BY MANUEL L. CABALLERO
As a political observer of events happening and obtaining in the Philippines, I have always maintained, like others do, that looking and observing in from the outside is more keen, better and more objective than looking and observing in from the inside. We said so, especially in this age of zoom, text, tiktok, email, cell and cell camera & video , internet, and social media. Add the traditional types of mass media like newspapers and TV, and you have an on-the-spot picture and live story of an event happening 10,000 miles away.
The Philippines, as of 2022, has a population of 112 million. Of that number, 67 million are registered voters (1.8 million are abroad). 65 to 75 percent of registered voters, per my estimate based on 2019 elections, will cast their votes. Per my research, 65 percent of the 67 million voters belong to 18-55 age group. These are the people we see wearing pink among the mammoth crowds in VP Leni Robredo's team rallies.
Now, let's shift to the ongoing election campaign in the native country. We will discuss two opposing candidates for president, who, indeed, have opposing traits. VP Leni Robredo who always shows up to face the people in presidential debates and Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. who seems afraid to face his opponents and the people, and who always have an excuse not to show up. I have been noticing that when the Marcos Jr. camp wants to get favorable story to their side, they begin with disinformation. When they notice na hindi binibili ng taong bayan, they stop and start a new false story.
Remember before rallies were allowed under election laws, the false story was that young Filipinos will vote and make Marcos Jr Duterte win. When rallies started and everybody saw that young Filipinos were attending in droves the LeniKiko meetings anywhere in the country and even outside the PH like during last Sunday's Walk for Democracy in New York City, and Walk For Hope in Jersey City, they changed their story.
VP Leni Robredo Facebook Page Photo
Their latest obvious disinformation in order to divide the LeniKiko tandem and deceive the Filipino voters is ROSA or LeniSara. It is being pushed back or rejected in many places even in Davao, so expect a new "song" soon. As one Kakampink said, "Concede na lang kayo. Madali pa yun."
The latest mind-conditioning false story is that Marcos Jr. will win the elections. This fake story is being peddled inspite of the fact that it is widely observed that the Marcos Jr. campaign has lost its appeal to Filipinos because of the lies it has spread like the supposed "golden era" of martial law in the 70s. When in fact, it was bankrupt era in PH history. The observation is that the Marcos campaign has spiraled downwards and continues to go down as election approaches.
Having written all of the above about the Marcos Duterte campaign, there is nothing much to write about the more popular LeniKiko Team. We are all witnesses to the mass of crowds that attend the Leni-Kiko rallies anywhere. Majority of Filipinos seem to have decided to vote for the LeniKiko and the Angat Team. They appear to embrace the theme that "Gobyernong tapat, angat buhay lahat."
It seems the Filipino voters will respond to VP Leni's call for revolution of the heart and the mind. They will vote their conscience on May 9. They want to change the ways things are going in their country for the sake of everyone now and the future.
As a defender of democracy, she repeated her beliefs in people power in her recent speech in Bohol rally before 80,000 supporters, "Walang kayang tumumbas sa pinagbigkis nating lakas." (Nothing can equal our collective strength).