The 2019 mid-term elections will surely be fun.
We have our usual clowns: Daniel Magtira, who claims to be the husband of Kris Aquino; Anson Tuana, who said he is an ex-boyfriend of Mocha Uson; and Emilio Delfin Tagean, 'King Salam of Maharlika Kingdom.'
They are welcome distractions to this serious exercise of electing our leaders.
We find heartwarming that there are decent people who have taken up the challenge to enter (and re-join) the political battlefield. A few of the names on the list of those who filed their certificate of candidacy (COC) last Friday prove that there is no dearth of brilliant and honorable Filipinos who willing to go through the ordeal of election to serve the people.
They are giving us a choice. That’s the essence of democracy.
The names that I was happy to see among the senatorial candidates are: Gary Alejano, Florin Hilbay, Neri Colmenares, Chel Diokno, Erin Tañada, Mar Roxas, and Samira Gutoc-Tomawis.
Up against more re-electionists, who enjoy high name-recall and established nationwide political network, it’s going to be an uphill climb to get to the Magic 12. But nothing is impossible if each one of us who believes in this country does our share.
For Gary Alejano, a bemedalled Marines officer, the Senate is another arena after completing his six-year term as party-list (Magdalo) representative.
Alejano introduced himself by saying, “Ako po ay dating sundalo. Ang marka ng sugat sa aking katawan ang siyang patunay ng aking pakikidigma sa mga kalaban ng estado at taumbayan."
I have covered Alejano through some of the battles he has fought and I can say that his strength comes from his unblemished integrity.
Former Solicitor General Florin T. Hilbay posted on Twitter a no-frills statement on why he has decided to enter the political ring: “Tayo po ay tatakbo para sa Senado bilang tugon sa hamon na pagsilbihan ang taumbayan at ipagpatuloy ang pagtanggol sa ating demokrasya.
“Simple lang: Ang tama, nilalabanan.
“Ang prinsipyong ito ang pinakamatatag na pundasyon para protektahan at itaguyod ang kapakanan ng sambayanan.”
Neri Colmenares is having a second try for the Senate. The first was in 2016 after he completed his term as Bayan Muna party-list representative in Congress.
Colmenares said the Duterte administration has failed miserably. The “change” that the then Davao City Mayor promised during the campaign turned out to be a nightmare with his bloody war on drugs while the economy worsens.
Colmenares bats for a genuine end to labor contractualization to improve the lives of millions of workers. He vows to push for measures that would lower food prices and provide workers with regular and decent-paying jobs.
There are also senatorial aspirants who have been tested to be short in competence but long in gall.
Former Philippine National Police Chief Ronald de la Rosa, also known as “Bato”, who carried out Duterte’s bloody war on drugs, formalized his bid for the Senate last Friday.
In an interview, he said he will focus on peace and order. Asked about economics and inflation, the heavy cross that Filipinos are bearing these days, De la Rosa admitted he is clueless about it.“Sa ngayon, talaga sabihin ko sa inyo, tanga ako diyan,” he said.
Netizen Bernard Ong came up with this explainer on inflation in a language that Bato will surely find easy to understand.
Ong said: “Hindi mahirap ang Economics, lalo na yang Inflation. Heto, libreng tutorial para iwas-nosebleed Ser.
“Dati P20 ang masking tape. Tapos nagkaubusan dahil sa EJK na utos ni Mayor. Ngayon P25 na. 25 percent inflation yan.
“Dati P10,000 ang bounty kada Nanlaban. Ngayon P15,000 na dahil tumaas ang pondo tsaka maingay yang mga human-rights, human-rights na yan. 50 percent inflation yan.
“Dati P50 ang kotong ng enforcer. Ngayon P100 na dahil Change is Scamming daw tsaka mas mahal ang bukbok rice para sa tatlong asawa. 100 percent inflation yan.
“Dati P6800 per gram ang shabu. Tapos palpak yung War on Drugs at walang tigil sa smuggling ang Davao Group. Ngayon P1800 per gram na lang. 74 percent deflation yan - opposite ng inflation.”
Ong said if De la Rosa still finds it difficult, he gave him an unsolicited advice: “Kapag nosebleed ka pa rin sa inflation, huwag ka na kaya tumakbo sa Senado. Marami nang komedyante at pasista doon. Huwag na dagdagan.”
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Disclaimer: The views in this blog are those of the blogger and do not necessarily reflect the views of ABS-CBN Corp.