Your karikna occasionally appears on television as political analyst, offering insights on events and issues. Those who would see me on TV give an interesting feedback: “Naglaing ka ag-English.”
I am surprised because although I speak mostly in the native tongue, it is my sparse English that viewers notice. It is not the substance of my opinions that they remember but my facility of the foreign language. No more English then next time.
BARANGAY OFFICIALS are supposed to be non-partisan. Unless they resign or take a leave of absence, they are not supposed to campaign, much less use public resources, for any candidate or party.
The Department of Interior and Local Government perennially reminds barangay officials that their mandate provides that they remain neutral. Violators may be slapped with hefty penalties if caught participating in any partisan activity.
Unfortunately, such is not the reality in Philippine politics. Most barangay officials are the biggest rah-rah boys of candidates for public office. Worse, these community leaders become instrumental in vote-buying. This is very disturbing, dear karikna, because Comelec deputizes barangay officials to ensure the conduct of clean, honest, and credible elections.
Sad to say, I am not aware of any barangay official who has been prosecuted for actively supporting particular candidates.
“.gudevening sir!..ask q lng sir kung cnu ibo2to nyo for president?,I haven’t decided yet kze sir,.kuha lng po aq ng basis”
It was a message from Dennis Quines of Laoag City, one of my former students. I was both surprised and overwhelmed that he would ask me such question. Surprised because Dennis and I really never got to talk about anything beyond Logic, the course he took up under me; overwhelmed because Dennis is a first-time voter who is very carefully in assessing his choices, and I felt obliged to offer good advice.
Unfortunately, I cannot proclaim my bet to the public, although my friends already know who I am for. My public persona as journalist, political analyst, educator, and civil servant requires that I maintain a certain level of objectivity. Showing political color would be divisive, and people will either not listen to me anymore, or will begin to look at me with eyes of cynicism if I do so. Philippine Daily Inquirer’s Conrado de Quiros takes a different path in vigorously supporting and defending Noynoy. I will not follow his lead.
But I could tell Dennis the type of candidates I will not vote for, so he might want to go through a process of elimination. Continue reading “It’s down to two”