Spotted: PPCRV volunteers dancing, singing at command center

May 17, 2022 - 3:18 PM
PPCRV volunteers
Volunteers doing election-related duties at the Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting on the University of Santo Tomas on May 15, 2022. (Facebook/PPCRV)

Volunteers at the Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (PPCRV) command center were spotted engaging in karaoke and dance sessions amid hours of election-related duties.

Clips of these were uploaded on social media over the weekend and on Monday as the Church-based poll watchdog continues to help the Commission on Elections in its goal to have a fraud-free election.

A reporter was able to record some volunteers holding a karaoke session on stage.

Some also danced to K-pop group TWICE’s “I Can’t Stop Me,” as seen in another reporter’s video.

This was shared by PPCRV’s Facebook page with the hashtag “#PPCRVHappy.”

“Sina Dahyun at Jihyo ba ‘yun? (starstruck emoji). Mga #ONCE, naki-sayaw sa Command Center!” it said, referencing some of the girl group’s members.

Another Twitter user also shared a different video of the volunteers dancing in the center.

This was not the first time that PPCRV volunteers engaged in such moments.

In the 2016 national elections, some of them were spotted dancing “to stay alert” in their duty.

A clip of it was shared by a reporter before.

The PPCRV is responsible for voter education initiatives and ensuring that the election results are accurate by conducting a parallel vote count once the partial and unofficial results come in.

“To explain to the public, what we are doing is to answer that ever-big question and doubt in their mind, ‘What happens to my ballot after I stick it into the VCM (vote-counting machine)?’ Nobody sees that right?” PPCRV chair Myla Villanueva said in an interview before.

“So to alleviate and assuage that concern, this process in UST (University of Santo Tomas) is assuring that no dagdag-bawas is happening. There was not a hack and things are as it should be,” she added.

“Dagdag-bawas” is a term for vote padding-shaving.

The PPCRV is given the fourth copy of the transmitted election returns from the VCMs. The results are manually encoded to check if these will match with the electronic results from the Comelec transparency server.

Different people are assigned to manually receive, sort, encode, and review data that come from the election returns. The encoding process is also checked twice to ensure accuracy.

“What we do at PPCRV is to check against transmission fraud when ERs (election returns) go into cyberspace. To protect against a term you know as dagdag-Bawas. We compare pre-transmission ERs to post-transmission ERs. Together [with] others, it is a wholistic audit of the process, in any election cycle,” Villanueva said in another interview.

Meanwhile, those conducting random manual audits are the National Citizens’ Movement for Free Elections and the Legal Network for Truthful Elections.

The process entails reading out ballots in a randomly chosen precinct, manually tallying them and then comparing them to the official count from vote-counting machines.