DAGUPAN CITY — About 90 percent of the Vote Counting Machines (VCMs) needed in 1,500 clustered precincts in 48 towns and cities of Pangasinan have already arrived.
Provincial Elections Supervisor Joel Gines, speaking during the Kapisanan ng mga Brodkasters sa Pilipinas (KBP) forum here on Thursday, said the VCMs are temporarily deposited at warehouses being rented by the Comelec in Urdaneta, Dagupan and Alaminos cities, which he calls “Comelec hubs.”
He expects the completion of the delivery of the remaining 10 percent of the VCMs by May 3.
The VCMs are being hauled by 16-wheeler trucks from the Smartmatic warehouse in Laguna to all points of Luzon.
He admitted that no ballots have arrived yet but expects these to be delivered next week.
Dagupan City Elections Officer Nathaniel Saiden said all the VCMs will undergo final testing and sealing on May 6. He called on the public to find time to witness this activity, which will be done to find out if the machines are really operational.
Meanwhile, Superintendent Ferdinand de Asis, spokesperson of the Pangasinan Police Provincial Office, said that from the time the trucks carrying the VCMs leave the Smartmatic warehouse in Laguna, it is escorted by a mobile police team and by any police unit that they pass on to their final destination.
He said there are at present 2,000 policemen and officers in Pangasinan but will be beefed up by another 400 from the regional as well as national police offices, plus additional personnel from the Armed Forces of the Philippines prior to and during the day of the election.
De Asis said they are also counting on their force multipliers to help the police on other aspects of their work like on traffic control. PNA/northboundasia.com