The Comelec meaning of “promptly”

The law (RA 9369) is crystal clear.  Once an automated “system” has been chosen, the Comelec is duty bound to “promptly” make the source code available to the public (RA 8436, Sec. 14, as amended). There is no discretion given to Comelec, as the duty is clearly ministerial, controllable by Mandamus.

The precise wording of said Sec. 14 is as follows:

SEC. 12. Section 10 of Republic Act No. 8436 is hereby amended to read as follows:
‘SEC.14. xxx Once an AES technology is selected for implementation, the Commission shall promptly make the source code of that technology available and open to any interested political party or groups which may conduct their own review thereof.’
SEC. 12. Section 10 of Republic Act No. 8436 is hereby amended to read as follows:
‘SEC.14. xxx Once an AES technology is selected for implementation, the Commission shall promptly make the source code of that technology available and open to any interested political party or groups which may conduct their own review thereof.'”

And yet, a Comelec official reportedly said that  “guidelines” on the source code review “are yet to be drafted.” In effect, absent such guidelines, the code would not be made available.

Thus, “promptly” could mean  “when I want to give it to you.”  Or, it could mean “I can’t give it to you because the code is proprietary.”

If it is the first, that would be oppression.  If it is the second, a private agreement is being held to nullify RA 9369, which is legally untenable.  It is well settled that contracts are subject to law, and not the other way around.

See the Daily Tribune report.

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4 thoughts on “The Comelec meaning of “promptly”

  1. Wish it was as crystal clear as you see it or is it the way you see, is the way you want to see it? I think you have taken a very narrow and partisan view of the law as it is written to your own liking. Before you even try and define the word “promptly”, you have to try and define the phrase that precedes it, “Once an AES technology is selected for implementation”. Thus, the AES technology selected for implementation, could mean after the customization and after all the data (i.e. names of candidates, bar codes in paper ballots, etc.) are incorporated in the final source code as it will be vital in determining the actual performance of the application program on the actual date of operation which is May 10, 2010. And when is this? Comelec says this will be sometime in early February. And only then will the word promptly apply.

    Trouble with partisan guys like you is you try and twist things to your own position. I say partisan because from your postings, it is very clear that you are (1) anti-automation (2) anti-Comelec (3) Anti-Smartmatic and (4) pro-OES/Harry Roque/Gus Lagman. Do you have a relative that represents one of the loser bidders, too? Hmmmm!

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    1. Cute but no cigar.. Let’s see. Where is the source code? Where are the implementing rules of the random manual audit? Maybe Papa H will buy you a cuppa in some forgotten bar in Havana.. Make sure it’s a well lighted place though.

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      1. Let me answer you since you don’t answer my questions. The final source code is awaiting data from Comelec before Smartmatic can finalized customization. Instead of an IRR there will be a supplement to the General Instructions (GI) pertaining to the procedures of the random manual audit.

        So again, please answer this question. Are you related to a certain Keshab Roncesvalles, representative of Avante Technologies, one of the losing bidders? If you are, then I know where your bias comes from.

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