Monday, June 14, 2021

Ombion: War of shadows, battle of currents


ARE just as effective in scaring people, making others wonder, and therefore confuse them as to what may happen next and what they should be doing.

While most of us are busy confronting the exasperating pandemic and its debilitating impact, others cannot just hold their punches from picking on 2022 national elections.

Though busy in my primary concerns, myself has been trying to do some serious analytics on 2022 elections and the scenarios it is shaping locally because until now, the readable manifestations in the national and local levels are not enough and still vague, and I have to prepare to position my works and official engagements with the right trajectory.

In short, the standard factors of the upcoming events remain fluid and in some cases, the signals are even more confusing.

Although the presidential daughter and mayor of Davao City Sara Duterte’s name has been tossed up for presidency, there is no certainty nor admission about it from Sarah herself, nor from any of the family members nor from the ruling party officials.

As to who will the opposition field is as vague as who the ruling administration bets would be.

Senator Manny Pacquaio’s name though has been dragged and hyped as an opposition bet, because of his closeness to the US, and due to his recent rants against China’s occupation of the West Philippine Sea, which indirectly criticized the pro-China stand of President Rodrigo Duterte.

In local politics, everything too is fluid, and even slippery like a waxed floor.

Former Third District congressman, perceived gambling mogul, and kingmaker has transferred his voting registration from Victorias to Bacolod, and the so-called MMA (Money Muscle Areglo) politicians and partisans backing him have been hyping and bragging that he will challenge Bacolod Mayor Bing Leonardia to a battle royale. But Albee has refused to deny or affirm the challenge.

Looks like kingmakers, players, partisans, and bogeymen are playing “war of shadows” and “battle of currents” while voters and stakeholders are confused.

Looks like the great Confucius is at work, confusing anyone who can’t decipher the wisdom of his teachings. Or are the locals just waiting for the audible and convincing twist from the national players and international benefactors?

Whatever and whenever the blurring smokes would be cleared, there are few scenarios I am quite certain to surface and shape out from the residues of the ongoing war and battles.

One, the battle for presidentiable and vice presidentiable will be a battle between US and China interests. If Sara Duterte gets the final blessings of President Duterte, she will be perceived as pro-China, and the challenger, whether Pacquiao or whoever, will be viewed as the chosen one of the US.

With the escalating and sharpening “war of shadows” between the US and China in the south China sea, both will not take lightly the national elections in the Philippines in 2022, as the outcome could fortify the pro or con position of either.

Down the locals, the pro-US and pro-China players will make sure the battle in the LGUs will be given corresponding support, whatever is possible and socially acceptable.

Two, whether Albee runs or not in Bacolod mayoralty, chances are, Mayor Bing will continue his administration till 2025.

Bing may not match the perceived money, muscle, areglo politics, and provincial back up of Albee, but he will break and bring down Albee’s perceived political invincibility by his locally unparalleled political experience, administration and governance expertise, development track records, and tightly-knit machinery.

He still has the high trust rating from a wide array of Bacolodnon including the formidable base of CSOs and POs now in the City Development Council and Local Special Bodies, and no less, the sure support of either pro or against Duterte presidentiable bet of which he has both good ties. Unless Albee finds the ultimate antidote to Mayor Bing’s political immortality.

Three, the congressional post of the lone district of Bacolod will likely remain with incumbent Congressman Greg Gasataya, unless he makes major political mistakes in his decision-making and choices vis-a-vis 2022 elections.

Four, whoever comes out the winner of the provincial gubernatorial and vice gubernatorial race, will still be the same breed of landed elite leaders who will not reform the highly skewed economic and political structure of the province, and therefore keep the same -- impoverished and backward as ever.

Still, the war of shadows and battle of currents will continue beyond 2022 elections.


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