GLANCING at the political landscape, the green light flashes as if to signal that the barangay elections will push through this coming May 14. The fact is that those familiar faces eyeing for barangay positions, this early, are seen paying a visit to their benefactors to collect advances not only to promote their own ambition but more importantly to: advance the political agenda of their Godfathers who are seeking local positions, either, as: reelectionists, returnees after a three-year furlough, or new suitors, or incumbents running for a higher or lower position because of legal restrictions to seek re-election.
That is the beauty of statutory term limitations because by then gold and goons cannot stop the riddance of misfits in public service. If only such prohibition could translate into the empowerment of able, pro-people and progressive-oriented successors then the aspiration for a self-sufficient and peaceful Philippine society will hopefully see the proverbial light at the end of the tunnel. Otherwise, the recycling of incompetence and self-aggrandizement in public office will prolong, if not institutionalize the undeserved anguish of the governed.
Notwithstanding, these debilitating vices of traditional politics, there are moments when our electorate dutifully rise up to the occasion to show their patriotism and social responsibility by rallying behind a candidate who does have the resources to buy votes. The election of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte is indeed such shining moment. Indeed, the Filipino people in their sovereign capacity correctly put their trust in him on the basis alone of his sacred pledge to end rising criminalities, corruption and widespread poverty, among others. And, true enough, upon assumption into office, President Duterte anchored the cornerstone of his governance on: uncompromising law enforcement, particularly against drug offenders; weeding out of corrupt bureaucrats; massive construction of public infrastructures, particularly nationwide road networks and educational facilities. When completed, these projects will inter-connect our major Islands to facilitate the circulation of agricultural and industrial goods, promote local tourism not to mention the enhancement of our educational system through quality education and accommodation of growing enrollees in state colleges and universities. Admittedly these public investments will generate employment and bring income to our labor sector.
Yet, of equal, if not greater, significance on the victory of President Duterte is his conviction that, in the final analysis, the success of his governance hinges on the indispensable level of competence, integrity and dedication exemplified by the barangay leadership in effectuating the provisions of our Local Government Code (LGC). “As the basic political unit, the barangay serves as the primary planning and implementing unit of government policies, plans, programs, projects, and activities in the community, and as a forum wherein the collective views of the people may be expressed, crystallized and considered, and where disputes may be amicably settled.”
While the desired leadership qualities are waiting to be tapped to effectively concretized the above quoted role of barangays in nation building, it is not that easy to procure their ascendancy. But who knows, for once more, our barangay folks will set aside the wickedness of traditional politics and vote for qualified candidates with track records of socio-civic mindedness. And that compelling moment to shine again is during the watch of President Rodrigo Duterte. Should that happen, change is just a whisper away.
P.S. Happy 43th Anniversary of Mr. and Mrs. Purok 5 and 6 of Sta. Monica, San Simon. The traditional ballroom on February 17 will cap the celebration.