Skip to main content

2019 Philippines National and Local Election - Could this be the Politics that Will Save Us All?

Re-post: As the Philippines National/Senatorial and Local elections will be held on May 13, 2019, I think it is good to remind Filipinos once again the essence and flow of elections in the country. Local or national elections, not much of a difference if its about our culture of voting. Choose the right candidate, vote him or her. And with this post, you can be guided.

Today is the right time to again exercise our rights as a Filipino. Candidates have already introduced themselves. You roughly have the ideas who tells the truth and who's giving the lies. Your today and your future depends on these officers who will take the seat in the senate, municipal office and the house. Vote buying may feed you today or in a week, but remember you will live in 3 to 6 years while the people you voted is in the seat. Remember, corruption kills Filipino people. So think! Will you be still alive 3 or 6 years from now?

Vote wisely Filipinos!

Suffrage is the right to vote. With over 54 million voters, the Philippines has long been a country known for promoting this right of every Filipino citizen. With a relatively simple process of registration (but a bit time consuming) thru the Commission on Election (COMELEC) post, known as biometrics registration, anyone who is at least 18 years of age will have that freedom to choose the candidate he or she wishes to lead the country over the next 3 to 6 years. In the national level, these candidates will hold the offices of the President, Vice President and Senators, among others.


On the Photos: Ad Banner of National Election Candidates (posted randomly)










So now, the big question is:

Who will you vote?


Ask this to the Filipinos and they will give you varying, contradicting, bias, surprising and sometimes offending answers. There are a few in-depth reasons for this. For one, polls will tell that Filipinos will always have a divided vision towards choosing the next political leader of the land primarily due to decades-old political allies and rivalries. For two, this could be highly attributed to the high loyalty of the masses to a certain political personality or family. It goes without saying that if a politician is from your town or city, your vote will automatically goes to him/her. For three, it is all about dirty politics.

Philippines politics is not at all new to the world. Once known as a corrupt country, voting in this country is tainted with malice, unfairness and undeniably violence in some areas. Years before election, campaigns begin to crawl thru the traditional word-of-mouth strategy. If the barangay leader is an ally of a politician with this intention to run for office in the coming year, there would be obvious signs his already campaigning for that guy. One of the obvious proof are those giveaways during Christmas or New Year breaks such as calendars and gift baskets with greetings from a politician.

Three months before the Election Day, the turn of events in the Philippine political system is happening in a completely bizarre way. And this blog is about to expose to you the deeper truth behind Philippine politics...and you better listen.

Pre-Campaign Period
The television industry is the biggest screen of the Philippines political system. This is where politics is shown as it happens, where it happens. Before February 9, the start of the campaign period for the national post, you will see infomercials of people-to-run for office. Well, that’s actually not at all a strange motion picture to witness. It is the norm of the political business in this country. To the tune of popular jingles, direct endorsements by a showbiz personality, and curated presentations of one’s significant accomplishments; these are what characterized a typical political TV advertisement. Many politicians introduce themselves to the public this way - which according to the rule of law is “not a form of campaigning”. From about a hundred thousand to millions of budget, you will be aired in Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao thru the national television channels days before official campaign period begins.


On the Photos: Ad Banner of National Election Candidates (posted randomly)




Campaign Period – February 9 to March 9
Social Weather Station (SWS) and Pulse Asia; these two are the top visionaries of polls and surveys in the country over the past decades. Almost every two weeks, there is this data release publicly revealing who’s leading and who’s trailing. The basic question of “If election will be held today, who are you going to vote?” results into a mountain of confidence for the winning candidate and disappointment for the loosing ones. But that is just the crust of the richly-flavored reports after reports. The very core of statistics’ influence to the voting public as well as to the running-for-office politicians pops out a few weeks before the big day. There is something red hot spicy stuff going on in the town – a sauce flavor which for some is even better to taste than that sweet and refreshing blend of democracy.

There arise a period where politicians hate each other to the fullest level.

In front of supporters, even bashers, one will speak something spicy against the other candidate – to the point where it could really affect the next result of the polls. It is not just about saying “I am better than him/her”. That is still sweet to hear actually. What you’ll hear is like this: “That da#$@>! candidate will do nothing but induce harm to the people of this country”. Like in most countries, this is what they call “adding spice to the menu”. In a political rally, statement like that is in fact something pleasing to hear for many. You’ll hear applause, cheers, loud voices, echoes and sounds akin to the approval of that spicy throw of words against somebody. You know for sure where this spicy exchange of words is heading on. The so-called “mudslinging” just started. You throw me mud, I’ll throw you dang.

2016 Presidential Race - How is it going?
There are five political icons running for presidency in the Philippines today. They are Rodrigo Duterte, Jejomar Binay, Mar Roxas, Grace Poe and Miriam Defensor Santiago. You probably know who’s leading the surveys right now, do you? The exciting world of political campaigning tells the Philippine nation these two big things: First, who really my candidate is? Second, who really are we Filipino voters?

I watched the last two Presidential debates aired by two of the top TV stations in the country. The debates are intense but at the same time informative, useful and empowering. The latest Vice Presidential debates sounds the same. The atmosphere is intensely spicy - war of words.

It is like exposing dirty secrets after dirty secrets. That candidate who says “I’m better” gets the support of the people. That who falls victim of accusations, amazingly, sometimes gets the sympathy. There’s been a long debate of who’s really better: that who’s charismatic (karisma sa masa) or that who’s smart. Believe it or not, charismatic candidates oftentimes get the most support from the masses. If you would recall some of the slogans like “Erap para sa mahihirap” (Erap for the poor) and “Kung walang kurap, walang mahirap” (if there is no corrupt, there’ll be no poor), those are like campaigns blended with charisma – which both turns good in a way for the running candidate. They got elected in office.

Yes, that is how complicated matters are in the Philippines presidential race today. Voters see and hear tons and tons of bad news from almost every medium of communication – television, radio, newspaper, social media, internet, ad banners, etc. This is the norm and it happens, on a daily basis. Best of luck candidates!


On the Photos: Ad Banner of National Election Candidates (posted randomly)






What about violence???
Fortunately, each candidate in the national post is well-guarded not only by their private security personnel but also by the Philippines armed forces - PNP and AFP – during the entire campaign period. But the alarming situation happens in the local politics. Election-related violence is rampant in this country and it appears to be just a common thing year after year. From death threats to ambush, there is news to fly across the nation during the campaign days, despite of gun ban. And please read this line again: Killings of political candidates happen in the Philippines.

May 9 – Election Day
Weeks before the Election Day, you can see color-coded shirts in many political rallies everywhere in the country. Yellow, blue, red; these are the trending colors also serving as brands of each political party. Faces, names and tag lines; these info of course won’t be removed from those shirts, not even on banners. Wrist bands, towels, head caps, vests, tarpaulins, pamphlets, stickers; these things are everywhere during the Election Day. Vote buying? There is and it is up to you to find out how much.

It is the digital era of election in the Philippines. With the use of machines that count votes with efficiency far beyond the offer of the rusty-old manual system, voting in the country has significantly changed. Those countless Manila papers, pentel pens, ball pens, canvass sheets, black boards and yellow-painted ballot boxes, these election paraphernalia are nearly gone and were already replaced by automatic counting machines. It takes decades before Philippines becomes this systematic in terms of its election process, however, there is still something wrong going on along the way. What is it? Many don’t believe in the machine-based system’s accuracy. Days after the official election result is out, courts are starting to become busy receiving complaints attributed to “failure of election” on a town or city. They call it “dagdag-bawas” (or add-subtract) scheme. This is the accusation one will throw against the officiating party, usually the COMELEC officers, if not against his/her opponent who reigns victorious. Even three years after the election, you will still hear news about the incumbent official being disqualified by the COMELEC.

What are we expecting this year?
Every vote counts, of course. From the poorest and to the wealthiest Filipino, who ever he or she is, his/her vote will be counted. Clean election? Maybe. Fair election? Could be. With these issues of vote buying, violence, premature campaigning and mudslinging, could you say that the Philippine election system is that fair and clean today? Democratic? That’s what they say.

Over the past three or four months, I saw, hear and felt the voices of candidates, particularly those of the presidential and vice presidential candidates, in the national television. I’m afraid this is yet again another politics that would not save us all. Yes, some maybe saved from intense poverty and crimes, but not all. Some maybe served better on their health and financial needs, but not all. Some may have better lives, but not all. With over 100 million people, I’m afraid not all of us will see a better and brighter future, again. But I’m not afraid to say this at all: Change for the better will happen if Filipinos would elect that right candidate this time, again.

The "Daang Matuwid" (straight path), frankly speaking, did big changes to this country. I did not vote for President Noynoy Aquino but I like many of what he did to this country. Like any other president or politicians-in-office, he's just a human and six years is not enough to change a rusty country into a well-polished Pearl of the Orient Seas. The hope for a better and brighter Philippines lies in the hands of the next chief leader, definitely.

Good track record? It matters but not that much. Years of experience in office? It matters but not that big. Political will, I agree that it will do good instead of harms. Honestly, there is one thing that is more important for me beyond all these candidate’s features. That is:

People’s smart exercise of their right to vote.

That would save us all, no doubt.



About this Post
This post is for information campaign purposes only and has no any intention of promoting candidates, even demoting them. Information especially photos are for presentation purposes only. They were captured from public places and were uploaded in this blog to serve their sole purpose – deliver information. The author just expresses his thoughts about the truths behind the Philippine political system being a citizen of the country. If you find any misleading, bias, offending or unfair words, statements or opinions in this post, please contact the author. He is willing to take out information of that nature and express his apologies, if necessary.

Comments

Most-Read Posts of the Month

“I Love Baguio City” - My Travel Story in the Summer Capital of the Philippines

The Strawberry Farm, Burnham Park, Mines View Park, the Mansion, Wright Park, Lourdes Grotto, and Session Road; these are among of the popular landmarks in the more commonly known “Summer Capital of the Philippines” – Baguio City. Why so? Well, the temperature here seldom exceeds 26 degree centigrade. During the cold season of December to February, the temperature falls down to even below 10 degree centigrade. The record low temperature was 6.3 degree and that was on January 18, 1961.

How to Travel to Baguio City?
Going to this cold city in the mountainous province of Benguet, Philippines is a six to seven hours travel by passenger utility bus from Manila. Starting from EDSA, traversing the NLEX, entering SCTEX, exiting the province of Tarlac and going through the neighbouring provinces of Pangasinan and La Union, and then exploring the zigzag road of either the Marcos Highway, the Kennon Road or the Naguilian Road, the coldest place in the Philippines will be reached. Baguio is about 2…

"Business as Usual" as the Filipinos Define It (Vulcanizing Shop, Sari-Sari Store, Bakery) – Part 1

I asked the shop owner about these old unused tires on what are they doing with it. The Vulcanizing shop owners says, “Oh, someone will pick up those tires and pay us 5 or 10 pesos each. Sometimes they just take it for free”.


Vulcanizing Shop - A Classic Example of Filipino Business
You’ve most probably seen and been into a local, typical vulcanizing shop like this one in the photo. The business concept is very simple. Here’s a customer with his flat or deflated tire and the vulcanizing boy will repair it using a rubber compound patch, a heating tool, and an air pump. If it’s a regular car or van tire, repairing one may only take 10 minutes the cost of which is around 30 to 60 pesos. If it’s a tire from a truck or bus, it could be around 30 minutes and the repair would cost the vehicle owner around 100 to 150 pesos.

Here’s the thing. A shop like this one could potentially earn a revenue of 1000 up to 2000 per day just by repairing a flat tire. Why? Well, with thousands of vehicles like j…

Filipinos! Here is My Free Education Advocacy that I Want You to Know

In the Philippines, we often hear this statement from the Filipinos about education:


“Hindi hadlang ang kahirapan para makatapos ng pag-aaral.” Poverty is not a hindrance to finish education.
I completely disagree! Allow me to explain my side.





Millions of Filipinos are unable to step highschool and even college because of the hardships in life we have in our country. Many are poor and therefore cannot afford the cost of education in the Philippines. If paying 5,000 to 20,000 pesos per semester in a Philippine college is already tough, then how about more the daily baon, school projects, transportation allowance, boarding house, and extra expenses?


Wake up! This is the truth. That Filipino statement with all respect, if I were you, forget it. Accept the fact that you cannot just earn your education in the Philippines because you are poor.

This is not an insult to anyone. I am from a poor family but I was able to complete a college degree despite of that. If you really want to find a solution…

Who are These OFWs (Overseas Filipino Workers) and Why are They the Modern Heroes of the Philippines

At the turn of the millennium, the Philippine government launches this campaign program calling the overseas Filipino workers or OFWs as “Mga Bagong Bayani ng Bayan” (Modern Heroes of the Nation). From then onwards, different organizations established programs giving awards and recognitions to selected OFWs who did a remarkable contribution or action to their family, friends, work or in general, to the country.


OFW ka ba?Bakit?Eh kasi dating mo pa lang, mayaman ka na. Boom! 
(Are you an OFW? Why? Because with just the way look, it seems that you’re rich. Boom!)

My Cousin Dado as an OFW in South Korea 

At present, OFWs around the world are estimated to be around 12 – 14 million. This is approximately 10 – 12 percent of the Philippines total population. These OFWs are distributed on many countries all over the globe majority of whom are in Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Japan, Singapore, Hongkong, Taiwan, South Korea, and Italy. Immigrant workers in the United States, Australia and Eu…

MONTEMARIA

Catholicism from another perspective – this is how I understand the pilgrimage site of MonteMaria in Batangas City, Philippines. It was a huge site development project with the 96-meter tall Mary, Mother of All Asia statue as the centerpiece. You have to see it for yourself to believe!

What (not Who) is MONTEMARIA? Just for clarity, MONTEMARIA is the name of the 130-hectare township or development site project. Also, Montemaria is a place in Batangas City to which the site more likely is named after. The statue or monument or tower is called "Mother of All Asia - Tower of Peace". You may simply call it Tower of Mary or Statue of Mary. The surrounding place meanwhile is known as the Mother of All Asia Shrine.

Holy Week in the Philippines
We visited this place during the Holy Week of 2018. During this week, many Filipino Catholics are visiting religious places which is part of what they call "Visita Iglesia". It is not uncommon for a pilgrimage site like the MonteMaria…

BAYANIHAN – Filipinos’ Last and Only Hope in Beating the Odds of Times

Illegal drugs, criminality, corruption in the government – these are the evil things killing the Filipino people for many decades. The government and its armed forces alone are not enough to cure the bleeding wound of our generation. The hope of a better Philippines will come from us – the people.

As a Filipino, what really went wrong with us? Why are we living in this society full of hatred, bias, inequality, and divisiveness?


This blog is meant to uncover the truth behind a distinct Filipino culture that got hidden in the dark for decades - BAYANIHAN. I had been blogging for about a decade and I have shared a lot of the stories telling why Filipinos are divided in terms of political and religious beliefs, ignorant in the many aspects of the society, denied of our rights and privileges over many things, and betrayed by a few elites running the political and economic systems of the land. It could be only two things: we were being fooled yet we are not aware of it or we were fooling o…

What Filipinos Truly Miss About the Philippines

Filipinos are known to have strong family ties. That despite of the fact that we have to leave our families and friends behind to work somewhere far, we still choose to pay a visit them whenever the time allows. In a way, these fiesta tradition, Christmas holidays, holy week, election day, and other occasion days are what brings Filipinos together. During these days, bus terminals, seaports, and airports are full of Filipinos queuing up for their rides heading home.

It’s in a Filipino wish list - to go back home no matter what.

When I got my first job in the city back in 2005, there’s always this feeling that I wanted to go back in my home province and see how things go on there. You know that feeling of missing home and you’re too far away. You really need patience, more of it. Back then, I want to see my parents, my friends, and relatives whom I had grown up with. I want to see the green environment, that place that made me a person that I am today. Since then, I tried making ways o…

Filipinos Very Own Jeepney is in Manila and Everywhere in the Philippines

Jeepney symbolizes the culture of the Philippines. This is the primary means of transportation of the Filipino people. This vehicle can be seen anywhere in the country. There is no city, town or barangay that has no jeepneys to represent them. Jeepney is the life of the people in the Philippines.

On the Photo: Jeepney Blessing Ceremony
Children and adults in this photo are excited about the blessing of this new jeepney. Coins were thrown on top of the jeepney and they scrambled for it. For the jeepney owner, this is the start of a new day, a new business venture. Jeepney like this one, which has a stainless body costs around P300,000 to Php400,000 and is mainly used as a passenger utility vehicle.


How many jeepneys can you see here?


How about here?

Riding a Jeepney - How it Feels to be in It
Riding on the jeepney might not be that comfortable and convenient to all. If you are tall, you have no other choice but to bend your neck a little. If you are fat, worst case that the driver will charg…

Great Reasons Why You Should be Proud to be Pinoy Today

Yes, we live in a poor country. We walk up and sleep in a country with high unemployment rate, low quality of life, high crime incidence, rampant corruption in the government, unsolved traffic issues, high poverty and so on and so forth. We are residing in a country where there are New People’s Army, Moro Islamic Liberation Front, Abu Sayyaf Group and plenty of other leftists doing harm to the nation’s freedom and sovereignty. Many of our rivers, oceans and lands are totally polluted – some are dead. Our streets are flooded with criminals, kidnappers, snatchers, drug addicts, drug pushers and tons of other bad elements invading our liberty. In remote areas around the country, there are children walking barefoot, on their empty stomach and with unconditioned mind and body just to taste the education which their parents were forced to believe that “poverty is not a hindrance to education” – but is not. We experience over and over again the fury of strong typhoons leaving us billion-wort…

Talk to Us

Name

Email *

Message *