Twitter Calls to Protect Ballots As Issues With VCMs Arise

Keep your ballots close.

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PHOTO BY twitter / robi domingo ILLUSTRATION War Espejo

(SPOT.ph) Voting is underway for the game-changing 2022 elections. The public was greeted early on Monday, May 9, with long lines and issues surrounding vote-counting machines. "VCMs" is one of the top trends on Twitter with folks understandably worried about their votes. If you're wondering what to do, note that the Commission on Elections has prepped for situations like this—essentially, there are two options: to pass on feeding your ballot into the machine yourself or to simply wait until the machine is fixed or replaced.

According to the poll body's contingency measures in Resolution No. 10759, voters have two choices should their precinct's vote-counting machines (VCMs) malfunction. "To proceed in casting their votes by shading their ballots with waiver of their right to be issued a voter’s receipt," or "to wait for the VCM malfunction to be resolved or the replacement VCM to arrive."

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In the first option, your ballot will be placed along with others to be "batch-fed" into a machine later at the end of the day and in the second, you have the option to wait until the matter is resolved and you can feed your ballot into the machine yourself. 

"Mga kababayan hindi po ito first time," noted Commission on Elections (COMELEC) acting spokesperson Rex Laudiangco in a press conference before voting started. "Wala naman po tayong nabalitaan na aberya doon sa batch-feeding. Kung talaga pong may aberya dyan, doon palang sa protest case na mayroon yan, mayroon na dapat declaration ang Supreme Court," he told ABS-CBN's J. Villaruel

Laudiangco explained that with the batch-feeding process, "may watchers, may accredited citizen's arm, at sila po kung gusto nila bumalik sila; 'wag na lang po pumasok sa [precinct], doon na lang po sila sa bintana." Folks at the precincts should be willing to show the process to voters.

"Bantayan po ninyo 'yong inyong balota," reminded Laudiangco.

VCM issues alight on Twitter on voting day

Meanwhile, folks have taken to the Twitterverse to share news from their precincts. From voters posting what's happening on the ground to people calling to protect your ballots, and even celebrities and, of course, former poll body reps, check out what's happening on this historic voting day. 

Note that you can also reach out to COMELEC via their voter care hotlines.

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