Elections in RP changed-A A +A
Saturday, May 8, 2010
DAGUPAN CITY -- Elections in the Philippines will never be the same again.
In the past, people attend to barangay rallies or caucuses of candidates to see and hear them in person lay down their plans and programs. They stay glued at their chairs listening to the speeches without expectation of material things to be distributed later.
It's different now.
Some of the barangay folks attend campaign sorties of competing candidates more to get campaign materials such as t-shirts, caps, folded fans, umbrellas.
In some areas in the province of Pangasinan, redemption coupons are pre-distributed to people (who are lucky enough to be included in the list) at the barangay where the rally/sortie will be conducted. The goods prepared can only be redeemed after the rally. Merienda (sandwiches and juices) in tetra pack are also distributed to those who attended the rally.
Observers comment that there is no calamity yet "relief goods" abound. These are also distributed or delivered to pre-listed people.
The plastic bags usually contain a kilo of rice, noodles and sardines.
Accordingly, in Binmaley, just like in the 2007 elections, some local candidates allegedly distribute house-to-house small plastic basin containing bagoong and patis.
In Dagupan City, supporters of a candidate who went to PNR Site-Mayombo recently to distribute some campaign give-aways were allegedly mobbed by waiting and very eager residents causing them to retreat for their own protection.
The night before the election day is a sleepless night as some residents really stay awake and alert for the last minute pakurong or gifts (in cash or in kind) from the candidates.