May 24
PALITIX by Butch Macaro  |  Posted in Articles  |  on Thu, May 24, 2007

IT’S ALL OVER NOW! Although there are still some places where ballots had not been counted yet, but the general consensus of the great majority of the electoral have been heard! Like a chorus in unison, shouting thunderously for a CHANGE…a MAKE OVER.

Last May 14, 2007, I followed the suggestion of an editorial that we must vote wisely as it is our duty as citizens of the country, and after voting wisely to go back home, rest and sleep. Return to the polling place in the early evening to make sure our votes are counted correctly. So I obeyed!

To my surprise, some precincts have already finished counting the votes as early as 6:30 in the evening, the senatorial candidates of the opposition was in the lead, about six of them. The local candidates were also leading the score. I heaved a sigh of satisfaction!

The electoral has found its voice. I sincerely feel they have learned to make use of their right of suffrage and let their voices heard. I lingered for a while since some precinct officials are still holding a big number of unread ballots. Now I can go back home and sleep soundly, although some of the local candidates I voted for are still trailing in the total score. The will of the people predominated, overwhelmingly!

Richard Gomez and Cesar Montano, two popular personalities of show business, lost their bids as senators. Jestoni Alarcon did not make it as Congressman of Rizal; Daniel Fernando as Vice-Governor of Bulacan and Christopher de Leon as Vice-Governor of Batangas where Vilma Santos, the current Mayor of Lipa City is the new Governor. Mark Lapid lost to a priest, father Ed Panlillo who is the new governor of Pampanga.

But on the brighter side, Herbert Bautista was re-elected Vice Mayor of Quezon City; Aiko Melendez as councilor in her district and Alma Moreno as councilor of Paranaque, where Anjo Yllana lost his Vice mayoralty bid. Isko Moreno is the new Vice Mayor of Manila and Yul Servo is the winning candidate as councilor in Manila’s third district.

In the early part of the campaign period, Yul and I were surprised to meet at a birthday party of a neighbor in Arlegui. Yul was running for councilor and I told him I am a resident of the area, and therefore a voter. I assured him I will help in his campaign.

On election day, I even prepared a list of opposition senatorial candidates which I distributed to the voters in the nearby polling places. Majority of the opposition candidates won in the election. It was the first time I voted straight for the opposition.

In my mind, Isko Moreno was a surprise winner. For three terms, a total of nine years, Isko was a councilor from the 1st district of Manila. I personally wanted him to win, considering the dedication and hard work he showed for nine years of serving his constituents. Everybody knows who Isko was before he joined politics. He grew up in a depressed area of Tondo, sold newspaper as a boy, was a scavenger and tricycle driver for sometime until he was discovered for the movies. He made several movies which changed his life style greatly, and being popular in their area, some people urged him to join politics which he did and made it. While serving his third term as councilor, he opted to continue his studies and now he is in his third year law proper. I really think this is a feat only few people can achieve.

I personally admire his dedication to fight for change and improvement. Isko is a role model for the youth. But politics play a dirty game, always. Very few people realized and appreciated his desire to improve himself, and to serve. In fact two weeks before the election, his photo wearing a white brief appeared in some tabloids. Perhaps his political opponents did it on purpose to tarnish his reputation. On the contrary, I believe it helped him greatly in winning the sympathy of the voters. Isko never denied he made sexy movies before, but will this affect his desire to perform as a politician? Three days before the election and during the rally in the vicinity, I had the chance for a short talk with Isko, rather Vice Mayor Isko Moreno, for this article. He gladly obliged. But I changed my mind and decided to write this article after the election. I had a feeling Isko will make it and it will be more fitting if I do it after him winning the election. It was one of my best decisions.

Two senatorial candidates lost and even those who promised to scratch the EVAT for films lost the bid too, it is improbable therefore that the movie industry will experience laxity in paying the heavy taxes on raw materials Although three senators from the movies are still in the senate, I still feel hopeful that heavy taxes on films will be reduced. Senators Bong Revilla, Lito Lapid and Jinggoy estrada must now move heaven and earth to craft legislation that will prove beneficial to the beleaguered local film industry. With the entrance of new senators like Loren Legarda, Chiz Escudero and Manny Villar who are identified sympathizers of the movie industry, I hope they can do something for a change. It will merit hopefully the improvement of film output this season. More movies will be produced and more workers will earn their keeps. Let’s keep our fingers crossed.

With the new set of legislators added, who among them will lift a finger to help revive the almost dying film industry? After all, some of them if not all of them employed people from the industry in promo and commercials ads. The movie is a good source of entertainment and taxes, so do something to revive the ailing film industry.

With the result of the recent election, the people have expressed their desire for a chance in political atmosphere. Although there are some groups disgruntled over the result, I hope it will not result in bloodshed. I hope the losing candidates will accept defeat and will exit graciously for the deserving winners to perform for the good of the majority.

I salute the teachers who did their job well with dignity and fought undaunted for what is right. I grieve for some teachers who sold their souls “for a few pieces of silver”, submitting to the whims of those who are in power. My deepest sympathy goes for those who lost their lives for the truth and those who were victimized by tyrannical traditional politicians.

In the last election, I can see a thin light of hope for a renewed political atmosphere in the country. I fervently pray that in the near future, a new set of dedicated local executives and national legislators will enter public servce to protect the interest of the greater majority of our countrymen. Then more work and employment will be created, food will be abundant, education will be improved, prices of prime commodities will be reduced… and peace and justice will be the main concern of everybody. The country is rich in its own resources. The sea is teeming with abundance; the land, if properly tilled, will produce enough food; the mountains will yield precious minerals and the forests will be our sources of food and wood. If this happened, time will come when Pilipinos in foreign lands will opt to return to their native land and be proud of their patrimony, live harmoniously in peace and satisfaction. A dream I think every wish to be realized.

My congratulations for all the winning candidates. My sympathy and advanced good luck wishes to the losers who will again try next time—or three years from now.