Friday, April 13, 2007

Voters and Counters

Recent Philippines history is the standing witness that there have been certain elections which were anything but honest and credible. Such is especially true in conjunction with the 2004 national elections.

Their eventual and lasting results have become rather predictable. There is division among the people. Public disgust and distrust continue to haunt the citizens. There is persistent socio-political instability productive of poverty and underemployment. Such public adversities adamantly refuse to disappear notwithstanding all glorious and repeated claims to the contrary by the present administration.

There appears to be one signal truth which is a distinct teaching that such basically dishonest and unacceptable elections have brought to fore. It is good to point out this reality in the Philippine elections—irrespective or whether those now holding political power and influence accept it or consider it pure garbage. There is both wisdom and prudence in knowing the truth and remembering the teaching.

This: in elections held in this country, it is not really the voters and the number of their votes that make political candidates win or lose. Rather, it is the counters of the votes who make candidates as winners or losers. In other words, it is good for a candidate to have many voters. It is however best for them to have good counters.

It is good for political parties to proclaim their grand platforms and for their candidates to mount vigorous and unrelenting campaigns. To spend millions for their tri-media advertisements, to shake millions of hands, smile left and right, and to convince as many people as possible to vote for them when election day comes.

But at the end of the day, what will make them actually win or lose are the three following considerations:

  • Who are their counters from the precinct to the COMELEC levels.
  • Which one of the two or three principals in-charge of the counters have they contracted.
  • How much are they willing to pay to all the counters for every thousand votes taken away from others and credited to their names instead.

The Philippines is not first in corruption all over the Asian continent—for nothing!

13 April 2007