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Opinion

Can BOPK dominate the 2022 council?

OFF TANGENT - Aven Piramide - The Freeman

I have written this before and I will reiterate it here now that I am not a social media buff. Aside from the fact that I am an IT idiot (and therefore ignorant how to operate gadgets), there are diverse reasons why I resist becoming addicted to reading FB accounts or looking at Twitter and other digital platforms. Many times I have heard of fake information being posted on FB. Cebu City Mayor Edgardo Labella was, on several occasions, on the receiving end of false info. There are also personal (and immoral) dalliances published on the social media. The honor of Councilor Nina Mabatid, for example, has so much been stained by libelous materials that, if I were her lawyer, I would have already recommended initiating criminal action.

In my attempt to avoid reading fake news or reacting to personal notes, I refuse to waste my time scrolling fb accounts. But I have to accept the fact that different social media platforms are now part of our way of life. There is no quest that from the high and the mighty belonging to the hierarchical top, to the most ordinary among our citizenry, digital gadgets are their constant companion. To illustrate this point, I saw a selfie of a woman doing laundry by the river and she had her eyes fixed on the cell phone. A habal-habal driver met an accident because while he was bringing a passenger, his eyes were not on the road. And so forth and so on.

If I were to opine on the state of minds of politicians purely on the basis of their social media exposures, I can say without fear of contradiction that, this early, they have given solid attention on meeting with voters. In the places where they converge, tarpaulins announcing their presence are hung on the most conspicuous places. After their meetings, they try to achieve multiplier effects. They take photographs of their assemblage in angles that show appreciable number of persons attending and post on fb accounts the most inviting shots. For instance, there are pictures of high political personalities participating in “feeding activities” in areas they would not dare tread whether in good or bad times. The accompanying description is not on the “feeding”. Rather words and praises are written about the visiting politician.

Judging upon the exposures of local politicians through FB, I can offer an uneducated guess that the councilors belonging to the group of former Mayor Tomas Osmeña might have a numerical advantage resulting from the 2022 elections. I assume that in the north district, the team of Young, Archival, Dizon and Japson, all incumbents plus the return of Andales and Arcilla city council might be difficult to beat. On the side of Labella and Rama, only Garganera and Guardo have the yeoman’s chance of getting re-elected. The bets from the city administration who would have high percentage of winning are set to run for higher offices. They are not contesting councilorial seats anymore. Mabatid, who ranked second top vote getter in the 2019 polls, is reportedly running for congress while Atty Raymond Garcia, who barely snatched the eighth spot, aims for vice mayorship. So, if fb accounts were votes, there will be 6 BOPK councilors and the 2 Labella-Rama SP members are probably victorious.

In the South District, the Labella-Rama team has 5 council bets who can be expected to win. These are Hontiveros, Edu Rama, Cuenco, Zafra and Osmena. BOPK might snatch three and create a 9-3 voting advantage. If they have the ABC and the SK, their 11 shall be dominant.

The better strategy for BOPK is to make sure that they win eight council seats in the north while for Labella-Rama to have control in the city council, they should field Mabatid and Garcia back as councilors to stem the Osmeña allies. Whew!

EDGARDO LABELLA
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