Comelec data undamaged by fire

Electrical fire? A portion of the Comelec’s information technology department sustained damage from the fire that broke out at the 7th floor of the Palacio del Gobernador in Intramuros, Manila on Sunday. | PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY OF COMELEC PIO

Vital election records and data, whether print or digital, were not affected by the fire that hit the Commission on Elections (Comelec) main office at the Palacio del Gobernador in Intramuros, Manila, poll spokesperson John Rex Laudiangco assured the public on Monday.

Laudiangco said the fire that broke out before 7 p.m. was limited to the reception area of Comelec’s information technology department located on the seventh floor of the building. The fire was declared out by 8:16 p.m. after reaching the second alarm.

No personnel of the Comelec or responding members of the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) were reported injured in the incident still being investigated by arson probers to determine its cause.

All Comelec servers, vaults, equipment, and documents in all of the offices and departments were declared “safe, intact, undamaged and secure” by the poll body.

It said that digital files of the said documents may be viewed at its official website at, ditto with the election results via

Backups of election-related data, including voters’ registration, are also available in a secure, off-site location, the Comelec said. Other digital and physical files pertaining to administrative and operational matters are also safe and secure, it added.

While the BFP is investigating, all personnel of Comelec offices and departments at Palacio del Gobernador will be on work-from-home status. However, a skeleton force was formed to do inventory, assessment, and other administrative functions.

Laudiangco said ahead of the release of the result of the BFP’s investigation that arson may not be involved based on his talks with probers.

Michael Pingol With Pat Santos

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