Thursday, May 31, 2007

Namfrel may not count Lanao votes

Article posted May 31, 2007 - 03:44 PM
The National Movement for Free Election (Namfrel) may set aside the counting of more than 100,000 votes from the 13 towns and municipalities of Lanao del Sur where special elections were held on May 26.

In a press conference Thursday, Carlos Medina, co-convenor of the Legal Network for Truthful Election (Lente), said the copies of the election return (ERs) that they were able to collect in Lanao were all unreadable and had no signatures and thumb marks.

"We have more than 100 ERs but all of them are unreadable, kahit na gamitan mo pa ng lente (magnifying class)," said Medina. �If that was done in purpose, I don�t know. But you know that the ER copy for Namfrel is the 6th copy."

Namfrel chairman Edward Go, who was also present in the press briefing, said that the 13 towns and municipalities in Lanao Sur comprise of about 500 ERs and more than 100,000 votes.

�We will follow our general principles with regards to the ERs. If it is unreadable, don�t bear necessary markings like thumb marks and signatures, and if it is not authentic, then we will not count it," the chairman explained.

Medina added that they were unable to get ERs in five towns of Lanao including Butig, Bayang Sultan, Lumbayabao, Kuwalas and Marugong

Atty. Howard Calleja, legal counsel of the Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (PPCRV), also complained that their group was also denied access to get a copy of the statement of votes.

Namfrel has already counted 83.68 percent of the total 224,748 precincts. - GMANews.TV