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News > Colombia

Colombia: Petro Worried About Audit-less Vote-counting Software

  • The presidential candidate Gustavo Petro (c), of the Historical Pact (Pacto Historico)

    The presidential candidate Gustavo Petro (c), of the Historical Pact (Pacto Historico) | Photo: EFE/ Mauricio Duenas Castañeda

Published 27 May 2022

The Colombian presidential candidate of the leftist coalition Pacto Histórico, Gustavo Petro, expressed on Friday his concern about the lack of audit of the software that will be used to count the votes in this Sunday's elections.

"We have a big problem in these elections and it is that neither the internal technical nor external audit of the software used to count the results of the more than 120,000 voting tables in Colombia has been allowed. The technical audit to the software is a guarantee for all parties, candidacies and society", said a video of the senator.

 International Mission Is Ready for the Colombian Elections

The candidate of Pacto Histórico asked the international commissions to demand the Registraduría General - in charge of organizing the elections - to answer the impediment to carrying out an audit.

"The international commissions should pay attention and address directly to the Registrar demanding or asking at least why there was no technical audit to the Registrar's software," he said.

Petro also said that by employing "delaying tactics," technical audits were prevented for "the algorithms, the source code of the software of the pre-count and counting in the scrutinies made by the private company "Thomas And Greg."

"It generates many doubts about what could happen on Sunday," he added.

The doubts about the elections and its system began in March when irregularities were evidenced in the voting results for Congress, for which a Guarantee Table was called, where all parties were heard. The Government ordered an external audit of the software used within the National Civil Registry.

The Ministry of Finance allocated more than 3,000 million Colombian pesos for hiring the external audit. Still, last May 24, the National Electoral Council -in charge of regulating, inspecting, monitoring and controlling all the electoral activity of the political groups and their candidates- said that it would not be hired.

CNE magistrate, Luis Guillermo Pérez, argued that hiring an audit "a few days before Election Day is unfeasible" and pointed out that there was no "State commitment to carry it out."

A little more than 39 million Colombians are eligible to vote this Sunday in the country and abroad in the elections for president and vice president for the period 2022-2026.

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