Political Partie and Elections

Ex-Comelec adviser asks all commissioners to resign
CenPEG News
March 11, 2016

A former Comelec adviser today told all poll commissioners led by Andres Bautista to resign if they cannot implement the Supreme Court (SC) order on voter receipts.

On the practicability of voting machine receipts
H.A. Barrios
March 8, 2016

By itself, your vote receipt has no practical use. You cannot check if it has been included or excluded in the election return. You cannot affirm or complain about the election results based on your vote receipt. This is because the receipt represents your individual act while the election return represents the collective act of your precinct.

Implications of a court ruling that voting receipts are the VVPAT
H.A. Barrios
March 8, 2016

A ruling that vote receipts are required as the VVPAT would preempt further debate and establish by inference that the voting act is deemed completed upon putting the ballot in the machine. By that ruling, the receipt would be considered as the document that represents the act of election.

VIDEO of AES Watch's TAPAT demo & mock election July 2015 at Pamantasan ng Lungson ng Maynila

FEARLESS FORECAST (EPISODE II): Comelec will not comply with e-Commerce Law in 2016 elections
Nelson J. Celis
Fearless Forecast, Manila Times
Feb. 9, 2016
Post by CenPEG.org
Feb. 12, 2016

There’s no such thing as “machine” digital signature in the annals of the Philippine law to represent the signatures of BEIs/BOCs on written ERs/COCs. Smartmatic’s claim for the validity of their “machine” digital signature in the past two elections is a big LIE!

Fearless forecast: Comelec’s non-compliance with the AES law in 2016 (last of 2 parts)

Nelson J. Celis
Manila Times
January 12, 2016
Posted by CenPEG Jan. 14, 2016

Comelec Chair Andy Bautista (left photo) and movie icon Nora Aunor (right photo) test the Filipino-invented TAPAT voting machine during a public demo organized by AES Watch at the Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila last July 20, 2015. Photos by CenPEG

It’s no-brainer, non-compliance with the law is equivalent to converting the whole AES project to a Vote Cheating Machinery…’Abangan!’

Fearless forecast: Comelec will not comply with the AES law in 2016

Automated Election System (AES) Watch has again predicted that on February 9, 2016, three (3) months before the national and local elections (NLEs) on May 9, 2016, Comelec will not comply with RA 9369 or the automated election law. The prediction is based on Comelec’s past performances in 2010 and 2013, specifically its violation of Section 11 and other provisions associated with information technology (IT).

Posted by CenPEG.org
January 8, 2016

Cast of Clans: From Aguinaldo to Aquino, dynasties rule

By: Lira Dalangin-Fernandez, InterAksyon.com
December 19, 2015 11:31 AM
The online news portal of TV5
Posted by CenPEFG.org
Dec. 22, 2015


MANILA, Philippines -- From the country’s first president, Emilio Aguinaldo, to Benigno Aquino III, the incumbent, Philippine politics has always been essentially a family business.

The True Cost of a Political Campaign
Written by Wilson Lee Flores
Posted by CenPEG from ROGUE Magazine / rogue.ph

image from rogue.ph

To build a case for oneself in this country’s forthcoming national elections, a candidate requires charisma, connections, and billions of pesos in campaign funding.

Management decisions: Based on RA 9369 or purely Comelec’s?
Nelson J. Celis, DBA
Sept. 15, 2015
Posted by CenPEG from Manila Times

We never learned our lessons in the past! The IRR is still hanging in the air. Messrs. Chairmen of JCOC, please follow up Comelec to release the IRR soonest and to include the rules governing JCOC; that is, for example, should Comelec get approval from JCOC before anything else? Or better yet, upon presenting the JCOC recommendations to the Congress, will that be the proper time for Comelec to act?

(The following public statement was read by the Center for People Empowerment in Governance in this morning’s conversation with the press / CenPEG Roundtable with the Media in partnership with the Kamuning Bakery Café’s regular Kape’t Pandesal sa Kamuning.)




CenPEG’s 2nd roundtable with media showcases TAPAT
Contributed by Christine Rimando

Young TAPAT developer Angelo Villasanta (middle) shows media how to operate the machine, with Dr. Nelson Celis watching. CenPEG photo

After the successful launch of its first Roundtable Discussion (RTD) with the Media on June 19, 2015, the Center for People Empowerment in Governance (CenPEG) held its second RTD last July 10, 2015 at the historic Kamuning Bakery Café in Quezon City.

Comelec ‘parallel biddings’ questioned before high court
Contributed by Louielyn M. dela Cruz

The group raise the copies of the 50-page petition against Comelec filed at the Supreme Court last July 7, 2015. (CenPEG photo)

The Center for People Empowerment and Governance (CenPEG) together with the Alliance of Concerned Teachers (ACT)-Philippines and 15 others filed a petition on July 7, 2015 asking the Supreme Court (SC) to stop the Commission on Elections (Comelec) from proceeding with the “parallel bidding” for the refurbishment of the existing Precinct Count Optical Scan (PCOS) machines and for the lease of the 93,977 more Optical Marker Reader (OMR) units for the 2016 national and local elections.

CenPEG holds 1st roundtable with media on presidential poll results

June 29, 2015

CenPEG media roundtable panel CenPEG Media Posting: CenPEG media roundtable panel (L-R): Bobby Tuazon, Wilson Lee Flores, moderator, and Temario C. Rivera. CenPEG photo

The Center for People Empowerment in Governance (CenPEG) had the soft launch of its Roundtable Discussion with the Media last June 19, 2015 at the historic Kamuning Bakery café in Quezon City. The first “Kapihan at Pandesal sa Kamuning” (coffee and bread at Kamuning) was hosted by newspaper columnist Wilson Lee Flores.

For the various reports on the CenPEG roundtable, read: mediareports1stCenPEG RTDwithmediaKapihansaKamuningcafe June192015pdf 

Filipino IT can do it!

June 29, 2015

For the first time in the history of Philippine elections, two alternative election technology solutions were unveiled in a dry-run sponsored by the Automated Election System Watch (AES Watch) June 11, 2015 at the University of the Philippines’ Ang Bahay ng Alumni, Diliman, Quezon City.




Experts: Nuisance bets reflect disillusionment, uneven playing field
By Levi Mora (philstar.com) |
Updated October 28, 2015 - 3:43pm

Posted by CenPEG from philstar.com

“This (dominance of elite) is one compelling reason for calling the election system as an unfair playing field, not competitive, and limits access to the poor but definitely qualified candidates." - Prof. Bobby Tuazon

Bayan Muna Rep. Neri Colmenares. CenPEG photo

Partylist solon presses for tax cuts

One of the tax measures pending in the House of Representatives if House Bill (HB) 5401. Authored by Bayan Muna Partylist Reps. Neri Colmenares and Carlos Isagani Zarate, the bill seeks to restructure income brackets and rates of individual income tax.

Putrajaya Declaration: Zero Tolerance for Impunity

IACC2015Statement of the International Anti-Corruption Conference held in Malaysia

Posted on 4 Sep, 2015

Nearly 1,200 people from 130 countries gathered in Putrajaya, Malaysia to discuss one of the world’s biggest challenges: how impunity enables the spread of corruption. Delegates came together to find the most effective strategies to stop impunity and hold to account those who benefit from the abuse of power, secret deals and bribery.

Finally bearing fruit or foiled again?
Center for People Empowerment in Governance 
12:01 AM | Philippine Daily Inquirer, Talk of the Town,
A10 Sunday, January 4th, 2015

While without an FOI law the citizenry has admittedly had mixed success in combating corruption and other governance issues, a bad FOI law could make that common concern even more problematic.

New defense deal with U.S. needs Senate concurrence, opponents say
CenPEG position paper read at Senate foreign relations committee hearing

Senate foreign affairs committee members led by Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago. CenPEG photo

The Philippine Senate’s foreign relations committee, on Dec. 1, 2014, was set to file a resolution expressing the upper legislative chamber’s “disappointment” over the signing of the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) without Senate concurrence.

Download the papers here >>>

CenPEG vice chair on dzmm interview on VFA

CenPEG Vice ChairCenPeg Vice Chair Professor Roland G. Simbulan was interviewed extensively with Atty. Evalyn Ursua by tele-radio DZMM anchor Henry Omaga Diaz last October 25, 2014 about the murder of Jennifer Laude and the issue of jurisdiction and custody under the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA).

CenPEG’s 4th Roundtable: Canadian professor talks on ‘globalization of war’

Michel Chossudovsky (right) stresses as point as CenPEG's Temario C. Rivera listens. (CenPEG photo)

Michel Chossudovsky, emeritus professor at the University of Ottawa, spoke on the “globalization of war” at CenPEG’s fourth Roundtable Discussion on Oct. 14, 2014, University of the Philippines’ Asian Center.


Global Currents

U.S.-based scholar E. San Juan, Jr. interviews Bill Fletcher Jr., African-American public intellectual

"I do not anticipate any changes in the near future in the absence of a movement on the ground in the USA that pushes the US on foreign policy generally and the US/Philippines relationship in particular. Frankly, the relationship is very comfortable for the USA and the ruling circles see no reason to change this." - Bill Fletcher, Jr.

WORKING FOR THE FEW Political capture and economic inequality
Oxfam Briefing Paper, Jan. 20, 2014
Posted by CenPEG.org (Jan. 27, 2014)

Economic inequality is rapidly increasing in the majority of countries. The wealth of the world is divided in two: almost half going to the richest one percent; the other half to the remaining 99 percent. The bottom half of the world’s population owns the same as the richest 85 people in the world.

The 8-Day Palestine-Israel War

Nov. 29, 2012 was the UN-declared International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People. (The following day, Palestine – whose 8 million people have lived mostly in Palestinian territory occupied by Israel since 1967 – received its non-state member status from the UN General Assembly.) The Philippine Interfaith Solidarity Forum on Palestine was held on Nov. 29 at the National Council of Churches in the Philippines (NCCP), Quezon City, where CenPEG Fellow Bobby M. Tuazon gave a talk.


INANG LUPA, INANG BAYAN: This time, National Artist Bienvenido Lumbera is actor
Re-posted by CenPEG Feb. 25, 2016


UP President Alfredo E. Pascual: keynote speaker

Conference calls for people-centered policy actions for Asian development and peace
February 4, 2016

“Yet, development and peace in the region extends deeper than having no war and having a good economy. It is also important that the discourse on development and peace does not forget the marginalized. We always need to ask development ‘for whom?’”


Conference-attendeesConference participants


WWII 'comfort women' urge visiting Japanese emperor: OFFICIAL GOV’T APOLOGY, UPHOLD TRUTH, and JUST COMPENSATION
January 27, 2016

COMFORT-WOMEN-pandesal-forumComfort Women of the Philippines appeal to President Aquino to convey to visiting Japanese Emperor Akihito their demands for official Japanese government apology, historical accuracy, and just compensation for World War II sex slavery war crimes during World War II. CenPEG photo

“It was all talk, as far as the lolas are concerned. Congress never came up with anything, except with resolutions filed by the Makabayan bloc.”

CenPEG welcomes new Fellows
CenPEG.org news Dec. 16, 2015

cenpeg_fellowsCenPEG Fellowship

New Fellows of the Center for People Empowerment in Governance (CenPEG) were formally welcomed to the policy think tank with an induction on Dec. 12, 2015 in Quezon City.

CenPEG releases travelogue
CenPEG News
Nov. 16, 2015

A travelogue launched on Oct. 17, 2015 was CenPEG’s 16th book release in 11 years since it was founded. But it was a different kind of travelogue.



GMA scoop Bien & NoraNational Artist Bien Lumbera with voter Nora Aunor (GMA News photo)

Thus exclaimed students, teachers, NGO leaders, Church leaders, and even one Comelec official. They referred to TAPAT (for TrAnsPArenT Election System) – an alternative election technology solution designed by father-and-son tandem, Arnold and Angelo Villasanta.

Issue Analysis and Commentary


Probing presidential platforms
Bobby Tuazon
Philippine Daily Inquirer / Talk of the Town June 21
March 2, 2016
Posted by CenPEG.org

The challenges facing the next president are daunting: income disparities considered among the highest in Asia; derailed peace processes with communist and Moro rebels; high incidence of crime and corruption; the lack of an FOI law; low public trust in the elite-ruled government; an unstable state; and a weak criminal justice system.

December 9, 2015

Political families: Forever in the grip of power

Genuine elections can only take place in a society that has ridden itself of the dominating power of political families. They can only happen in a new society where the social and political structures provide equal opportunities for participative governance toward enhancing the quality of life.


Do platforms count in elections?
Bobby M. Tuazon
October 19th, 2015

Unlike elections, the parliament of the streets remains the more potent tool for addressing public issues, where critical awareness turns into mass mobilization, and causes become change factors.

June 22, 2015

Realpolitik in the maritime tiff

The real menace to America is the weakening of its economic power due to heavy losses in the 2008 financial crisis. The crisis, says George Soros, “led to the system’s collapse. The crash was a watershed moment because it marked the end of U.S. supremacy.” The way this setback is driving the U.S. to tighten its containment on China by riding on the maritime rows could lead to miscalculations. Right now, China will not budge.


China’s challenge to PH sovereignty

Roland G. Simbulan
Philippine Daily Inquirer / Talk of the Town
June 21, 2015
Posted by CenPEG.org

It is time to reexamine the internal and external policies that have made us lose effective control over our natural resources, economic activities and even our own State.


Choosing the next president
Bobby M. Tuazon
Philippine Daily Inquirer
June 4th, 2015
Posted by CenPEG

Because choosing the right candidate depends on the latter’s vote-getting capability, no one knows whether the one who wins is prepared to grapple with the country’s complex problems of underdevelopment, wide income disparity, unemployment, and the like.


Fixing the presidency, reforming the state
Bobby M. Tuazon
Posted from Philippine Daily Inquirer
April 13, 2015
Posted by CenPEG

But the dim public perception of the President cannot be attributed solely to massive disappointment over the gap between his 2010 “social contract” and his failure to walk the talk, compounded by the poverty and unemployment that worsened under his watch. It reflects mounting public dissatisfaction starting from the Marcos years over the misuse of power from one administration to the next for personal gain, corruption, plunder and other crimes. It is a collective narrative of a people who removed incorrigible presidents and replaced them with persons of the same mold.

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