Enter: LENTE

16 05 2007

The canvassing of polls has begun and so has the work of the Legal Network for Truthful Elections (LENTE). Its nationwide network of lawyers, paralegals and law students are now monitoring canvassing at the municipal and city levels. Other concerned citizens are also contacting the LENTE hotline numbers when anomalies are spotted. Below is a summary of issues that LENTE had tackled for Day 1 of the canvassing.

Election Officer Ruben Roluto refused to give the Election Returns (ER) to NAMFREL and the dominant majority and minority parties. According to Roluto, the ERs will be distributed at the municipal canvass instead. The LENTE volunteer assigned in that area informed Roluto of section 53 COMELEC Resolution 7815 on the right of the accredited citizens’ arm, dominant majority and minority parties to be furnished at the polling place copies of the ERs.

A concerned citizen called the LENTE hotline to report massive ballot switching in precinct number 03-A, Barangay 2, Mamburao, Occidental Mindoro. The LENTE secretariat connected the sender to LENTE lawyers assigned to the area to look into the matter.

A DepEd official reported that there was a COMELEC directive sent to all the BEIs in Ilocos stating that the tally should automatically be for two (2) votes
every time a particular candidate’s name is read . LENTE is looking into the matter and will take appropriate legal action.

A caller reported that Echiverri’s watchers have the PPCRV IDs with Echiverri’s name written on it instead of theirs. When the caller asked the teachers to confiscate the said ID and disqualify the watchers, the teachers refused. A LENTE lawyer is currently looking into the matter.

Barangay officials and Kagawads in the polling precinct at the Sacred Hearts parish in Dasmariňas, Cavite are loitering inside the precincts during the counting of the votes. The caller was advised by LENTE to report to the BEI of the respective precinct, and told to ask help from the police if necessary.

A concerned citizen reported that Election Returns were padlocked inside their respective ballot boxes. He/she asked if a case could be filed against the election officer concerned. The complaint was referred by LENTE to COMELEC National.

There was a report of double canvassing of election returns in San Joaquin. The LENTE volunteer was informed by the national secretariat to insist on the canvassing of ERs |in turns| as they are received by the Board of Canvassers.

A LENTE volunteer reported that the ER’s are being tampered with. The volunteer was advised to report the incident to COMELEC and to take note of the places where such incident occurred and, if possible, the persons involved. Afterwards, the sender further reported that three ballot boxes were directed to the incumbent mayor’s home before reaching the municipal hall.




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