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Comelec Chairman Brillantes Assured the Availability of Source Code

Source CodeCommission on Elections (Comelec) Chairman Sixto Brillantes Jr. assured critics of the availability of the source code and their worries with claims that the absence of the source code would render results of the May 13 Elections null and void.


The Center for People Empowerment in Governance (CenPEG) became concern on the lack of source code that would put doubts on the legality and credibility of election results, after Brillantes earlier admitted that the Comelec failed to acquire a source code for the 2013 midterm elections.


Brillantes earlier reasoned out that Smartmatic International, the polls’ technology provider could not provide the source code without permission from its former partner, Dominion Voting Systems.


Just recently, Brillantes said that though CenPEG is partly correct on the statement that the source would nullify election results, he disproves the absence of source code.


According to him, the source code has been properly reviewed by SLI Global Solutions, which is their third party reviewer, although its certification has not been released by the source code’s owner Dominion Voting Systems.


Brillantes guaranteed that the Technical Evaluation Committee had completely reviewed the source code.


However, Brillantes said that the Comelec could not meet the demands of political parties and other interested groups for a review on the source code since it is not mandatory, thus no law has been violated.


Republic Act 9369 or the Automated Election System (AES) law requires the Comelec to certify that the AES underwent a successful source code review. It also requires to make the source code available and open to any interested political party or groups which may conduct their own review.


The source code, as defined by the law is the human-readable instructions that define what the computer equipment will do.


It contains instructions for counting and canvassing votes, which if manipulated could lead to fraud.


A source code review is the process by which experts counter check its compliance with technical requirements, spot possible flaws, and ensure there is no malicious code that may be used in fraud.

Corabelle is the Bayanihan's Phillippine News Correspondent.