2010 poll automation key electoral reform – VP Binay

The automation of the 2010 national elections was a key factor in restoring the people’s faith in the country’s election system, Vice President said Wednesday during the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Community of Practice Meeting in Electoral Cycle Support in Asia.

The Vice President was the keynote speaker of the event, held at the Hyatt Hotel and Casino in Manila.

“Both [President Benigno Aquino III] and I ascended to power on the wings of a major electoral reform – the automation of the 2010 presidential elections,” Binay said.

“For decades, the delay in the proclamation of winning candidates have caused not only anxiety and distress both on the local and national levels, it has also provided opportunities for election manipulators to tamper with election results,” he added.

The Vice President said that the initial fears about the accuracy and the liability of the automated elections have been dispelled, with the country welcoming and accepting the results of the 2010 elections.

In his keynote address, Binay also noted the increasing role of women in Philippine politics.

“It is no exaggeration to say that the feminization of Philippine politics is a reality that should be welcomed and encouraged,” he said.

“Greater empowerment for women and the improvement of their social, economic and political status is essential not only in achieving transparent and accountable government but also in achieving sustainable development,” he added.

Binay said that female local executives face the same problems and challenges that all local executives face, yet they are able to bring sectors in the community together faster.

The Vice President further said that state financing for political candidates was another key to electoral reform.

“I strongly favor state financing for political candidates, a system that is practiced in many parts of the world,” he said.

“State subsidy will greatly reduce the dependence of a national candidate on campaign donations, and by reducing dependence we greatly minimize opportunity for campaign donors to exact certain privileges and payment for their contributions,” he added.#