Saturday, 8 May 2010

Reconfigured PCOS machines pass test in Negros Occidental

By Carla Gomez
Inquirer Visayas

BACOLOD CITY, Philippines—Teachers and watchers of political parties in Bacolod City were jubilant Saturday when the testing of the Precinct Count Optical Scan machines in their precincts turned out a success.

The testing of PCOS machines in almost all areas in Negros Occidental Saturday was also successful, said Provincial Election Supervisor Jessie Suarez.

Bacolod Election Officer Ryan Castro said he only received some minor complaints such as missing plugs for some machines or lack of materials, which were easily resolved.

Teachers and watchers in polling areas in Bacolod City heaved a collective sigh of relief when, after manually tallying test votes on about 10 ballots per precinct, the results matched with the PCOS results.

During the testing of the PCOS machines at the precincts, watchers of all political parties were asked to cast test votes on ballots that were then fed into the machines. After the machine results of all ballots cast were printed, the ballots were removed from the ballot box and the votes were counted manually and compared to the machine results.

Basilisa Kho, chairman of the Board of Election Inspectors of Cluster Precinct 42 at the Mabini Elementary School, said they hoped that, if the machines work as well as they did during the testing on election day, they would have the results out by 8 p.m. and ready for transmission to the City BEI for citywide tally.

In the past manual counts, she said, their work lasted until 6 a.m. the next day.

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