CEC assures smooth, fair elections

Commonwealth Election Commission executive director Julita A. Villagomez assured yesterday that there will be a smooth and fair elections on Nov. 6.

Villagomez said there will be police officers and representatives of the Public Auditor Office and the Office of the Attorney General on election day and during the tabulation of ballots.

“The political parties have their own witnesses too,” she said when asked to comment on the allegation of a supporter of gubernatorial candidate who has been stating in social media that he believes that this coming election “will be the dirtiest.”

Villagomez said during the counting of votes, candidate representatives will witness it at the Pedro P. Tenorio Multi-Purpose Center in Susupe.

She said the counting machines are in good condition and election rules and regulations are fair.

She said the CEC commissioners will be the tabulators and that no other people will be touching the ballots except CEC staff when they help to feed the machines.

She said the commissioners will be resolving the rejected ballots.

Villagomez said elections in the CNMI are historically smooth, orderly, and fair.

It is the second time that Villagomez will oversee an election as the CEC executive director in the CNMI. The last time was during the 2016 election. She has been employed with CEC for 30 years now.

CEC board chair pro tem Jesus I. Sablan agreed with Villagomez that it will be smooth and fair election.

Sablan said they always get criticized, but as with the previous elections, they will just act according to CEC’s rules and regulations.

Ferdie De La Torre | Reporter
Ferdie Ponce de la Torre is a veteran journalist who has covered all news beats in the CNMI. Born in Lilo-an, Cebu City in the Philippines, De la Torre graduated from the University of Santo Tomas with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. He is a recipient of many commendations and awards, including the CNMI Judiciary’s prestigious Justice Award for his over 10 years of reporting on the judiciary’s proceedings and decisions. Contact him at ferdie_delatorre@saipantribune.com

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