Vote buying goes hi tech: Comelec tells GCash, Maya to flag suspicious fund transfers

The Commission on Elections (Comelec) is seeking the cooperation of e-wallet operators GCash and Maya in apprehending politikos buying votes ahead of the October 2023 barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) elections.

Comelec Chairman George Erwin Garcia said they are looking to sign memoranda of agreement with the two e-payment companies to establish flags for mass sending of money.

“A red flag would be if someone sent a certain amount of money to a large number of recipients,” Garcia told reporters.

Under the planned agreement, the e-wallet operators should flag suspicious transactions involving the sending of cash to 50 people, or even to hundreds, as attempts to buy votes for the upcoming polls.

Garcia said the Comelec will prosecute to the fullest extent of the law those found to be buying votes, either in cash or kind.