JUDGING from news reports and press releases, the just-concluded Barangay and SK elections were generally peaceful and orderly as compared to previous electoral exercises.
As usual, as is prevalent in 3l3dtions past, some incidents of vote buying, flying voters and missing names in precincts were recorded.
Overall, however, the Commission on Elections declared the elections as Mission Accomplished (as of presstime, 99.39 percent of the votes were already counted and winners proclaimed). It is now preparing for another important activity -the 2019 elections.
Gauging from the results, the political wannabes in the 2019 elections would bank on the good results of their pet candidates who have proven their winnability in the recently-concluded BSKe.
The culture of vote buying is obviously embedded in our collective psyche. In some areas, the vote buying cost rose to P3,000.00 per voter which used to be P300-P500 only in past elections. The ongoing rate surely indicates that succeeding electoral exercises command a minimum of P3,000.00 commensurate with the ever-increasing prices of basic commodities and oil prices.
Truly, it is expensive to run for public office nowadays. And how will the vote buyers recoup their investments? Your guess is as good as mine.
For them, public office is a lucrative source of income. To hell with the saying that the public office is a public trust. To the vote buyers, a public office translates to public cash!
A cursory look at the results in Mabalacat City Barangay elections discloses that in Dau, incumbent Barangay chair Dr. Oscar R. Aurelio was edged out by a scion of the late businessman Anthony Dee. His son, Derreck, proved his mettle over a seasoned politician.
Over at Barangay Tabun, reelectionist village chair Jerry Magsino defeated his rivals by a mile. At Barangay Cacutud, chairman Arnold
Reyes defeated a strong contender in the person of Rustico Garbo, a first timer in politics and an elder brother of Mayor Crisostomo C. Garbo.
In Barangay Poblacion, chairman Elmer "Totong" Mendiola maintained his post while the San Francisco chairman was edged out by Dobet Layson. San Joaquin has the comebacking Davidson David as the new chairman.
* * *
SM expands in the City of San Fernando. Today, May 18, 2018, another branch opens at Barangay Telabastagan with the roving and industrious
Bong Garcia as mall manager and Bernadette Bautista as assistant mall manager. The ever accommodating Junias Eusebio, AVP and regional operations manager has his roster growing.