The Commission on Elections (Comelec) has chosen controversial Smartmatic Corp.-Total Information Management Corp. (Smartmatic-TIM) to refurbish its almost 100,000 vote-counting machines (VCMs) for the elections in 2022.
Smartmatic-TIM won the bidding for the P660.741-million Comelec project to refurbish its VMCs after the Comelec’s Special Bids and Awards Committee-Automated Elections Systems disqualified the other bidder, Pivot International Inc.-Power Serve Inc. (PII-PSI).
Comelec documents showed that PII-PSI’s bid was P490 million, but was disqualified because it did not specify the price of the cleaning sheets and the SD cards, among others.
Smartmatic became controversial because there were instances that its VCMs reportedly rejected ballots, had transmission delays, and over-voting during the May 2019 elections. President Rodrigo Duterte also criticized Smartmatic in the past.
The company was also proposing a direct recording electronic voting machine that utilizes a touchscreen for the 2022 elections. It said the touchscreen-based system will can prevent overvoting. SOVEREIGNPH