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Comelec asked to set date for source code review

Senator Chiz Escudero asked the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to set a definite date for the review of the precinct count optical scan (PCOS) machines source code, otherwise it becomes "a major source of uncertainty for the May 13 elections". "The source code for the 80,000 PCOS machines must be opened for checking by political parties and technology experts which is required under the Automated Polls Law," Escudero said in a statement. Reacting to Comelec Chair Sixto Brillantes Jr.'s pronouncement that the poll chief is 95 percent certain of obtaining the source code, the lawmaker said "it does not offer much consolation to those seeking to review the code this close to the elections date". Brillantes had explained that a court dispute in Delaware between Dominion and PCOS supplier Smartmatic had resulted in the delay of the release of the source code. The Comelec had fixed the review of the code for the consolidation and canvassing system (CCS) next week but not the PCOS source code; with Brillantes merely saying that a "big press conference" will be held to announce when the review will be held. The Automated Poll Law provided that the source code should be reviewed by independent parties three months prior to the elections. Escudero said that while he has full confidence in the Comelec to hold credible elections, an unverified source code can be a point of protest particularly among losing candidates that may cause major post-election problems.
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