After the political crisis experienced by Honduras about three years ago, everything has gone back to normal. Now it looks like winds of modernization are coming to the electoral system. Electronic voting is a possibility that is being considered by the Supreme Electoral Court, maximum electoral authority in the Central American country.
The electoral institution, hand in hand with Smartmatic, presented a proposal to representatives from the political parties that will participate in an internal election next November. If this electoral modality gets accepted, electronic voting could be implemented in the province of Francisco Morazán.
“What needs to be analyzed is that if we solve the political problem that always arises with the 23 deputies, the controversy related to mayors, and if we eliminate resources such as paper ballots, certificates, and all that sort of logistics, then we will be able to see what this option means against the other,” considered the TSE Magistrate, Enrique Ortez Sequeira.
Mario Aguilar, representative from the National Party, favored automation and considered it a viable path for the November Primary Elections, “provided that an audit of the process is guaranteed for the participating parties.”
Representatives from Smartmatic explained to the leaders of the parties, at the headquarters of the Supreme Electoral Court, the reliability of a correctly implemented electronic voting system.
The company, which intends to initiate vote automation, assured that it has ample experience in the US, South America (Argentina, Colombia, Peru, Venezuela), Asia, and most recently in Europe (Belgium).
Spokespeople from the company remarked that even though the initial investment is high, in time electronic voting becomes cheaper than manual voting. Besides, they presented some of its advantages like speed, reliability, and security, guaranteed by multiple levels of control mechanisms, as well as the frequent electoral audits the system is subjected to.
We’ll have to wait for the answer from the political parties, and see if it will be possible to initiate, even if only with one province, the path towards automation in Honduras.