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Who to vote for

 

cardie roque that's the spirit

ELECTION is a key democratic exercise because through it, the people choose who to entrust their power ad resources, and thus, the future of the country and the succeeding generations.

Do we, as a people, engage in this very important democratic exercise with knowledge and appreciation of, as well as commitment to, its essence and value?

When one considers the general makeup of electoral campaign in our country, there appears to be no substantial bases for the people’s decision on who to vote for both national and local executive and legislative posts.

Except for the rare occasions where senatorial candidates engage in debate or debate-like discussion of issues and the few media features on their background and qualifications, the people generally not provided sufficient information that should shape their decision during elections.

In general, the elections in our country, and thus the electoral campaigns, are directed towards making the people recall the candidates’ names when it is time for them to cast their votes.

The case of campaign posters illustrates the general makeup of electoral campaign in the Philippines. Such posters contain the photo, name and sought position of a candidate. This is clearly a tool for voters to remember or recall the names of the candidates.

Posters are the key campaign weapon of most candidates for both national and local elective government posts.

While some go to the extent of distributing campaign pamphlets, it is interesting to find out how many Filipinos read and use the same in making election decisions.

Do Filipinos really choose the “right” persons for the elective national and local government positions?

Do we consider the candidates’ qualifications vis-à-vis the government jobs that they want to occupy?

Do we vote for governors and mayors who possess the leadership and management skills, knowledge and experience? As government executives, they have to be both leaders and managers for them to be effective in their roles.

Do we vote for vice governors, vice mayors, members of Sangguniang Panlalawigan, Panlungsod and Bayan, who possess the skills, knowledge and experience in crafting local ordinances, including the provincial, city and municipal budgets?

Do we vote for our government leaders because their names are what we remember during elections? Do we vote for them because they were endorsed by a celebrity or someone we know even if we have not ascertained whether they can do the jobs that they are “applying” for?

At the end of the day, we get the government leaders that we deserve and who we deserve are defined by what made us vote for them.

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