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Former Philippine Election Official Denies Poll Rigging


A former Philippine election official at the center of vote-rigging charges against President Gloria Arroyo has denied that he conspired with her to rig last year's presidential poll.

Former Elections Commissioner Virgilio Garcillano said from an unknown location in a television interview that aired Sunday "I swear that there was no such thing as the rigging of the last elections."

Allegations that Ms. Arroyo rigged last year's polls are largely based on illegal wiretaps in which she is heard speaking to an election official about ensuring a million-vote victory.

In September, President Arroyo's allies in the House of Representatives defeated an opposition move to impeach her on charges of vote-rigging.

Mr. Garcillano, who is wanted by authorities, disappeared when the audio tapes surfaced and his whereabouts are unknown.

Some information for this report provided by AP and AFP.

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