Winners known early Tuesday

05/10/2010 - THERE will be no proclamation today. But expect that results will come in fast, especially compared to the past elections, said Commission on Elections (Comelec) spokesperson James Jimenez.

“For local candidates, that (same-day proclamation) might not be possible. They may be proclaimed very, very early the following day, around 2 to 3 a.m.,” said Jimenez.

He explained, though, that the process will be continuous.

Before, when the votes were counted manually, the Board of Election Inspectors often had to wait until 6 a.m. the day after the elections before they could report anything. It usually took them until early morning to finish the precinct-level count.

Polling places open from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. But Jimenez said these are expected to close by 7 or 8 p.m. to accommodate those who are still in line and within 30 meters of the precinct by 6 p.m.

After the polls close, transmission won’t start right away, because there are still “attendance ceremonies.”

This is when all those who will get copies of the election returns will be convened. Among them are the watchers of the dominant majority party, watchers of the dominant minority party and the citizens’ arm.

“These are long documents that take some time to print,” explained Jimenez. The recipients have to sign receipts for their copies of the returns.

Transmission may start by 8 p.m. But Jimenez gave allowances and admitted it may take some time.

He estimated it will take between six and 12 hours to complete the transmission from all precincts to the municipal canvassing centers.

Around the same time, results are also expected to be reported to the Comelec website.

As a best-case scenario, municipal winners may be proclaimed by 2 a.m. (Sun Star)

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