23 Feb DIGRIAM: Kiss Naman Diyan!



by Angelo de Guzman


Ok, so I didn’t get what I wished for. I was really hoping for a Miriam-Duterte tandem, but as fate would have it they had to run for the same office, as President of the Republic of the Philippines.

Just this Sunday, the Filipino people witnessed the first (as far as we know), presidential debate in the country. My facebook feed has become a breaking news update of sorts when post upon post scattered my feeds containing comments of people who were watching the debate and commenting on how their candidates fared. But truth be told, I could not care less. The whole “debate” itself wasn’t even a debate. My family has more juicy arguments in relation to politics compared to that! But just like any romantic Filipino, what really stood out was the Miriam and Duterte “debate” portion. Aaminin ko, kinilig ako! What I saw was a mutual understanding, respect and admiration between political rivals. It was new, especially coming from someone who is as feisty as Miriam Santiago, and someone who is as “foul mouthed” as Rody Duterte. Aldub ba kamo?

Words and body language say it all. Did anyone notice Mayor Duterte ushering Ma’am Miriam to the front of the stage after the debate? A lot of comments from friends would say Duterte is a brat for saying such things, or isn’t exactly a good role model for kids because he is a self confessed womanizer, and again, a “foul-mouthed bastard” to boot. But underneath the thug-like appearance, tough as he wants to be seen, he really is a gentleman.

Miriam and Duterte both are just that, in both their personal and political lives, they have had to make certain sacrifices to benefit a lot of people, people whom they served. One thing is certain though, whoever wins between Miriam and Digong, we can be assured that we are in good hands.

If Miriam wins, I am sure she would not waste a good talent as Duterte, to just let him sit and retire in Davao, and probably the same is true with Duterte. Political rivals are political rivals, but at the end of election time, when people have decided who shall be living in that extremely uncomfortable home called Malancanang, we will all have to make an effort to work together to make this country poverty-free and corruption-free.

It takes a leader to see beyond political parties and identify who is qualified to serve the people in any appointed office. Forget about “utang na loob”, forget about who is popular, forget about sino ang anak ng artista or nabibilang sa isang political family, forget about daang matuwid, forget all those branding and marketing ng politiko. Kung libreng cake lang ang gusto mo versus a corrupt free country, bahala ka. Kung gusto mo ng daang matuwid pero hindi naman talaga kaya, bahala ka. Kung gusto mo ng walang experience, walang corruption pero wala ring alam, bahala ka. Basta ako, kinilig ako kay Miriam at Digong, hindi dahil mababaw ako, kundi I know for a fact that it takes a lot of maturity to be honest about their admiration towards a rival. While all the other candidates, must have been smiling but “baskil” (basa kili kili) at the same time. And that embrace by Digong and Miriam? Hmmm. Made me wonder, asan na nga ba ang mahiwagang plywood ni Lola Nidora?



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