By Azer Parrocha  May 17, 2019, 8:22 am

RIGHT OF SUFFRAGE. Voters fill up their ballots for the mid-term elections in Precinct No. 109325 at Dela Paz Elementary School, Antipolo City, on Monday (May 13, 2019). (PNA photo by Rico Borja)

MANILA — Malacañang believes that the result of the May 13 midterm elections are “credible” despite glitches experienced by the transparency server and vote counting machines (VCMs).

Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo assured that the Commission on Elections (Comelec) will be investigating the problem encountered by the transparency server, but noted that this would not affect the voting results.

“It doesn’t matter kung ma-delay ito. Kasi kung delay lang, but the same number of votes pa rinanong problema doon (if it gets delayed. Because if it’s just delayed, but has the same number of votes, what’s the problem there)?” Panelo said in a Palace briefing.

As for the glitches in the VCMs, Panelo said there is always the manual counting of votes to serve as a “remedy.”

Panelo, however, said the Palace will back calls for an investigation of the alleged ballot-shading incident in Lanao Del Sur.

“The Comelec should investigate that. That’s their turf, hindi tayo puwedeng makialam diyan sa ngayon (we can’t interfere with that now),” Panelo said.

Panelo was dismayed by an estimated 1.1 million Filipinos over-voting for senatorial candidates during the May 13 mid-term elections.

He said Comelec should educate voters more on voting for only 12 candidates for senator, otherwise their votes will be invalid.

“I think the Comelec should do something about that. Kasi, biruin mo 1.1 million hindi mo mabibilang (Because just think about it, they’re 1.1 million votes that you won’t count),” Panelo said.

Meanwhile, Panelo also suggested the use of modern technology to allow voters to just press a button and immediately get to vote.

Not blind followers

As administration-backed candidates continue to dominate the senatorial race, Panelo assured that they will not become the President’s blind followers.

“Nagkataon lang na malapit sila sa President. It doesn’t mean anything na ibig sabihin eh, sunud-sunuran sila (It’s only a coincidence they’re close to the President. It doesn’t mean anything that he says, they’ll follow),” Panelo said.

Panelo, meanwhile, said that despite having more allies in the Senate, the passage of the President’s priority bills will still depend on the lawmakers.

“Well, that will depend again on the members of Congress. If they feel that they should pass it immediately, then they will,” Panelo said.

“You must remember that these two Houses are deliberative assemblies. So when you say deliberative, it means they will have to discuss, to deliberate the pros and the cons,” he added.

Panelo said he expects lawmakers to pass measures that will benefit Filipinos despite their political affiliations. (PNA)