Sunday, May 19, 2013

Only in Marinduque-2013 Election (A Moro-Moro)

Shotgun Proclamation of Gina Reyes as the Officially Elected Rpresentative of Congress - questioned by Lord Allan Velasco

I was advised by a couple of friends that as a Balikbayan, I should not get involved in the local politics in the Philippines. This advised I have always followed because getting involved in the local politics will get you in trouble specially if you run a business in your locality. But this 2013 mid year election is really interesting. I feel like I am watching a "moro-moro", a filipino dramatic play on the political activities and shenanigans of our Pinoy politicians. I just can not be silent anymore.

As a blogger and a citizen journalist, here's my post on the 2103 election in the Philippines, particulaly in my island province of Marinduque- my second home. Most of these observations are commentaries from FaceBook friends and what is already published in the Philippine Newspapers for the last week.

1. Election 2013 will be the remembered in the annals of Marinduque political history as the election most marred with corruption, vote buying, voter intimidation, confusion and intrigue. With a degree in Political Science and Public Administration, I find it intriguing and mind boggling how this election was conducted, from the filing of Certificate of Candidacy (COC) to the Proclamation of Winners (by Aida Hulen).

2. Did we have a valid and honest election? Despite the apparent euphoria generated in some circles by the independent and virtually unknown candidate Grace Poe topping the unofficial senatorial count, and by President B. S. Aquino III’s most rabid pro-population control candidates not making it at all,serious doubts are now being raised about the conduct of Monday’s election(By Francisco S. Tatad).

3. Philippines Named ‘Most Stupid Country to Elect a 20-Year OJT as a Senator’ by Time Magazine
The overwhelming victory of a self-professed on-the-job trainee-cum-Senator in the recently held election in the Philippines cemented the country’s fate,” wrote Time’s news director Marilou C. Martin.

She added, “Falling for the diversionary tactics of an inexperienced candidate that saw her steer the issue away from her credibility to her skin complexion to make herself look like the underdog; gave us no choice but to bestow such title to a country, who was destined for greatness before the elections.” “And yes, we intentionally all-capped the word stupid for added emphasis,” according to Martin. Time gave special attention to the country’s 11,789,643 registered voters (as of press time) who voted for Nancy Binay, as contributing to the country’s “overall stupidity rating index

4. That shotgun proclamation! by Eli Obligacion, Marinduque Rising

DepEd Superintendent Magdalena Lim reads the shotgun proclamation with three towns of Marinduque yet to transmit their COCs representing 40% of the votes. The helpless process server who was ordered to personally serve the Comelec en banc resolution stands on the side. That was the resolution affirming the cancellation of the COC/disqualification of Regina O. Reyes.

As of 7:00 pm May 15 when the Provincial Board of Canvassers (PBC) convened after a two-hour recess the election results in the municipalities of Mogpog, Sta. Cruz and Boac have been transmitted to the PBC. The certificates of canvass from the other three municipalities of Buenavista, Gasan and Torrijos that represents 40% of the votes have, however, not been transmitted to the PBC. This is so because of hardware malfunction in certain precincts in said municipalities.

5. Reyes proclamation in Marinduque Questioned by By Jofel Lancion, Maricar Cinco and Gerald Querubin Inquirer Southern Luzon

The regional head of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) in Mimaropa (Mindoro, Marinduque, Romblon, Palawan) will assume supervision over the canvassing of votes in Marinduque amid the controversial proclamation of the province’s governor, vice governor and lone district congressional representative on Wednesday. The most controversial candidate, Regina Ongsiako Reyes, has been disqualified by the Comelec en banc.

Danny Gapasin, counsel for Representative Lord Allan Jay Velasco, said Regina’s proclamation was “highly irregular and null and void from the very beginning.” He said the number of votes from three towns—Gasan, Buenavista and Torrijos— that had not been canvassed accounted for almost 40 percent of the total number of votes in the province. Marinduque has 129,954 registered voters.

Allegations of irregularities in canvassing in Marinduque cropped up when the provincial board of canvassers (PBOC), chaired by provincial election supervisor Edwin Villa, proclaimed as winners reelectionist Gov. Carmencita Reyes, her running mate Romulo Bacorro as vice governor, and Regina, Carmencita’s daughter, as Marinduque representative even though election returns from three of the six towns of the province had not been counted.

In the meantime, amidst this political drama, tourism is dead in Marinduque with the cancellation of air flights from Manila to Marinduque and back since Last May 10. The province of Marinduque is now back again to the Middle Ages. This political moro-moro could happen only in Marinduque! How long will it take for Marinduque to have an official Representative in Congress? That is my question?

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