Dominion seeks $10-M for source code: Comelec
MANILA - Dominion Voting Systems Inc. wants $10 million for the use of the source code that will run the Smartmatic-owned precinct count optical scan (PCOS) machines in the midterm elections.
Commission on Elections Chairman Sixto Brillantes said he has talked to the representatives of Dominion to facilitate the release of the source code amid the firm’s legal battle with Smartmatic.
Under the Automated Election System law, the poll body is required to open the source code for review by February 13, or 90 days before the elections. The source code has been withheld by certifier Systest Labs Inc. (SLI), however, because of the pendency of the lawsuit.
Dominion owns the PCOS technology, which was licensed to Smartmatic. In 2012, Dominion terminated the licensing agreement. Thereafter, Smartmatic filed a collection case, which Dominion countered also with a claim suit.
Brillantes said SLI has already reviewed the source code and did not note any problems.
“Hinihingi ng Dominion is $10 million na utang ng Smartmatic. If we give them the 10 million, they will give everything to us. Sabi ko, wag naman, ginagawa niyo kaming collection agency,” he said.
He suggested that the money be put in an escrow account, instead.
He explained they can source the money from the P270 million in retention fund and the P400 million transmission contract it awarded to Smartmatic. "At least, Dominion will be guaranteed di sila tatakbuhan ng pera ng Smartmatic."
He said even Smartmatic has asked SLI to release the source code. "Wala naman talaga problema. Natural tama yun, alam nila (SLI) na Dominion may-ari nun.”
For now, the Comelec can only wait for the results of the certification of the technical evaluation committee (TEC) on the automated elections even without the source code.
The source code should have been part of the committee review.
Brillantes is hoping the TEC will give them the seal of good housekeeping even without the source code.