1 December 2009

Smartmatic's PR disaster

Presumably intent in doing damage limitation, Smartmatic dispatched a couple of executives to Mexico City to brief the press about the mounting suspicions regarding its operations, and the way in which it had won a tender for the provision of biometric technology. Robert Cook and Jim Bell, quoted by the Mexican press as Smartmatic's representatives, stated today that the company has "participated in electoral processes in 70 countries... have never been sued by any government... and that President Obama voted using Smartmatic technology." These three statements merit further scrutiny:
  1. It would be great, for Smartmatic's own credibility sake, if Messieurs Cook and Bell can provide a list of the 70 countries in which Smartmatic has, succesffully, participated. Of particular interest, commercial operations in European countries where Smartmatic has been involved, according to Cook.
  2. Smartmatic has never been sued by any government. However, how could one interpret the investigation launched in Chicago in 2006, after local authorities found out that Smartmatic-operated Sequoia machines "did not perform adequately"? Moreover, what to make of Smartmatic's decision to drop Sequoia Voting System to prevent further investigations from CFIUS into its ownership structure, and ties to the Chavez regime?
  3. President Obama voted using Smartmatic technology. Does that mean that Smartmatic continues to provide technology to Sequoia Voting Systems, despite the fact that it announced that is was selling it?

No comments: