City Councilor Danilo Dayanghirang has refuted allegations of fraud against him and other officials of the National Philippines Councilor League (PCL).
Dayanghirang, the incumbent PCL chairman who is running for reelection, said he could not have been involved in any fraud because the elections are supervised by the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG).
The DILG, he said, had approved the computers to be used in the election.
“We just leave it to the investigation; how can I be the cause of fraud? I was not even part in the preparation of everything. I don’t need to answer it,” Dayanghirang told Philippine News Agency (PNA) on Wednesday.
Dayanghirang was reacting to a Facebook post of Legazpi, Albay 2nd District Rep. Joey Salceda whose nephew, Albay provincial board member Jesciel Richard Salceda, is running against Dayanghirang.
“How shameful the National PCL attempted to cheat Jesciel. And no matter what, they will cheat by whatever means to hide their past malfeasance,” Salceda wrote on his Facebook Page last week.
But Dayanghirang countered that it was Jesciel’s camp that “caused the delay” in the elections.
Hours before the voting time, Jesciel’s camp allegedly inserted new features in the computers to be used in the polls, causing glitches in the entire computer system.
“The IT (information technology) guy of other camp was already at the machine to gain access, dictating the features to the official programmer hired by PCL who even cried due to pressures onsite,” Dayanghirang said.
The glitches in the voting machine, he said, affected most of the candidates in which the name of the opposing candidate appeared instead of the one being voted on.
“It happens to all of us if you voted for a certain candidate, the name of the opponent appears. But what is always highlighted in social media is my name,” he said.
Before the PCL elections, Dayanghirang accused Salceda of massive vote-buying.
“Since day one, the credibility of the election has been affected when they (Salceda’s camp) admitted paying PHP7.3 million for the 583 delegates’ registration from a private check for councilors who traveled on official business, supposedly chargeable against public local funds,” he said.
He pointed out that even Salceda admitted this in an interview with a national broadsheet, prompting him to file a complaint before DILG and Office of the Ombudsman.
The counter-allegations have prompted the DILG to schedule new elections. (PNA)