Thursday, May 03, 2007

Cheating Machinery

In a bid to convince the people that the TUTA will get the votes, the administration continues to point to political machinery. With the elections just a few days away, They now say that its going to be 8-3-1 favoring TUTA. This is a big drop from their 12-0 dream which we all know is absurd.

Probably realizing the people will never believe such a sweep, they have adjusted their projection. While the surveys to the run up to the elections point to an opposition win, they now have to float the political machinery factor. This of course is to cover-up the cheating that would take place. The administration has to paint a picture of credibilty to support their claim

Elections are supposed to be free from intervention. Especially from the engineers of cheating. This is not the case in Mindanao where cheating is rampant. Here, the military, the COMELEC officials and even the teachers are in cahoots as alleged by Gov. Al Tillah of the Islamic Society and Atty. Firdausi Abbas, the Sultan of Lanao. It maybe recalled how alleged cheating took place in parts of Mindanao.

Names of AFP officials also were mentioned in the Hello Garci scandal. Tillah and Abbas even mentioned Garcillano during the Korina Today show. They also pointed to the national government as the ones who spearheads cheating. From intimidation to actual vote-buying were mentioned by the two.

Mindanao has three million voters which is more than enough to get the "swing votes".
From swimming voters to flying voters to prepared election returns, these are just some of the cheating they employ. Voter numbers also increase during elections. Former senator Santanina Rasul is glad that NGOs and even foreign observers will be trooping to her province to guard the elections.

Mindanao is highly militarized. It is a land where warlord-ism flourish. These warlords are the only ones who benefit from government concessions and even scraps never reach the people. Some voters never really bother to vote as the cheats have already prepared the ballots. The remoteness of the province and the presence of the military adds to the impunity by which cheating is conducted. Could this be the case too of the recent militarization of depressed areas in Metro Manila?

My two cents, cheating will be rampant in areas with a high military presence. Intimidation will be high. And people will be hard-pressed to express their will. Unless the people assert their right to vote, elections will never be clean. Its time for us to thwart the cheating machinery of those in power. Let's be vigilant and fulfill our role in this coming elections. Let's be the proactive voter.