change…they interfere with the system…So ‘yun po yung ating complaint dito,” said the Political Adviser of Marcos.
In filing the complaint, Dela Cruz noted it was not about who the winner or the loser but it was about the search for truth, as they believed that the changes conducted had affected the results of the May 9 polls.
“This is not just about the winner or loser in this particular case. Its about the search for truth and we believed that all of these things that happened…had a lot of things to do with the results,” he added.
However, Smartmatic explained that the changes to the script were purely cosmetic and did not affect the results of the election. Ferdinand Patinio/PNA/northboundasia.com