Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Christian Monsod thumbs down Biometrics

I can't remember when Christian Monsod was the Comelec Chairman, honestly. Was this the time when Ramos was elected with Miriam Defensor Santiago howling to high heavens that she was cheated? Where was he when the Senate was investigating Hello Garci?
A news article in the Philippine Daily Inquirer quoted him as saying that Biometrics will not solve the problem of multiple registration or multiple voting. He says that he prefers the use of a higher concentration of indelible ink. Besides, he says, biometrics is too expensive at the cost of P 2 Billion.
Here's part of the article:

MANILA, Philippines—A former chairman of the Commission on Elections said
he does not support the poll body’s plan of mandatory biometrics registration to
purge the voters' list of multiple registrants.

“Multiple registration is not the problem in our elections, the problem is multiple voting,” said former poll chief and election lawyer Christian Monsod.

Multiple registration is “a minor problem on a national scale and a non-existent problem in some areas.” Voters with multiple registration comprise only one percent of the total number of registered voters according to the Comelec, said Monsod.

Multiple registration is a specific issue in areas such as the Autonomous Region of
Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) and must not be translated as a “nationwide problem,” he added. Monsod stressed that the problem in ARMM is rooted in feudalism and thus, can be solved by disarming warlords.

Monsod cited implementing mandatory biometrics registration also requires a “huge” amount of P2 billion, which he said could be used to address important issues in preparation for the 2010 polls. He added it causes “undue burden” for Comelec field staff who have a lot of duties, especially during the time of registration.

What this looks like to me is that Monsod has entered the league of Automated Election oppositors and we have found oppositors of every kind delaying Automated Elections every step of the way. I hope he doesn't join the league of Blackhearted Benjamine Abalos, Christian pa naman ang pangalan niya.
Indelible ink, as it was used in the last 3 elections, have proven to be ineffective in curbing multiple voting (flying voters).
Biometrics, which uses a thumb mark reading machine and similar devices, will be a much better alternative to locking out people who have been contracted to vote more than once.
It is a vital part of the Automated Election system and without it, the automated polls may be impaired.
If the government can spend P11 Billion for automated elections, what's another P2 Billion for biometrics?
People, don't let them steal the coming elections from us AGAIN!
Pressure Malacanang and Comelec to go for automated elections with biometrics!

1 comment:

Joseph Vizcarra said...

If Monsod is telling the truth, then it only means that the problem is deeper than you surmise... and probably Monsod is part of the problem.

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