The voter registration and revalidation project will have all of the nearly 40 million voters troop to the Comelec field offices to have their digital photograph and biometric specimen.
The electronic transmission of results will be synchronized with ballot counting machines to enable the Comelec to come up with the national tally of results in about three days from the closing of polling precincts.
The legal basis is Republic Act 8436 or better known as the Election Modernization Law, which was enacted by Congress in 1997. The law provides for the automation of the counting and canvassing of votes in the coming 2004 presidential, national and local elections.
Benefits/Advantages of Automation
By automation, machines rather than human hands will be utilized in the counting and transmission of results.
The system would reduce opportunities for cheating because of less human intervention and will safeguard the credibility of elections as a democratic exercise.
In the automated system, the names of the candidates are pre-printed on a two-page ballot, one for the presidential and national candidates including party-list, and the other for local candidates.
Voters need only to shade the space beside the name of the candidate instead of the previous practice of writing out the names of their choices. As it does away with manual counting at the precinct level, the ballot boxes will be transported directly from the precincts to the municipal or city counting centers.
In the presence of election officers and representatives of political parties and citizen’s arm groups, a machine will count the ballot by precinct. It then prints a certificate of election returns showing the election results on the municipal level, as it saves the results on compact discs.
The city and municipal results are then transported to the provincial counting machine which consolidates all other municipal and city reports, after which they are transported to the national capital region for the national tally.
With this process, the proclamation of winning candidates will be faster.