• 2013 a foretaste of 2016


    By Glenn Gale

    IT’S all over bar the shouting and whining, though we are bound to hear plenty of the latter because, as we all well know, nobody ever loses in a Philippine election—they just get cheated out of victory!

    Perhaps the most significant factor to emerge from the 2013 elections is its subtle signals on the 2016 Presidential election. And as informed cafe society tattle goes, during the campaign season this time around Filipinos got a clear indication as to how strongly President Noynoy Aquino 3rd will be electioneering for the person he would like to hand over the tenancy of Malacañang Palace to in 2016.

    That salient point is also picked up by Malacañang ally Ceb Rep. Eduardo Gullas who noted: “In a way, we have now had a foretaste of 2016 and of the manner by which the President will be pushing relentlessly for his chosen successor”.

    As Gullas points out, over the past weeks President Aquino has criss-crossed the archipelago performing a remarkable job tirelessly campaigning for the senatorial candidates of the Liberal Party (LP)-led coalition.

    “If the President was pushing hard for his Senate bets, he will surely be campaigning several times harder for his successor – for the one who can best carry on the reforms he has initiated, especially in fighting official corruption,” Gullas said.

    On account of initial gains in clean governance, Transparency International gave the Philippines a Corruption Perception Index score of 3.4 in 2012, up from a score of 2.6 in 2011.

    The score is based on a scale of 0 to 10, where 0 means that a country is perceived as highly corrupt and 10 means that a country is perceived as very clean.

    This recognition of improved governance and financial management comes on top of Fitch Ratings giving the Philippines its first-ever investment-grade credit rating.

    Incidentally, Gullas is a member of the national executive committee and Cebu provincial head of the Nacionalista Party (NP), which had three senatorial candidates under the LP-led coalition – Cynthia Villar, Alan Peter Cayetano, and Antonio Trillanes IV.

    “The President understandably wants dependable officials who can best help him and the country keep up the reforms. He is in an excellent position to endorse candidates owing to his high approval rating. He is not squandering the occasion to help elect as many like-minded reformists as possible,” Gullas said.

    Based on the latest Pulse Asia survey, the President posted approval and trust ratings of 68 percent and 70 percent, respectively.

    Another intriguing outcome of the just concluded electoral exercise is the quite remarkable success of Nancy Binay, the twenty-something daughter of popular Vice President Jejomar Binay. There is little doubt that Nancy (with little political track record of her own to go by) owes her elevation to the Senate solely to the high nationwide regard and respect of Filipinos for her dad.

    And with VP Binay expected to make a run for the presidency in 2016, the Nancy phenomenon gives formal notice this early as to who the other candidates (including Malacanang’s anointed one) will have to beat in 2016.



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