Bagong Simula sa Bayan ni Juan

Breaking News

For other news and information, scroll the links found on the sidebar. Links to other relevant sites and media blogs are located on the lower right portion. - RAFS76

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Eleksyon 2007: The aftermath

Excuse the not-so-prompt blog about the elections... =)

Ok, let's see. Our baguio-based media coordinators Frank Cimatu and EV Espiritu of PDI-North Luzon were assigned to cover the area of ABRA, an election hotspot in the North, meaning a-not-so-safe place to be... Hey guys, hope you came back to Baguio unscathed...

On the other hand, it feels a bit weird that the areas of our birthday celebrants happen to be in the limelight. Eastern Samar and Maguindanao and Lanao...

In Eastern Samar where Roy Calvo of dyES-Radyo ng Bayan is the area media coordinator, news reports say that a vigil vs fraud in Eastern Samar has taken place last May 18 due to reports that alleged irregularities in the canvassing of votes were taking place. "For the first time in the history of elections in this province, the people showed how they value their votes." Click the link shown above for further details.

In Maguindanao [Edwin Fernandez of dxMS and dxOL - area of responsibility, so to speak =) ], earlier reports said that a surprising 12-0 votes in favor of Team Unity senatorial candidates took place. This prompted a lot of speculations, the most serious of which was that NO ELECTIONS actually took place in the area and that the results have long been "manipulated" even prior the election proper last May 14. A more elaborate report/article on election irregularities was published in PDI last May 18 by Donna Pazibugan and Norman Bordadora, with the "No Voting in Maguindanao" as the "banner report". Click the link to read the story.
Said article stated:

"According to the alleged plot as detailed by Bantay Boto, massive cheating will be committed in the provinces of Ilocos Sur, Pampanga, Camarines Norte, Cebu, Bohol, Leyte, Eastern Samar, Lanao del Norte, Davao del Sur, Lanao del Sur, Maguindanao and Shariff Kabunsuan.

The regions supposedly identified for fraud operations were Central Visayas, Davao, Caraga and Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.

The identified areas, according to the plan, have more than 14.7
million registered voters."

I find this quite uncanny since most of the areas identified for commission of "election fraud" were pilot areas under the UNFPA 6th Country Programme in the Philipppines. In case you forgot, these areas were said to be among the poorest provinces in the country, where maternal mortality is high and where the PGR (Population Growth Rate) is high, like in Bohol wherein theirs is higher than that of the national PGR.

The selection of the areas on the basis of the high number of registered voters validates the presumption that in highly populated areas (with a correspondingly high number of registered voters), most people live below the poverty line. And instead of interventions to address reproductive health issues and population concerns, these areas are targetted for the commission of election fraud. To put into "power" those who will further bury this country to the ground. Talk about adding insult to injury!

It is obvious and anyone who fails to see that are just plain insane. Most of those areas are poor, and isn't it almost a cliche' that ARMM is the place where all those massive cheating took place in 2004 elections? And yup yup yup, ARMM is also the place where the poorest areas are. Indeed, these areas are the most vulnerable... You do the math.

In areas where fraud, deception, and lies are most likely taking place, the room for growth and development from their local government is an unlikely possibility. At any rate, there are signs of hope like that reported in Eastern Samar where the locals have the "spirit of EDSA" in them... and the partial tally of votes where Senators from the GO (Genuine Opposition) are leading. Or that of the priest winning as Governor in Pampanga against two (2) strong contenders - Pinedas and the Lapids (I just wonder if he implements the RH Code already passed in that city... abangan!)... the loss of Ali Atienza in Manila, where the basic violations of women's right and RH concerns have taken place during the reign of his father Mayor Lito Atienza. And of course, the loss of Manny Pacquiao, our nation's boxing hero, to incumbent Darlene Custodio, an outspoken oppositor of the administration, in the congressional race for South Cotabato and the poor performance of actors Richard Gomez and Cesar Montano in the senatorial race. These results show that we do have a "discerning public" who vote not based on popularity but based on performance, capability and integrity.

We have to keep the faith... we have to keep believing that there is hope for our country.