LETTERS FROM DAVAO
By Jun Ledesma
THE Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration has announced that the La Nina phenomenon has started. This means most of Luzon, Visayas, and the National Capital Region will experience above normal rainfall conditions that will last up to the 1st quarter of 2022.
Another unusual condition has started to happen in the country. Motherhood statements from candidates in the coming 2022 elections have started to harangue the public in all media platforms. It started with Manny Pacquiao promising he will provide free housing units to all the homeless. I watched Kiko Pangilinan on CNN pledging to redeem the nation from the quagmire of poverty but offering no solutions. Leni Robredo warns of another six years of Duterte administration and a Marcos comeback and gives us a glimpse of her economic policy which offers nothing but goosebumps not out of euphoria but fear.
Isko Moreno joins Pacquiao in the realm of the extraordinary or beyond belief. He wants to cut taxes and the price of fuel by 50 percent! Bongbong Marcos is quite conservative but remains to be the principal staple of his adversaries who had been heaping all the scurrilous issues against his father who is now six feet under. “Son of the dictator”, the propaganda machines scream but the people are not listening. Perceived to be the running mate of Davao City Mayor Inday Sara Duterte who had consistently topped the presidential surveys, BBM appeared to be the beneficiary of Sara’s following. Isko is being branded a communist stooge by the Yellow or the “Dilawans” when in truth these “Finks” are mostly comrades of the leftists. Ping Lacson underlines the Philippines indebtedness but cannot reconcile the billions of pesos spent on the "BUILD, BUILB, BUILD" program and to fight the pandemic.
Bato is a non-issue. He is a classic example of the famous quote “more talk, more mistakes; less talk, fewer mistakes; no talk, no mistakes.
At the close of filing of Certificates of Candidacy, we see 97 Presidential aspirants. If that is not incredible think of these. There are 270 groups of varied political persuasions which are gunning for the 63 congressional seats. 176 individuals are aspiring to be one of the 12 senators and we see some recycled names in the slate of the five known presidential aspirants. So many and yet, ironically, there are not much to choose from.
After November 15 the battle lines are drawn. This early, the main protagonists are Bongbong Marcos and Leni Robredo. It will be a rematch to reaffirm who among the two is the true and legitimate vice president who was elected by the people in 2016 polls and not by Smartmatic. That verdict had been shrouded by doubt and the protracted decision of the Supreme Court. Early surveys show BBM is leading the surveys. Leni’s camp which has a retinue of propagandists, that includes Omidyar’s Rappler tried vainly to upstage BBM early lead, have tried everything by extrapolating crowd estimates and unabashedly inputting Arabic names in its online surveys to add numbers to their patron. The shameless machination reveals the early attempt at twisting facts to favor their protege. Shame.
Given these early scenarios, one need not wait for November 15. Already you can place your bets.
About the Columnist
Mr. Jun Ledesma is a community journalist who writes from Davao City and comments from the perspective of a Mindanaoan.