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What are you looking for in our next president?

WORDS WORTH - Mons Romulo () - May 24, 2009 - 12:00am

By year end, the presidential campaign will officially start. In May next year, we will have the chance to elect a new president. It is a great opportunity for us to be able to go out and vote for the candidate that we feel will best lead our country for the next six years. As early as now we should look at the credentials of each candidate and take an active part in any way we can to ensure that our country elects the right person for the job.

Joey Concepcion, presidential consultant for entrepreneurship and Go Negosyo founding trustee: The next president of this country should have a Go Negosyo attitude. This means that he/she should be an optimist who bears an enterprising attitude. He must be able to reinforce our hope of a bright future as Filipinos. The next president should realize that the solution to poverty is a vibrant negosyo climate; and that in order to achieve this, we need to help our micro, small and medium entrepreneurs. They will become the future large corporations of the Philippines. The future president should also know how to give importance to family. If a president cannot manage his own family, what more an entire nation?

Emman Papa, coach, Poveda basketball team: Makamasa, brave but considerate, Pinoys first before foreigners.

John L.Fernandez, businessman: Our next president should possess a complete understanding of what all other presidents have been criticized for: corruption! He or she must learn to live with this stigma and hope that one day our president will be the most conscientious leader who fears God and puts Him and others above him/herself. A selfless leader who would be able to hold back temptations to further build his/her empire and that of his/her family members.  However, that would make me a dreamer and most likely will not come true…sadly.  At this point, we just need a leader that would taper our national debt and focus on developing more entrepreneurs and business leaders through education and more training agencies to increase the Filipino’s skill sets especially in times of employment crisis. For starters, we as individuals should contribute by doing our part and living an honest life, which then establishes the right mindset in our choice for the next leader.

Happy David, designer: Somebody that really wants and understands the job and not because people want him to. You can’t be really the best of something if you don’t really want to be the president. Somebody who can inspire and unite the Filipino people to do the right thing with the right training and education plus good morals. Plus the ability to play the role of a great coach and great cheerleader to our country.

Carla Guevara Laforteza, performing artist: Our next president should have, above all, love for and fear of God. He/she must have integrity, political will, leadership, and must be a true patriot. It would also be wonderful if our next president has a first lady/gentleman who is a patron of the arts so that the Philippine theater industry will flourish and be appreciated more, not just by regular local theatergoers, but by all Filipinos. By putting Philippine theater on the map, we could have more foreign audiences who will fly to Manila and boost tourism.

Patricia a.o. Bunye, lawyer: The next president should have a strong sense of history, a clear and unwavering plan for the next six years, and the fortitude to see it through.  He or she should also have the humility to learn from the our past presidents and to emulate their best qualities, like President Arroyo’s making tough although sometimes unpopular decisions; President Ramos’s being daring; and President Aquino’s being prayerful.

Butch Bonsol, president and managing director, Expat Communications, Inc.:  I am in politics myself (elected first councilor in the municipality of Catarman, Northern Samar) and I know the difficulties involved in meeting the expectations of the people and at the same time choosing  to do the right thing even if it is an unpopular decision. To be an effective president, he must have a vision and high aspirations for the destiny of his country and people. These qualities, plus tireless hard work, will ensure that his country will progress. Thus, a president must first have the welfare of his people and his country in his heart. He must be morally strong because once in power he will be faced with numerous temptations to cheat on his country for his and his family’s own interests. Moral strength is a vital quality in a president because he must exercise leadership by example. But morality must also be coupled with intelligence because a president has countless decisions to make, and they must be the right and effective decisions.

One example comes to mind: President Ferdinand E. Marcos. His was a brilliant mind and he had political savvy. But he was unable to control graft and corruption, which spread in the government and his political machinery. On the other hand, among present-day candidates, there are those known for their moral integrity. But the question is: Do they also have the competence to run the government and make vital and far-reaching decisions that would affect an entire nation?

Richard Tiu, businessman: Our president should be someone like Barack Obama who can inspire, change and hope to Filipinos.

Jeannie Reyes Chua, realtor: Here are some of the things I personally feel qualities our next president:

1. Visionary.  Where he/she can see the direction of where he wants the country to be in the future, what it can achieve and what it can attract. Where he/she can solve real issues and move people into a different level of psychology and behavior.

2. Integrity. A president or any leader for that matter should never put himself in a situation that would force him to compromise his decision.  One should have the nerve to stand for what is right and not be afraid to hold himself accountable and others accountable for their actions.

3. An open mind. He/she should listen to others and take sound advice. He/she is ready to question traditional values and willing to try new ways of doing things.

4. Tolerance. A leader should exercise a different level tolerance in stress, pressure and adversity.

 5. God-fearing, not church fearing. It’s really hard to earn the respect and trust of people and it’s also hard to be in that position, knowing that every single decision he/she makes affects the life of every person under his care.

BARACK OBAMA BUTCH BONSOL CARLA GUEVARA LAFORTEZA COUNTRY EMMAN PAPA EXPAT COMMUNICATIONS GO NEGOSYO NEXT PRESIDENT
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