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Binay warns of high-tech cheating in 2016 elections

Vice President Jejomar C. Binay has issued a warning on possible high-tech cheating to favor certain candidates in the 2016 presidential elections.

“Disturbing reports have reached us about the possible high-tech tampering to favor certain candidates, especially for high offices in 2016,” Binay said during the Joint Convention of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) Western and Eastern Visayas in Iloilo.

“If this is true, such an act will be an assault on the people’s sovereign power to confer their mandate on the leaders of their choosing,” he said.

The Vice President also reiterated the warning before Rotary Governors in Manila.

At the same time, he urged the IBP and the Rotary Club to take active roles in ensuring clean and honest elections and fighting electronic fraud in the 2016 polls.

“As early as now, the seeds of advocacy for fair and honest elections in 2016 must be sown and nurtured in order to defend our people’s sovereign will.  I hope the IBP will pick up the gauntlet and be among the vigilant guardians of a clean electoral process less than two years hence,” he said

Binay also lauded the IBP for their efforts in “taking to task those who flout the Constitution” in the handling of government funds.

“With your filing of a petition before the Supreme Court assailing the constitutionality of the so-called ‘Disbursement Acceleration Program’, or DAP, the IBP has registered its strong position to be on the side of impartial accountability and genuine reform in governance,” he said.

“Hopefully, our Supreme Court will soon rule on your petition and find merit in the same for the sake of a truly holistic resolution of the pork barrel scam,” he added.

The Vice President, who is also a lawyer, urged the IBP to lead in the restoration of order and national discipline in the country.

He said prominent citizens and community leaders, as well as civic and sectoral organizations, have joined to form a movement for national discipline called Kilos Kaayusan to be launched in August.

“As professional advocates sworn to defend the Constitution and uphold the laws of the land at all times, we lawyers are in the commanding position to spearhead a dynamic movement to restore kaayusan in our country and persuade our people to observe discipline in their daily lives.  For the sake of the nation, this I urge you to consider,” he said.

The lack of order and discipline, the Vice President said, is the root cause of corruption.

“Official corruption finds its roots in the weakness of patriotic commitment and lack of discipline in our bureaucracy.  Think about it: Will this ‘pork barrel scam’ materialize if there was strict, proper, and professional handling of public funds by the Budget Department and the implementing agencies?” Binay said.

“The system is so weak, disorderly, and prone to manipulation that a scheming street-smart person from Basilan has been able to conspire with the bureaucracy and fleece the people of their money,” he added.

Meanwhile, during the Joint Induction Ceremonies of the Philippine College of Rotary Governors and the Philippine Rotary Magazine Foundation, Inc., Binay urged Rotarians to act and do their parts in renewing “our sense of national discipline.”