Sunday, April 29, 2007

Ways to cheat during elections

I would say it is unfortunate that the Filipino ingenuity is displayed in the bad light during election time.
Filipinos have developed so many dirty tactics during the elections.
Much has been said about "dagdag bawas", a method of election cheating where one candidate is given additional votes at the expense of another whose votes are shaved.
This was first uncovered by Senator Nene Pimentel when he ran during the 1995 elections.
He became a victim of this dagdag bawas method of election cheating.
I will discuss the other deceitful methods which are contrived during elections.
There is a method called "First Count, Last Count"
This scheme is employed when ther are multiple positions up for election, like, senatorial positions, city council, and to a lesser extent, provincial board positions.
In the "First Count Last Count" method, the persons involved here are those election inspectors in precinct level, specifically the one who reads the ballots.
Lets take as an example the senatorial counting in the precint level.
The ballot reader will first read out loud candidate "A".
Then he or che proceeds to read the rest.
There are only twelve names to be read.
But, if the watchers are not meticulous, the ballot reader will read thirteen, instead of only twelve names.
He will say out loud again, candidate "A's" name even if it is not actually written in the ballot.
So in one ballot, the name of candidate "A" is read twice, the first count, and the last (13th) count.
This can also be applied in the list of city or municipal councilors where there are ten names to be read.
The unscrupulous reader will read a total of eleven names per ballot instead of only ten.
That is the "First Count Last Count" scheme.
To prevent this, election watchers should be vigilant and told to make sure only the correct number of names should be read out per ballot.

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