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Comelec sets final testing, sealing of OAV voting machines for March

The Commission on Elections will conduct next month the final testing and sealing of the vote counting machines to be shipped to the 30 Philippine posts overseas where overseas Filipino workers could cast their votes.

Comelec Resolution No. 10051 states that the final testing and sealing (FTS) of the VCMs should be conducted three weeks ahead of the start of the voting period for overseas Filipinos on April 9.

During the testing and sealing, there will be actual casting of votes using 10 FTS-specific ballots, which will then be fed to the VCMs.

The machines should be able to generate eight copies of the results using thermal papers after votes are cast.

A special Board of Election Inspectors (SBEIs) shall also count and verify the accomplished ballots.

Candidates, political parties, and party-list groups will be notified of the details of the FTS, at least three days before it is conducted.

After the FTS, the VCMs will remain sealed until the start of the overseas absentee voting.

The election paraphernalia to be used by OFWs, meanwhile, shall be placed inside ballot boxes.

The voting period for the OAV will be from April 9 (8:00 a.m., host country time) up to May 9 (7:00 p.m., Philippine time).

On Twitter, Comelec commissioner Rowena Guanzon said 9.9 million ballots have been printed as of 10:30 a.m. Sunday.

In accordance with Comelec Minute Resolution No. 15-0798, the VCMs will be shipped to the following Philippine posts:

Agana, Chicago, Honolulu, Los Angeles, New York, Ottawa, San Francisco, Toronto, Vancouver, Washington, London, Madrid, Milan, Rome, Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur, Osaka, Seoul, Singapore, Tokyo, Abu Dhabi, Beirut, Doha, Dubai, Jeddah, Kuwait, Manama, Al Khobar, Riyadh, and Tel Aviv.

A total of 26 Philippine posts will use the postal manual voting system while another 26 will use the personal manual voting system. — Xianne Arcangel/LBG, GMA News