Filipino Bishops Call for "Truth Commission" on Election

Believe Independent Probe is Necessary to Investigate Irregularities

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Catholic bishops support calls for the creation of a “truth commission” to investigate reported irregularities in the recently concluded automated polls.

At least three ranking church leaders believed than an independent probe is necessary to let the truth about the glitches in the last elections come out.

Jaro Archbishop Angel Lagdameo, Bishops Honesto Ongtioco of Cubao and Jose Oliveros of Malolos made the call Friday despite the statement by the Commission on Elections that there was no fraud.

“I am in favor of a truth commission to investigate recent poll irregularities in order that justice may be achieved, honesty promoted,” Lagdameo said.

Lagdameo is a former president of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP).

According to Oliveros, the ‘uniformity’ of election results in Bulacan province to that of the national result in favor of the administration senatorial bets.

“What I’m baffled at is the uniformity of the transmission of the PCOS (precinct count optical scan) machines 70-30 in favor of the administration. Here in Bulacan, it’s almost the same as the national report. It’s almost a statistical improbability,” he said.

“The irregularities must be addressed. An independent body different from the Comelec would have more credibility,” added Oliveros.

Aside from the technical glitches, other concerns raised after the May 13 polls was the slow transmission of election results.

“I think it would be good to have one truth commission to investigate this issue to maintain the credibility and integrity of the electoral process,” Ongtioco said.

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