High drama
SINGKIT - Doreen G. Yu (The Philippine Star) - March 10, 2013 - 12:00am

The situation is so fraught with high drama it is being discussed and commented on endlessly. And the comments range from “wipe them all out” to “support their noble cause,” from “lay down arms and return home” to “send them all over there and let it be someone else’s problem.”

To say the situation in Sabah is complicated is an understatement, and the plot – so to speak – thickens by the day. What we read and hear – in media, as chismis or from “sources” – does not give the whole picture, so at this point it would be most prudent to hold our peace and avoid further stoking the flames and inciting passions. Not being privy to all the bidas and contrabidas, all the twists and turns, plots and sub-plots of this drama, we are like the proverbial blind men trying to describe the elephant.

Unfortunately, it is campaign season, and candidates feel obligated to weigh in with their “expert” opinions, no matter how inane. I think I’ll just stick to our office pundit, who for the past few weeks has been insisting on his version of a title: “Sabah, a banana republic.” Any attempt to explain this to non-Pinoys will be an effort lost in translation.

Speaking of candidates, I take my hat off to the Commission on Elections for finally enforcing campaign rules. The landscape of the metropolis is much saner and a lot more pleasant without the names and faces of candidates plastered on every tree and post and waiting shed along every street.

Unfortunately, one candidate has so far managed to skirt this rule by having his photo flashed on the electronic billboard along a main thoroughfare that is sadly along my usual route. He is also the only candidate so far – at least that I have encountered – who employs vehicles with speakers mounted on their roofs, driving around all day blaring jingles and slogans that are too muffled to be understood anyway. In this age of cyber campaigning, that is a throwback to the old days, but a campaign gimmick that we certainly can do without, given the noise and the aggravation, if you happen to be behind one of these slow moving vehicles.

Kudos to the Comelec too for citing violators and threatening them with charges to be filed (as I write this no case has yet been filed, but several threats have been made) if they don’t take down their illegal posters/tarpaulins.

The job of the Comelec will only get harder once the campaign period for local candidates begins later this month (on the 29th). Citizens can and should help the Comelec by taking pictures of illegal posters/tarpaulins and other campaign violations and reporting them to mycomelec.tv, Twitter account@comelec or email comelectv@gmail.com

Maybe this way, candidates will finally learn to follow rules, a lesson that the winners will hopefully take with them when they get into office.  

For false Christs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and miracles to deceive even the elect – if that were possible. See, I have told you ahead of time. So if anyone tells you, “There he is, out in the desert,” do not go out; or, “Here he is, in the inner rooms,” do not believe it. For as lightning that comes from the east is visible even in the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. Matthew 16:24-27

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