^

Opinion

A preliminary list

STRAWS IN THE WIND - STRAWS IN THE WIND By Eladio Dioko -
This early we tried to list down the names of senatoriables who deserve our vote come May 14. We looked closely at the line-up of Team Unity and the Genuine Opposition and did a brief reflection on what we knew of each. Our main sources of course were the reports in the media, both print and broadcast, and what we heard from observers. We were supposed to come up with twelve names arranged in the order of priority. Sadly, however, our list fell short of the magic number. We tried to be less critical of some candidates, giving each the benefit of doubt on how they stood on certain issues. But even this was not enough to fill the gap.

We first focused on the TU line-up. There are two candidates here who stand out as a class by themselves. One is known for his white-heat legal mind and as a staunch advocate of human rights. An outspoken critic on bureaucratic faux pas, his independent views are well known. The second reminds one of the gentlemen in the old Senate like Tanada and Permicias. He is always in proper decorum and is a reliable ally of the good and the true. Seasoned in the academe, he is an educator by persuasion whose credit as such includes a reformed school system. Another candidate has the reputation of being Mr. Clean, having kept his presidential father's name unsullied by any scandal. Soft-spoken and also a gentleman, he never has been a "yes" man even for Pasig moguls. These three certainly deserve another term in the Upper House.

There's a young hopeful in TU who is closely associated with Malacañang, having been its official spokesman in the 2004 presidential elections and having served two cabinet posts. As a congressman he authored major laws including the Dangerous Drug Act and the one creating the Department of Housing and Urban Development. Once voted as one of top 10 legislators, he could be a good senator whose positive outlook could counter-balance an excessively anti-administration upper chamber.

Another young guy in this lineup is a congressman from Mindanao. One of the Spice Boys in the 10th Congress, he signed the impeachment complaint against President Estrada. He authored the Biofuel Act and co-authored the Dangerous Drug Act. Do these accomplishment justify his elevation to the Senate? I feel they do, especially considering the Biofuel legislation. Fully implemented, it could reduce our dependence on fossil fuels, limit our dollar expenditure, and at the same time create more agricultural jobs.

Still another is a young reelectionist who sports a name associated with Philippine nationalism. Even without considering his celebrity wife, such name rings a pleasant bell in the ears of many Filipinos. But by himself the fellow is equipped with academic preparations which only the very best schools could give (Harvard and UAP). This, coupled with a good legislative performance, albeit sans publicity, could work for his repeat tenure in that body.

Close association with the deposed president may work against this senatoriable. But having served a term in the Senate where a pet legislation, the Basic Education law, was crafted and passed, this candidate deserves another term or two in the legislature. This law restructured the field offices of DepEd, empowered field officials and simplified that agency's mandate.

Seven of 12 is fair enough. The other hopefuls, except perhaps a new aspirant from the Lower House, are rather difficult to accept. Two of these are former actors and their presence in that body would convert it into a stage for make-believe. Two of their colleagues are already there and unless we want to have more inutile lawmakers we better be more discriminating.

Now for the GO people. That former media woman may have crossed the wrong line but she could be forgiven because she did fairly well during her term in the Senate. That real estate magnate also deserves a favorable appraisal for his role in the Erap impeachment. But those former old hands have too much of the trapo in them that simply turns us off just to hear their names.

We are tempted to look with favor at the two whistle-blowers from the House. But we are afraid that once in the Senate they will do nothing but below whistles. You see, there's something addicting in tv cameras.

These are our personal insights insofar as those senatoriables are concerned. We could be mistaken and The Freeman readers may have better choices. One thing to remember is that when the moment comes we should have nothing but our conscience to guide us.
* * *
Email: [email protected]

BASIC EDUCATION

BIOFUEL ACT

DRUG ACT

LOWER HOUSE

MR. CLEAN

ONE OF THE SPICE BOYS

PRESIDENT ESTRADA

TANADA AND PERMICIAS

TEAM UNITY AND THE GENUINE OPPOSITION

  • Latest
  • Trending
Latest
Recommended
Are you sure you want to log out?
X
Login

Philstar.com is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

FORGOT PASSWORD?
SIGN IN
or sign in with