Staring Defeat In The Face
This is a statement of fact.
The marriage of convenience (some say opportunism) cobbled together by the Filipina iron butterfly Gloria Macapagal Arroyo to stave off becoming a lame duck chief executive on her final year as President (with the suspected agenda of extending her stay in office) is breaking up.
Yes the administration has a standard bearer in the person of the former defense secretary Gilbert Teodoro, who jumped from the opposition National People’s Coalition of his taipan uncle Eduardo ’Danding’ Cojuangco and upend Lakas Kampi loyalist Bayani Fernando for the plum role of party headliner.
But the undeniable problem is despite his sterling political pedigree, academic readiness, and charismatic persona, Mr. Teodoro’s acceptability numbers have stagnated at a dismal 6 percentage points.
This is complicated by the uncharacteristic shortage of campaign funds for the PaLaKa slate down to the listed 12,000 or so party candidate at the district and local government levels.
Lakas-Kampi deputy executive director Reginald Velasco:
It (the emergency meeting of top party leaders on April 6) will be our final reckoning. Do we have the resources to support our local candidates not only in terms of funding but also in providing poll watchers and sample ballots on election day? Our claim to fame is our local machinery and without it, we will lose.
The Lakas-Kampi-CMD leaders had only recently realized the difficulties in handling a mammoth organization considering that the party had doubled in size since the 2007 elections.
All of them want the national candidate to visit their places so it’s hard to have Teodoro and the rest of his ticket present in all areas.
Lakas-Kampi-CMD chair and Deputy Speaker Ma. Amelita C. Villarosa:
The party’s main concern is how to merge national and local campaign operations, especially the scheduling of campaign sorties. We have over 12,900 party bets, who comprise about two-thirds of those running for local posts. The leadership will also have to act decisively as a party in putting an end to the disinformation campaign clearly aimed at undermining party unity. We start by asking all members to stand solid behind Gibo’s presidential bid and the rest of the team.
Albay Gov. Joey Salceda:
Despite the maelstrom in our national party, as a loyal foot soldier, I continue to plod on. The order of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo is to make Gibo win in Albay like she did in 2004. I see no fundamental reason not to obey the order.
House Speaker Prospero Nograles:
I am not privy to how Gibo thinks politically. Yung diskarte niya hindi ko alam( I don’t his political decision-making style).
These ejaculations point to only one thing: PaLaka is facing defeat in the face and its resulting fragmentation when the next popularly-elected President takes his oath.
The evil spoiler to the much desired for anti-corruption and reformist administration: a massive failure of the elections due to digital vote-stealing Dagdag Bawas or anti-election terrorism by anti-democracy forces.
If there was ever a need for patriotic vigilance, the time is now.