Thursday, July 16, 2009

Flip-flop on IFES & KPU, Obama's early congrats

The Election Monitoring Body (Bawaslu) grilled officers at International Foundation of Electoral System (IFES) on Wednesday about their role in a live counting of votes published by General Election Commission (KPU) for July 8 presidential election.
According to Bawaslu, IFES admitted they only provided the system and had no idea how the group of voting organization (KPPS) and polling stations (TPS) have been selected in the counting process. "IFES admitted, their role was mainly to prepare the server and IT professionals to install the program," Wahidah Suaib, member of Bawaslu said
Suaib further said, "IFES initially budgeted US$200,000 for the process, but after discussions with telco operator, the cost charged was only for transmission of SMS" 
How the system worked? "Data transmitted from KPPS to Telkomsel (telco operator), and then transmitted to the "system" and KPU's server," Suaib said.
This is completely in contrast with KPU's statement before that KPU only published live votes counting from data gathered and processed by IFES (with funds from USAID). Others said, data processing is under the control of BPPT (The Agency for the Assessment and Application of Technology), ministry of research and technology. Can we say, this is an independent process?
Interestingly, Bappenas admitted it already warned KPU not to conduct such live votes counting because TPS used by IFES of 45,000 units is only 10% of the total polling stations. Bappenas also disagree with KPU's interpretation of IFES program with "real count" while it's not real count because it covers only 10% of polling stations. 
In fact, KPU announced in July 9 that there will be 104,000 polling stations to be counted under the SMS program, but then stopped when only data from 45,000 polling stations published. The termination triggered rumors that actually SBY-Boediono only got less than 50% votes if data from the whole 104,000 polling stations published. According to the rumor, SBY-Boediono only got 47.32% votes, followed by Megawati-Prabowo with 32.15%, and Kalla-Wiranto 20.53%. Meanwhile, KPU's published data based on the vote counting with IFES system stopped when SBY-Boediono got 61.66%, Megawati-Prabowo 28.57%, and Kalla-Wiranto 9.77%.
This data is pretty much similar with quick counts from various pollsters shown here!
Unfortunately, no words from IFES. "We just can't comment on that," Anhar Zamal, IFES program manager said.
So, may be Barrack Obama's congratulation to SBY-Boediono is way too early. Unless that US government want to be called "take sides". Why not waiting until the whole election results confirmed and legally sound? Why would US in a rush to congratulate SBY-Boediono?




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