Resigned Sara

LOOKING ASKANCE - Joseph Gonzales - The Freeman

Why did Sara resign?

The resignation of Vice President Sara Duterte Carpio from her secretary of Education post, initially without giving any reason, left citizens scratching their heads. Of course, that void allowed a host of characters to supply their own explanation.

It was because she was losing her popularity. So said her father’s chief legal counsel, Salvador Panelo. President Bongbong Marcos’ ratings in the survey were taking a dive, and her continued association as VP to the P was likewise dragging her along. According to Panelo, her resignation was therefore not surprising. “They (her unnamed cheerleaders) really felt it’s time for Inday Sara to leave the Cabinet,” he is quoted as saying.

Panelo’s proffered explanation might be worth considering, except if Sara really didn’t want to be associated with this administration, she should have resigned as vice president as well. Why is she keeping that post?

Her dad should be blamed. So said presidential adviser and disbarred lawyer Larry Gadon. Sara’s father, ex-Prez Duterte and his vlogger-army have been busy branding Bongbong Marcos as a drug user, said the ex-attorney. If the dad (and Sara’s own brothers?) haven’t been avid supporters, how could the daughter fulfill her duty to be loyal to the present prez?

Gadon’s rationale attributes some form of delicadeza to Sara. It implies she can be embarrassed by what her relatives have been doing. It assumes she cares about the sensibilities of the Marcos Family to the antics of the Duterte Family. Are we really that ready to attribute such noble motives to her?

It was a pre-emptive defensive move, according to politician Greco Belgica. As Congress, led by Marcos cousin Martin Romualdez, has cut the budget of the Department of Education, a lot of teachers are going to get pissed. Wallets will be empty. Bonuses will not come. Facilities will be stripped. And who’s going to face the teachers’ ire? But natch, their own head, who came into her position mouthing platitudes about the bright future she was bearing with her!

That dissatisfaction will be murmured by teachers nationwide. Perhaps, even to their own students, in classrooms all over the archipelago. The Duterte name would be tarred and feathered. To avoid the fallout, Sara neatly side-stepped the Congressional boomerang intended for her by submitting her resignation letter.

Neat theory. She did say, in a press conference afterwards, that her move was “not because of weakness but because of true concern for teachers and youth”. Because they’re not going to get moolah! Some point out, though, that it’s really just the plain fact of not having a budget to spend (for bodyguards galore?) that’s fueling the decision.

The Philippine STAR reports that during her press conference, Sara quipped something about how, during times of oppression, she should be able to remain beautiful, and be able to wear a two-piece (bikini?). Vanity, is that you?

Since she was able to give a flippant response for quitting such a serious post, perhaps we could likewise supply some other flippant comeback. Perhaps, she resigned because Filipino students still rank in the bottom 10 out of 81 countries surveyed last year in terms of reading comprehension, science, and mathematics? Because among 64 countries, 15-year-old Filipino students ranked second lowest for creative thinking in the PISA survey? Because the World Bank reports that we have a learning poverty crisis, where 10-year-olds are still unable to read and understand material appropriate for their age?

There are many good reasons for this Education secretary to resign. But let’s add her desire to wearing a two-piece bikini to the list. Nothing like adding an insult to the injury.

Who will step in? Someone who truly cares about the next generation? Unless, of course, the only agenda has ever been to keep the hoi-polloi simple and easy to brainwash for election time. And to keep a ready supply of cheap labor. For the powers that be, this kind of demographic dividend always comes in handy.

vuukle comment


  • Latest
Are you sure you want to log out?

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!

Get Updated:

Signup for the News Round now

or sign in with