My assessment on presidential debate (per candidates’ performances)


Presidential candidates with their respective podiums before the start of the debate at Capitol University in Cagayan de Oro. (taken from COMELEC spokesperson James Jimenez’s Twitter account)

Sorry if I’m already too late of posting on this assessment of mine about the performances of presidential candidates during the recently concluded first presidential debate sanctioned by COMELEC at Capitol University in Cagayan de Oro as the day after the debate, I had to roam about the city itself before I left for Cebu via Trans Asia 10 at around 8 AM and unfortunately, I could not accessed internet via LTE on board because my tab had low battery and I wasn’t able to bring the charger of it (went off when I was surfing Facebook while sailing around Southern Cebu before I arrived in Cebu City port) and thus, I have to post my assessment, more than 2 days after the debate. My assessment can be accessed also hrough my FB account as I posted it, morning after the debate and before I left Cagayan de Oro for Cebu.

Here are my assessments for each of the candidates’ performances:

1) Poe – she articulated a lot and answered all the questions thrown to her by the moderators well though some of her answers seemed to be a bit improbable like free lunch for pupils.

2) Santiago – well, her declining health had been obvious and stuttered a lot especially about the EDCA issue; nevertheless, her intellectual wit remained for somewhat and would have been a runaway winner of the debate if she was healthy.

3) Duterte – obviously, the rule of the debate didn’t resonate well with his temperament of being a feisty because he and the rest of the candidates in general, were time-limited in answering questions from the hosts and rebutting statements from their opponents and I think, if the debate format was similar to US presidential primary debate, he would have been a runaway winner; nevertheless, he really articulated for somewhat his federalism platform though about eradicating crimes, he was obviously under illusion that he could eradicate them within 6 months at most.

4) Binay – actually his debating performance was really all about defending his accomplishments as being a chief executive in Makati for years and dissing his bitter rival, Mar Roxas though he was able to articulate about his strengths on tackling poverty especially among farmers and actually, his plans are mostly realistic. The debate format prevented him to maximize his strength as a candidate and had the debate was similar to its US counterparts, he could have demolished Roxas or vice versa.

5) Roxas – he really articulated well about the accomplishments of the “Matuwid na Daan” mantra of the current administration but seemed to be focused himself on dissing Binay every time the hosts told him to rebut Binay’s statements. Therefore, he was all about stopping Binay and vice versa and think that there should be a special debate between them to show who’s really a better candidate.

COMELEC money ban is a crazy idea



OMG, less than a week before the general election on May 13, COMELEC released a resolution to prohibit depositors to withdraw 100,000 pesos (US$2,500), or its equivalent in any foreign currency from their bank deposits as well as to transport  or possess more than 500,000 from May 8 (today) to May 13 (election day). Encashment of checks and conversion of any monetary instrument into cash exceeding 100,000 pesos are also prohibited.  The poll body said the prohibition would cover banks, finance institutions, quasi-banks, pawnshops, remittance companies, and similar institutions. Exempted from the transportation of money will be farmers, merchants, and businessman traveling to and from Manila, and other business destinations “in their ordinary course of their business”. COMELEC will deputize Banko Sentral ng Pilipinas to implement the money ban.

The moment I read the news about the money ban, I have already thought that this is a crazy idea to stem the problem of vote buying and selling during a week before elections. COMELEC was naive enough to think that money alone is the source of evil of having mediocre but famous candidates to be elected to serve the constituents of a particular area. COMELEC never realized that during the final week before the election or during the election day itself, money transactions will be always ongoing because people paying goods, dues, and services at any amount does not recognize when to or not to pay, unless people stops paying for it, which is impossible as every transactions in daily lives have prices that needs to be paid.

I think COMELEC should be blamed, in case a patient dies due to an illness or an accident because loved ones cannot able to deposit money, let alone paying hospital bills that may worth 100,000 pesos or above.

This is an example of naive thinking that banning something to stem problems during elections or anything problems in our daily lives do assure an orderly society during a specific time. Generalizing things as a cause of societal problems is an insane thinking. Everyone else have different purpose to use something like money or guns, whether for good or bad, but addressing societal problems should not resort to condemn a particular thing as a cause of a problem, rather COMELEC and the government itself in general should address the root cause of vote buying that are the flawed personalistic political system and monopolistic economic system where voters especially in the lower class rely on politicians who are wealthy that could promise them a money during elections to alleviate their hunger in exchange of their votes.

Shooting spree at the Cebu’s Palace of Justice

John Pope, the gunman who later gunned down by the police.

John Pope, the gunman who later gunned down by the responding police.

Early this morning, the Palace of Justice, the palace where the Regional Trial Court in Region VII is located was rocked by shooting incidents done by a Canadian citizen named John Pope, who was facing a trial for a complaint filed by Dr. Rene Rafols, John Pope’s neighbor. Among those injured was Cebu City Assistant Prosecutor Maria Theresa Casiño and among those killed were Dr. Rene Rafols, and Atty. Juvian Achas. John Pope, the gunman, gunned down by the responding police.

John Pope before the shooting spree and in fact, was arrested in 2011 for illegal possession of firearms but he was able to post bail with 800,000 pesos. The charges filed by his neighbor, Dr. Rene Rafols had something to do with his arrest for illegal possession of firearms as the complainant said that he (John Pope) always harassed not just the complainant but also his neighbors. It was said that John Pope through his letters to GMA 7 Cebu anchor Bobby Nalzaro was frustrated with the crawling justice system of our country.

John Pope was supposedly to be deported but had not been executed because of several charges that he was facing before the shooting spree.

The shooting incident should have not been occurred had the securities of the Cebu’s Palace of Justice never neglected themselves of maintaining the security in spite of lack of security equipments like metal detector. I myself can assert that the security of Cebu’s Palace of Justice has been lax compared with other government or especially private-owned establishments. When I entered at the Cebu’s Palace of Justice in September 2011, their security personnel never even inspected my body or my valuables I brought and they just entered me with ease as I had to attend a court hearing for our project in Political Science subject.

Another, John Pope had a reason on why he did of shooting the people at the Palace of Justice that cost three lives including himself as our judicial system really stinks on making urgent verdict especially if both complainants comes from the lower economic status or non-Filipinos. That complacency on making urgent verdict for a specific case frustrates many people and some of them have to do extra judicial means of resolving a case like gunning down a complainant or respondent. I think we need to overhaul our judicial system where our judges does not bombarded by several cases that have to be heard in a day like for example of having a jury system like in US where a jury is the one will decide the verdict while a judge just facilitate an entire court procedings.

Condolences to the families of Dr. Rene Rafols and Atty. Juvian Achas.