Bantay ng Bayan Primer

What is the Bantay ng Bayan? These are reports on observations, findings, and recommendations on the critical aspects of the election process given at regular intervals to the Filipino people. The BnB is a return to the original role NAMFREL performed in 1983 when it was first engaged in the Philippine election process.

When will the BnB reports be released? There will be pre-election, election day, and post election reports.

Why is NAMFREL doing Bantay ng Bayan? The reports will:

1. promote greater awareness and understanding of the election process
2. contribute to building confidence in the election
3. support the aspiration of COMELEC to have a free, fair and credible election
4. refocus NAMFREL’s role in light of the automation of the May 2010 elections
5. engage its nationwide volunteers in the entire election process
Lastly, the generation of the reports does not need accreditation from the COMELEC.
What are the sources of data of the BnB?
1. Review of official documents, materials and paraphernalia of the COMELEC (Certified Voters’ List, PCOS machines, Ballots, Indelible ink, Book of Precinct)
2. Research and Personal Observation by the BnB Volunteers (Campaign materials, Indications of vote buying and vote selling, illegal voting, unlawful electioneering, threat, intimidation and undue influence, etc.)
3. Interviews with Key Informants and Resource Persons
4. Interviews with Voters
5. Reports from other sources (e.g. other EMOs like AES Watch, newspaper, radio and TV reports, etc.)
How will the reports be disseminated? The reports will be released through the following channels:
1. Tri-media Conference
2. NAMFREL Website
3. Social Networking Sites
4. E-mail dissemination to NAMFREL Partner Organizations and other contacts
How are BnB reports different from news articles or opinions in political columns or from editorials in newspapers?
The BnB reports are based on data gathered by its network of volunteers throughout the country, using uniform data gathering instruments, based on standards and parameters of free and fair elections practiced in all democratic countries worldwide, and shall cover a broad range of topics on the election. The reports are not speculative, nor simple expression of opinions, nor touching on personalities.

What are international standards of free and fair elections?
“Everyone has the right to take part in the government of his country, directly or through freely chosen representatives.” (Universal Declaration of Human Rights Article 21)
1. Transparency of the electoral process
2. An effective, impartial and independent election administration body
3. Equality for candidates and political parties
4. Equitable access to media
5. Voter education programs to ensure that voters understand the electoral process, the choices
they may vote for, and practical information on where, when and how to vote
6. Peaceful atmosphere in which candidates, parties, and voters can campaign and vote
7. Prompt publication of detailed results
8. Access by observers
  (Source: Handbook for EU Election Observation Missions)
What are the key success factors of the BnB?
1. Nationwide coverage
2. Adhering to international criteria of free and fair elections
3. Transparent methodology
4. Uniform data gathering instrument
5. Documentation of results and accountable forms
6. Non-partisan data gatherers
7. Exercise of trust at all levels
Who are the players the BnB is looking at?
1. The Voters
- Commission
- Board of Election Inspectors
- Board of Canvassers
3. Candidates
4. Political Parties
5. Police and Military
6. Smartmatic (Technology Supplier)
7. Election Monitoring Organizations (EMOs)
8. PPCRV (Citizens’ Arm)
9. Media
How long is the reporting period?
Pre-election Reports will range from 8 – 20 days from distribution of report forms to rendering the BnB Report

Election Day Report:
Critical incidents shall be reported as they happen via SMS or telephone
Accomplished Datasheet shall be submitted on May 11, the day after the election.
BnB reports to the nation at 12 NN and at 8 PM

Post-election Reports:
3 days after the election, integrating the Election Day Datasheet
30 days after the election
What is the Procedure for Generating BnB Reports?

     Distribution & Collection of Data Sheets
     Analysis and Report Generation
Election Day Report System (Covering 30% of precincts nationwide)
1. Municipal or City BnB Observers Observe following the BnB Datasheet Submit accomplished Datasheet to PC on May 11
2. Municipal or City BnB Observers Observe critical incident send info to PC via call or SMS; PC verify, probe, and validate info send info to National via call or SMS
Bantay ng Bayan Organization
What and Who are the Responsibility Centers in the BnB?
1. Chairman, National Council, Sec-Gen and Spokesman present BnB Report to the public.
2. Oversight Committee (comprised of the Chairman and members of the National Council) review BnB Reports. Members of the National Council contribute through individual Reports.
3. BnB Team develops the concept, mechanics, and data gathering instruments, conducts training, integrates the draft reports, and undertakers tasks to ensure the quality of the BnB reports.
4. Secretariat under the Secretary General coordinates the various tasks in the BnB reporting cycle, including but not limited to providing manpower, distribution and collection of Datasheets, data encoding, media coordination, logistics, etc.
5. Provincial Coordinators (PCs) oversee the reporting cycle at the provincial level, recruit municipal and city BnB observers, conduct training on data gathering, distribute and collect data, and develop reports at the provincial level when necessary / appropriate.
6. BnB Observers (2 per city or municipality) – organize a work plan for gathering the data, secure official documents, observe the developments and events required in the report period, conduct interviews with voters and key informants, and submit reports to the Provincial Coordinator at appointed deadline
Who will make good M or C BnB Observers?
The following qualifications are desirable:
1. Knowledge: the election process, rules and calendars; BnB operation
2. Skills: oral and written communication; keen observation; probing
3. Attributes: non-partisan; committed to the objectives of BnB, resourceful, tactful; courteous
4. Education: at least high school level
Where can we source our M or C BnB Observers?
1. Regular NAMFREL volunteers
2. Newly signed-up Volunteers (Secretariat will endorse to the PCs)
3. Members of partner organizations
4. Retirees, students, teachers not serving as BEI
Facts About the May 2010 Elections
80 Provinces, 137 Cities, 1,497 Municipalities
1 President, 1 Vice President , 12 Senators, 230 District Representatives, 57 Party List Representatives
Local: 80 Governors, 80 Vice Governors, 137 City Mayors, 137 City Vice Mayors, 1,497 Municipal Mayors, 1,497 Municipal Vice Mayors, and Sanggunian Members at Province, City and Municipal levels
50,723,734 Registered voters as of Jan. 15, 2010
45,041,777 Registered voters in the 2007 elections
75,471 Clustered Precints using Precint Count Optical Scan (PCOS) Machines
6,729 Backup PCOS Machines
Total # of machines: 82,200 PCOS Machines (actual + backup)
P 7.2 B contract price with with Smartmatic Inc.
P 87,591 cost of leasing each unit of PCOS
Political Parties
Majority party – To be determined
Minority parties – To be determined
144 to run under the Party List System