By Maureen D. Atonen

In the days of PCOS Machine, polling centers without electricity is a great challenge. To deal with this, the Commission on Election (COMELEC) of the region requested for standby generator sets with contingency batteries.

The region as of 2013 has two hundred one (201) voting centers with no power supply. This is 14 percent of the total number of voting centers regionwide.

Apayao has 57 polling centers without electricity, followed by Kalinga with 56 polling centers.  Ifugao, Abra, Benguet and Mountain Province have 43, 30, 12 and 7 polling centers respectively without electricity.

The PCOS Machine for these polling centers will be battery powered. A COMELEC-CAR Memorandum dated April 20, 2013 stated that extra batteries and generators are needed per PCOS Machine. One battery will not last until the end of the voting hours on May 13 as the same will also be used during the final testing and sealing which could take half a day.

Meanwhile, the Provincial Election Supervisors of the Provinces of Abra and Kalinga requested for helicopters in the delivery of election paraphernalia and supplies. In Abra, the upper barangays in the municipality of Tineg; all barangays in the municipality of Tubo; and barangay Buneg in the municipality Lacub need the services of a helicopter. In Kalinga, only barangays Limus and Apatan in the municipality of Pinukpuk need helicopter services.