Sex Ed a wedge issue
By Fr. ROY CIMAGALA,
PARENTS should be wary
of this DepEd plan to teach sex education to school children. I feel
they have to register their concern more vocally, because this move is
fraught with danger.
It’s funny that in
spite of the enormous logistics problems besetting the department, it
prefers to give more attention to this sex ed experiment. Priorities
lacking, teachers are underpaid, the whole educational system is
peppered with holes, and yet, here we are, talking about sex ed whose
taunted benefits are seriously put in question.
I know many private
individuals and groups who on their own initiatives have helped
schools by supplying desks, repainting the buildings if not putting up
new buildings, giving scholarships to students and incentives to
teachers, etc., precisely because the DepEd cannot cope with the
There is no doubt that
this sex ed affair is ideologically driven. Hardly any consultation
with parents was made. It’s just shamelessly pushed by groups that
happen to have money and positions of influence. As such it has become
a wedge issue, very intrusive and divisive.
In spite of the many
good things said of it, we cannot deny the fact that this move is part
of a global effort to redefine and reengineer morality, culture and
society itself. The local supporters cannot claim total independence
from this worldwide network, since the whole idea originated from
Obviously, the DepEd
officials are saying that the sex ed they are offering would have
nothing to do with eliciting prurience. It would not be talking about
the sexual act, but about responsibility and health. Tell that to the
Marines! We’ve had enough of this meme, but such reasoning is
Sex is a most delicate
topic, and it cannot be dealt with only with scientific or social and
health purposes in mind. This is the main infirmity of the sex ed
programs so far formulated by different groups. They get stuck in that
Sex always has to be
situated in the general milieu of chastity and of true love that can
only come from God and follow a certain God-given natural law.
Chastity is the effort to integrate the constitutive bodily and
spiritual elements of sex. It’s not just a kind of open field where
anyone can contribute anything he likes.
My experience in
inculcating the virtue of chastity to the young has always required of
me nothing less than heroic prayers and sacrifice and endless
monitoring of developments.
A youth’s mind and
heart are delicate, unstable, easily affected by all sorts of things.
As much as possible someone has to be there whenever they need help,
clarification, reassurance, etc.
In this task, it would
be better to be pro-active, able to read minds and predicaments, and
not to wait for them to come and tell. They have to be given the whole
picture of sexuality and chastity, not the slanted and distorted ones
often presented by some ideologies that have different agendas.
In the UN formula
which is what our local sex ed program follows, this ideological
approach is quite clear. There are references, for example, of
different forms of families, what we may call alternative forms that
are not keeping with our nature.
This approach has
gathered greater notoriety since no less than the current US president
is strongly supporting it, reflecting a very liberal frame of mind.
During the Father’s Day celebration, while he rightly praised the role
of fathers in the family, he also said that families can have two
fathers, instead of a father and a mother.
This is the kind of
development we in our country should try to avoid, by nipping in the
bud whatever initiatives can lead to it. I have no doubt that the
present sex ed program touted by the DepEd has this pedigree and
possibility. We should be very discerning and prudent.
The problems that the
sex ed is supposed to solve are usual problems in any given society.
Yes, we need to do something about them, even something drastic. We
have to empower the families to fulfill their responsibility to teach
chastity and the nature, meaning and purpose of human sexuality.
We also have to clean
up our society – the media, the entertainment world, etc. We have to
put in place a more responsive social network aimed at helping
everyone in this area.
But definitely, the
sex ed proposal is out of the question. It is a wedge that can allow
many more harmful elements to enter our society.
agreement on protecting old Catholic churches
By CHITO DELA TORRE, email@example.com
One late morning of a
June Tuesday, Bishop Leonardo Yuzon Medroso, bishop of Tagbilaran
City, Bohol wrote about a pact that the Philippine Government entered
into with the Vatican that had not been made known throughout the
archipelago. His written thoughts came under the title “The People of
God, the Liturgy and the Religious Artists”:
‘It was on May 29,
2008 that the bilateral Agreement between the Vatican and the Republic
of Philippines to preserve and protect heritage Catholic Churches
spread throughout the island was finalized. Ironically, in spite of
its weight and significance, it was done in a simple ceremony, one
that did not catch the attention of our people.
Signed by no less than
Pope Benedict XVI and President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, it was
considered to be a landmark treaty, for it set into writing the
commitment to a mutual cooperation for the proper care of old
Churches. As the Nuncio to the Philippines, Archbishop Edward Joseph
Adams, aptly puts it: “It is a fact that what constitutes the cultural
patrimony of this nation takes its origin from the Church and was
contributed by her agents.” For his part, DFA Secretary Alberto Romulo
commented: “Heritage Churches are more than just worldly possessions.
They are concrete expressions and enduring representations of profound
faith.” Hence, the bilateral pact has deep repercussions in the years
to come in the field of religious arts, culture and catecheses.
The Diocese of
Tagbilaran looks at this agreement with anticipation. For years the
people of God in this local Church has been growing in its awareness
at the value of the religious patrimony of their parish Churches. The
work of art that they have meticulously conserved in their Churches
have given them the sure footing of orthodoxy, one that ever reminds
them of the Catholic faith that has been handed down to them. This has
shaped their way of reaching out to the God they know and their mode
of praying to this Transcendent One. The mode of their prayer, guided
by the artistic lines, hues and symbols, painted all over the ceiling
and walls of the Church, is within the traditional doctrine of the
Catholic faith. Yet, with the passing of time the influx of fresh
religious ideas and reflections, new expressions of faith, new ways of
identifying oneself with the transcendental reality, has entered into
the consciousness of our people. Slowly, new ecclesiastical art and
architecture has crept in, influencing at its wake the temptation to
break from all past Catholic artistic and architectural traditions.
Not long ago, there
came out in the Internet an interesting article regarding the
influence of the new theological ideas to our liturgy, visual arts and
symbols (cf. H. Reed Armstrong, “Art and Liturgy: Splendor of Faith,”
CRISIS, 1814/2N Street, NW, Washington, D.C. 20036, firstname.lastname@example.org).
It put forward the idea that man does not need a transcendent God.
This he will experience if he just care to take the effort to look
intently at his own nature, contemplate on its beauty and goodness,
appreciate its innate power and its limitless potentials, reach out
for what it is worth for without the intervention and aid of divine
grace and the sacraments. In this position, grace is somehow held as
intrinsic to nature. A certain professor, a representative of this new
theology, once made this statement: "There is now a radical capacity
in nature itself, and not superadded to nature, by which we are
ordained to the knowledge of God. Thus all dualism between nature and
grace is eliminated. Human nature is already graced existence”
concluded: “The effects of this new "lex credendi" have been seen for
some time in art and architecture. If man already lives an "engraced"
existence naturally, and the sacramental union with Christ is
ontologically superfluous, a mere symbol of entrance into a "faith
community," then the altar rail (iconostasis, the rood screen) that
separates the natural world of the faithful and the supernatural world
of the Divine mysteries must go. As Christ is already present in the
community, the sacramental presence of Our Lord in the tabernacle is
now superfluous and can therefore be removed from the sanctuary
precinct. With the traditional concept of the Mystical Body obscured,
the images of saints and holy mysteries, a tradition going back to the
catacombs, are removed in favor of a single figure of the "Risen Lord"
It is fortunate that
our lay faithful and our priests have not succumbed to these strange
and alien teachings. They still see themselves as sinners badly
needing the redemption promised to them from above, and therefore,
weak individuals who are not ashamed in reaching expectantly outward
to the Transcendent One who has become one of them, the “Immanuel,”
uttering that simple but powerful prayer: MARANATHA – “Come, Lord
As the true faith
keeps on feeding the heart and mind of our people with the revealed
divine realities, ever moving them to deeper contemplation of God,
their prayer life becomes more vigorous and potent. To express these
experiences and to help them to get them back to God, they need
relevant liturgy and sensitive artists.
With the exchange of
instruments that marked the forging of the bilateral Agreement of the
Vatican and the Republic of the Philippines to protect the religious
and cultural heritage of our people, it is our hope that arts in our
Churches will be properly cared for and revered. It is also our hope
that with this renewed interest for religious arts and the subsequent
effort to promote and protect them, we may see the emergence of new
artists with fresh visions coming out to revitalize our symbols of
prayer, divine longing, and our liturgy. As Fr. Reed Armstrong
concluded in his article in the Internet: “Even today, in this age of
iron or, let us say, white metal, the Temple of Solomon and the
Cathedral of Chartres have not exhausted all the possibilities of
getting back to God. There is still something to be garnered from
those people with plaster in their hair and fingers full of paint”
In case you don’t
remember, Bishop Medroso, a “Canon lawyer of the 1917 Code”, first
served as Bishop of Borongan before he moved to Tagbilaran. On April
10 and 11 in year 2002, the Diocese of Borongan celebrated the
fifteenth year of his Episcopal Installation as Bishop of Borongan, as
well as the fortieth anniversary of the diocese. Making the twin
occasions most significant for the people of Eastern Samar, and most
especially for Boronganons was His Excellency Archbishop Antonio
Franco, STD, JCD, Papal Nuncio to the Philippines and Dean of the
Diplomatic Corps who personally visited the diocese. Bishop Medroso
welcomed him, saying the whole diocese and its members were grateful
for his presence. Joining Bishop Medroso were church dignitaries
(bishops) and priests of the different dioceses in the Eastern Visayas
region, as well as national, provincial and local civil officials and
delegates from the different parishes of the church. For instance,
there were Archbishop Pedro Dean of the Metropolitan Diocese of Palo,
Bishop Felomino Bactol of Biliran, Bishop Angel Hobayan of Catarman,
Bishop Emeritus of Calbayog Maximiano Cruz, Bishop Jose Palma of
Calbayog, and Monsignor Jose Quitorio (a native of Dolores, Eastern
Samar) of the Catholic Bishop Conference of the Philippines.
According to a report from Leyte Samar Daily Express Borongan
correspondent Pio L. Calvo, the celebration focused on the theme “Babo
Vobis Pastores” (“I will give you shepherds after my own Heart”).
Hounding anomalies in
rural settings – will they reach the new Malacañang?
By CHITO DELA TORRE, email@example.com
Time is now to monitor
government equipment that were given to barangays. Are they still
functional? Are they still owned by the barangay government, or by
the group of persons – mostly farmers – to whom they were entrusted?
Reports should be sent to the new Philippine president – erstwhile
Senator Benigno Simeon “Noynoy” Cojuangco Aquino III upon his
assumption of the presidency come June 30, 2010, on the first hour
after outgoing prez Gloria Arroyo seals her rule at exactly 12 high
noon of that day. Meanwhile, president-elect Noynoy should anticipate
that matters like these should be looked into with dispatch by himself
and his administration.
Catbalogan – the seat
of the provincial government – is the locus from where top decisions
are made as to what should be sent down to the barangays. It is also
where the decision makers often meet albeit its being the residence of
some of them. Here people mix, from the educated to the less educated
and the uneducated. Here they get information and clarifications on
issues that they bring back home, to their communities and families.
And it is also here that they reveal information about anomalous
transactions and illegal and unlawful activities, including abuses of
government officials and employees, obtaining in their own
communities. That’s why people here want to know what has gotten to
all those that have been sent to the rural areas in response to
requests or in implementation of decisions.
Sometime late in year
2003, then Second District representative Antonio Eduardo Nachura
caused to be delivered to selected barangays 8 rice threshers, each
worth P83,000 with a 9-horsepower Yanmar air-cooled engine to power
the equipment, for farmers to increase their palay production and
harvests. The Samar Agricultural and Fishery Multi-Purpose
Cooperative was tasked to monitor the use and care of those
P664,000-worth 9 threshers and see to it that those machines would
still be useable until today and for some years more.
Now, what happened to
Sta. Rita got one each
for barangays Anibongon, Binanalan, and Cadara(gan). Named to account
for them were punong barangay Jeracleo Cajipe, the Anibongon rice
producers association through Vedasto Lagario, and Cadara(gan) rice
producers association, in that order.
Basey got its shares
of the blessing for sitio Bangon of Canmanila thru Romualdo Echano,
Serum thru Rolando G. Jaingue, and Villa Aurora thru Meliton Lancanan.
only one for San Rafael, care of farmer Jorge Abainza.
recipient barangay was “Villa Rosa” of Basey, with village chief
Sisinio O. Morabor as custodian. But wait. There is no barangay by
that name in Basey!
recipients in Basey and Villareal are also supposed to render a
written report on what has been the effect of the threshers to the
palay harvesting work in their localities. There has been no
published account on any of the required report so far.
Never mind if the
recipient trustees of those rice threshers were believed to be
political supporters of the benefactor who was then a staunch and
highly credible political leader of Samar – because anyway my idol
Eddie could no longer reenter politics while he is an Associate
Justice or member of the Supreme Court to which he was appointed in
Catbalogan that some custodians arrogated the ownership of the
threshers unto themselves and made money out of the rentals for the
use of the machines. The suspicion may not be true, but this can be
erased only if there will be a clear public accounting of the actual
use of both the machines and the proceeds from rentals for use
thereof. Having been given to the barangay units, or to an
association, the money earned from the rentals should have been turned
over to the barangay treasurer or the association treasurer and this
such treasurer should also keep a public record of his or her
accounting of the money. Where no money was made in payment, it was
in terms of “takal” of palay threshed.
A rice mill more than
a decade ago was acquired by a cooperative in an interior southern
barangay of Samar, from a bank loan obtained by the cooperative
operating in the village. For a short period of time, that rice mill
kept running and the proceeds went to the cooperative, as its
legitimate owner. Not long after that heyday, the village chieftain
claimed personal ownership of the equipment and since then kept for
his own personal use the financial gains from operating it, according
to complaining co-op members, mostly women, who until now continuously
fail to reclaim the rice mill. Could that village be Bulao in Basey?
A rural workers
association obtained a loan but an agriculturist, using technical
deception, became owner and user of the project for which the loan was
released, and now, the borrower members do not want to assume the
repayment obligations. They said, they never for once gained anything
from that loan and the project. This same agriculturist used a grant
for a fishing project that was supposed to be credited to the efforts
of a group of island fishermen. When fish harvest time came, the
islanders were told to back off. The agriculturist and those working
for him eventually became private owners of that fishing project.
Who in the
government now will look into these anomalies? Or, will these be left
alone? Something is wrong here, isn’t there? Will the new president
of the Philippines care to look into this as early as July, 2010?
Politics is a noble
By Fr. ROY CIMAGALA,
would seem to be the very antithesis of honesty and goodness.
Sometimes, I hear people say that those who enter it must be ready to
sell their soul and conscience to the devil."
IN his recent visit to
Cyprus, Pope Benedict told public officials that politics is a noble
vocation. That piece of news, I am sure, must have elicited at least a
second glance or a double take from many people.
We have become not
only blasé to politics but also so skeptical and cynical about it that
to associate it with vocation and anything spiritual and religious
would sound like an oxymoron, a contradiction in terms.
The way it is played
out in many places nowadays, politics would seem to be the very
antithesis of honesty and goodness. Sometimes, I hear people say that
those who enter it must be ready to sell their soul and conscience to
And yet we cannot deny
the fact that deep down in our heart, we know that politics is
objectively important and necessary. It is also unavoidable. And it in
fact plays a very crucial role in our life as a people.
It’s what is supposed
to hold us together in an organic and functioning unity. It’s what
keeps us going as a people, maintaining us, developing and helping us
in our immediate concerns, and leading us to our ultimate destination.
Thus, we can say that
politics is part of our nature and therefore part of the will of God
for us. To call it a vocation is actually an understatement, since it
can be and should be our way to personal sanctity and heroic
Given its range and
scope, politics is a tremendous way to God and to the people. Try to
imagine the things involved there – the rectitude of intention, the
hard work, the selflessness and heroism required, the patience, the
clarity of vision, the constant monitoring of developments big and
So we need not only to
debug the way we do politics, but also to undertake a major overhaul
of our political culture, involving everyone. This aspect of our life
is crying for thorough and urgent transformation and change.
The other day, I was
checking the blogs offering forums for political discussions in the
local scene, and I was almost devastated by what I read there. So much
muckraking and ugly catfights! And to think that the issues were
relatively not that important. There was so much noise over
All of us, one way or
another, have a part to play in politics. But the political leaders
need to be clearly prepared and competent to play politics properly,
without deforming its nature, thwarting its purpose, and truncating
Politicians need to
realize very deeply that they can function well only when they are
adequately grounded on the authentic nature and requirements of
politics. That’s when they can relate politics to its origin in God’s
divine plan. Short of that, politics becomes easy prey to evil
Politicians also need
to be lean and mean in handling the endless predicaments they are
likely to face in their work. They should have a firm and proper sense
of priority, a good grasp of the criteria to guide them in their work.
Our main problem is
that many of our politicians are still incompetent in directly
relating politics to religion. Many of them think politics is just a
game where faith and the morality that goes with it are not supposed
So they end up guided
only by shallow values and quick fixes that often get snarled in
inconsistencies. They fail to realize that the art of politics is
essentially a very moral duty.
precisely focused on this point. He said that politics should always
promote the moral truth in public life. He proposed three ways to
- Politicians should
act responsibly on the basis of factual knowledge. In other words, to
avoid biases coming from party pressures or selfish interests.
- Politicians should
deconstruct political ideologies that supplant the truth. There are
many such ideologies. They can also contain some good elements, but we
have to be most wary of their questionable parts that can act as the
- Politicians should
continually make positive laws that are based on the ethical
principles of natural law. A study of the positive laws in many
countries reveals a steady departure from ethics and an adoption of
pure pragmatism that can compromise genuine justice.
We need politicians
who understand the value of these indications just spelled out by the
Pope. Let’s pray and work hard for this goal.
Gauging people’s throb
thru government sensors
By CHITO DELA TORRE
Except for Kris
Aquino’s June 10 start of her personal reach-out sorties to the people
in the Philippine archipelago, starting with assistance items linked
to the education of the youth in Tarlac – which one television network
rather jokingly described as an acting out by a “first lady”, people
in such critically poor areas as the towns and barrios that comprise
the biggest portion of the territory of the Warays have yet to hear
what the incoming Aquino administration will be doing to bring the
government literally closest to the people.
President-elect Benigno Simeon “Noynoy” Cojuangco Aquino III has
several times been featured in tv news reports as opening his
government to the poor masses so that he and his bureaucracy could
readily and easily extend them public service, meaning, give them what
they need – medicines or medical attention, some cash for
transportation or other personal emergency needs, and, very
especially, ears that will listen and hands that will act on the
people’s complaints particularly against harassment or an abuse by any
government officer or employee especially in the law enforcement
bureaucracy. That is why, Noynoy prefers to “live” outside of
Malacañang, in a house which can publicly attend to all those seeking
the immediate help of a Father of the Republic of the Philippines.
That may not be
enough. Thus, Kris’ own initiatives may be able to fill in the gap.
That is most welcome. Kris’ presence alone will be both inspiring and
alleviating. More heartening in this her gesture is her pronouncement
that no cash from the government will be used, as she will be using
her own resources and the resources of all others who will put in
anything big or small that can allow her to carry out her
self-proclaimed mission from day one to the last day of her elder
brother’s 1,950 days in office as Chief Executive of the Philippine
Government. Maybe Kris will be ready to accept the offer of
assistance (to Noynoy’s governance) that the quondam cinematic
president, Erap Estrada, reportedly extended even as he was preparing
his congratulatory message for the president-elect and while he was on
vacation in London.
To Noynoy, however,
offers like those of Kris and Erap may not at all be too easy to
accept, even if they will come handily and in clean plates. Shortly
after two days of reporting the election results showing him to be on
the far lead to the presidency, Noynoy started receiving signals via
the men and women working around him closely and tightly that so and
so individuals were “applying” for various government positions of
extending other forms of assistance, but he found out for himself that
it was not easy to handle those offers and applications. Hence, a day
after his proclamation of as the duly elected President of the
Republic of the Philippines last June 8 by Senate President Juan Ponce
Enrile and House Speaker Prospero Nograles at the joint session of the
bicameral Congress, he was reported to have not yet even finalized his
planned appointees for the Cabinet positions. Noynoy seemed to have
needed longer and deeper moments of studying options, qualifications
and personal backgrounds of those whom he had in mind as the ideal
persons who should work with him towards accomplishing his tasks and
his campaign promises, vis-a-vis the almost insurmountable inundating
problems being left by a terminating lies-laden-and-corruption-ridden
9-year Arroyo administration.
It’s good the Liberal
Party stalwarts don’t distance from their chosen leader, but some of
their pronouncements, particularly those made during the campaign
period may be difficult to be tailored-fit to the upcoming Aquino
administration’s immediacy options. Hard-line LP leaders are taking
extra care that the doors are shut down – just as they did early last
April – to clones of Arroyo if only to frustrate tries to get her back
to power thru the “backdoor”. (In the call for the shutout to
congressional candidates allied with Arroyo, LP senator Kiko
Pangilinan exhorted voters: “Let us prevent their return to power
through the backdoor....”). I share the LP’s sentiment that the
upcoming Aquino administration should at the outset shield itself
against opportunists and sweet-talking ladies and gentlemen about
whose shenanigans, often those at the regional, provincial, city and
municipal levels are more knowledgeable and familiar.
There may likely be
paradigm shifts, particularly when beginning anew to handle the
government’s departments, bureaus and other agencies, including the
programs and projects that had been bannered by them. I suppose the
think tank men and women of Noynoy are experts in these and on those,
and that as such, they are almost ready to put them in their proper
places. Noynoy was right when he told the media minutes after his
hands were raised in his proclamation as the duly elected president,
that his administration’s immediate courses of action will definitely
include information gathering and collection of documents particularly
in offices that have been suspected to have become workplaces of
corruption, and then studying and determining at once what appropriate
criminal and administrative cases to pursue. Of course, here we can
already assume safely that Kris would have no hand; she herself hasn’t
given us inkling on that.
The people’s opinions
and reactions, apart from complaints and expressions of needs, may
need to be taken stock of and appreciated. Often, actually, they
involve simple monitoring, observation, note-taking, and reviewing,
because, often, they are not expressed as openly as expected – most
often, they are made known only among and to friends – but, yes, they
are an important public pulse barometer and therefore a significant
ingredient in public management that must be considered, especially
when making decisions or adopting courses of action. Past
administrations had been employing informal surveys along this line.
During the time of then Information secretary Francisco “Kit” Tatad
who would become senator in the post-EDSA People Power years, there
used to be “OAB” (opinions, attitudes, and beliefs) surveys – not
because martial law required it but because the pre-martial law years
found out that they were necessary tools in governance, particularly
in a government’s effort to make the government “close” (and later,
“closer”) to the people. Private media also employ them because OABs
provide avenues for sensing news developments. The government’s
intelligence units also gather them to enable them to study “tips” and
their meanings in relation to scenario building.
incoming administration will also look this way.
Samarnons’ pride: they
elected Noynoy their president, Binay, their vice-president
By CHITO DELA TORRE
Unlike any other
single province and single big island with component provinces and
cities, Samar stands out unique in the historic first automated
elections in the Philippines last May 10, 2010. Its performance was
far from the all-time’s expectation that it was going for Erap
Estrada, the cinematic guy whom they heavily worked for to become
president in 1998. Last May 10, it relegated Erap to a shadow behind
a senator who was only then being seen by many Samarnons as a
second-fiddle to moneyed aspirant Manny Villar. More than that, it
rallied behind that senator, who, as electronic election results bore,
would soon become president apparent, and then be proclaimed as
president-elect of the Republic of the
in a joint Senate and House of Representatives session.
Samar Island consists
of three provinces, with a total of 829,846 combined votes cast into
the PCOS machines – a first time in the
watched by the whole world as to its ultimate operative technology.
In less than five days from the time precinct level counting of votes
closed, the Commission on Elections reported via the internet the
results of elections in the provinces of Samar, Eastern Samar and
Northern Samar. Out of the total votes cast in all corners of the
island of Samar, senator Benigno Simeon “Noynoy” Cojuangco Aquino
collected 301,238. This only represented 36.6 per cent of the total
votes cast in the island, but it was enough to convey the message that
the Samarnon electorate already wanted again an Aquino in the
presidency so that the true crusade against graft and corruption, that
senator Ninoy Aquino, Noynoy’s father, began and that Pres. Cory
Aquino, Noynoy’s mother, institutionalized, could be resuscitated and
Noynoy’s votes were
much larger by 36,210 over the total of 85,985 votes mustered by Erap
in Samar which went for Noynoy with 122,195 votes, 37,874 over the
Erap’s 65,141 votes in Northern Samar where Nortehanons gave 103,015
to Noynoy, and 16,767 over Erap’s 59,261 in Eastern Samar which
credited Noynoy with 76,028 votes. Summing up, the whole island of
Samar gave Noynoy a heavy margin of 90,851 over the total of 210,387
that were counted as votes for Erap.
Clearly, Noynoy won in
all three Samar provinces. In terms of percentage, Nortehanons
registered the highest (42.87%) for Noynoy, out of a total of 271,120
actually cast and counted. Westehanons recorded only 39.46% of a
total of 346,987 votes cast, but their 122,195 votes for the
Tarlaqueño far outnumbered those from the north and almost doubled the
76,028 votes engendered for him by the Estehanons who managed 38.9% in
his favor out 213,739 votes cast.
As counting and
canvassing continued up to the national level, not a single protest
was heard against the clear victory of Noynoy in
Samarnons were sure their presidential choice was winning and ending
up as final winner. It was not alone the effort of die-hard Liberal
Party partidistas that worked for that eventual end. There were also
volunteers, but the most significant cause behind the electoral win of
Noynoy was the Samarnons’ conviction that he was the right leader to
liberate them from more than 10 decades of being ignored and abandoned
in the race for massive social, physical and economic development.
Then, Samar and
Eastern Samar gave their vote of confidence to Makati mayor Jojo Binay
as their favored candidate for vice-president. It was an impressive
bestowal of 115,887 votes from the Westehanons and 73,711 from the
Estehanons, or a total of 189,598 that beclouded by 33,357 votes the
total of 156,241 that closest rival senator Mar Roxas obtained (96,212
from Samar and 60,029 from Eastern Samar). In the whole
Binay won, even if Roxas amassed 88,980 in his favor in
Northern Samar. Binay got a total lead margin of 12,127 over Roxas
in the summation of total votes from the three provinces. Certainly,
with this highly significant showing, Samarnons have seen additional
hope in Binay, particularly in his pro-poor campaign slogan of
“gaganda ang buhay kay Binay”.
This is another big
something to be proud of.
I join, therefore, the
Samarnons in right now knocking on the hearts of president-elect
Noynoy and vice-president-elect Binay, with the earnest and fervent
prayer that they will be the first two highest elected officials to
look at Samar island as among their first priorities upon assuming their
posts come June 30 noontime.
I also join my fellow
Samarnons in reiterating our heartfelt congratulations to
President-elect Aquino and Vice-President Binay. (Yes, reiterate,
because we had long ago sent our initial congratulatory messages via
text messaging and other means.) God bless you, two, and the
Please visit Samar province in July so that you can immediately
prioritize our needs and concerns.
+ + + + + + + + + +
Of course, this is
not to say that we are closing the doors of Samar, and our homes, to
Erap, Manny, Gilbert Teodoro, Dick Gordon, Mar, Loren Legarda, and all
others who lost in the presidential and vice-presidential races. In
fact, we wish that you could be with us very soon, and work with us
for many, many days, so that you, too, can gain a better
understanding of how life is like among us poor and abandoned
Samarnons and what Samar is meant for in every the heart of every
other dreaming Filipino. To you, congratulations for your efforts in
the last elections. Your lose should not mean you should leave us.
On the contrary, it should mean an opportunity for you to win more of