The upcoming fight for the Presidency will be won in the provinces, so having a strong, well-organized and funded party machinery is very crucial to deliver the message and to secure the votes to win the presidential election.
Considering present demographics, media reach, and social mind-set, serious candidates have written off key cities and the elites. Especially when one considers the limitations brought about by COVID-19… lockdowns, limited mobility, poor media reach, and funding difficulties of their political organization… the master of these key points will put any winning hand in-play.
Irrespective of the candidate, what will be needed is a message that will capture the self-interest of the masa (masses). They comprise the bulk of the votes that will make the next president.
As far as voters are concerned, past Presidential contests have been a choice between the lesser of given evils. No president, in recent times, has delivered on their promises or improved the quality of life of the common man.
The common perception is that our political leaders only enriched themselves, their family, and their close political associates.
To address the voter’s political cynicism, a candidate needs to offer something the voters can identify with to be one with the president. Presidential candidates need to impress upon the voters that they can and will improve their quality of life.
To avoid a repeat scenario of more of the same, the voters, in turn, will need to reorient their voting consideration as to who among the candidates can and will improve their quality of life within the next presidential term of office and junk their personality-based vote orientation.
Voters need to make a well-considered choice, they should transpose their personality-based vote consideration and adopt the frame of mind of an employer, interviewing applicants for the job of president. To improve on their past voter experience, voters will need to discern and choose the candidate wisely, the candidate with whom the voter will entrust the management of our country for the next six years with the goal of improving one’s quality of life.
We all need to demand better quality candidates for national leadership to be able to hope for the one that can and will bring us all to a better place. To this end, the political parties have failed us miserably — winnability is their only consideration. Country or the people’s future hasn’t crossed their minds in their selection process. The welfare of voters only comes to mind to get their vote. The next time voters will be thought of is when election season comes around again.
All the present political talk is centered around candidates’ personalities, qualifications, faults and character. They have little bearing on what a voter can expect or will get in the final analysis to sway the voters to win their support. Nothing is offered as a program commitment to extract our voters out of perpetual poverty, a deteriorating economic quagmire due to our past political leaders who have consistently put self-interest ahead of our country and its people.
As far as the masses are concerned, all politicians are the same — showman, liars, thieves. Leaders who are surrounded/supported by thieves and opportunists who will, in the end, make their lives more miserable. Feeling entitled, having supported the candidate, none of these supporters feel that they owe anything to the voters.
For as long as our presidential campaign remains to be a personality-oriented contest, the winning vote for the next president of our country will remain to be a choice between the lesser evils.
Unless our voters shift their voting consideration from a personality-driven vote to the posture of an Employer hiring an Employee Manager who is expected to deliver an improved quality of life for the voter within the next presidential term, it will just be more of the same. Their lives and misery that they now endured will just continue to be exacerbated no matter who wins the contest.
Our masa should not be short-sighted. They need to be kind to themselves. As voters, they need to see that there is something in it for themselves in order to be responsible and to make an intelligent vote. A vote to improve the economic stature of the country, themselves, and their family when hiring the next President of the Philippines for the next six years.
The next President must be able to articulate and commit to a staffing standard and qualification of people he will recruit to help him deliver his plan to mature his commitment.
Otherwise, we will end up with incompetent, do-nothing supporters who will be there only to enrich and aggrandize themselves in their new positions. If that will be the case, we can all forget the President’s commitment milestones to improve the quality of life to benefit the people.
Before a voter casts his/her vote, they must be convinced that the candidate knows the job, understands the problems of the nation, has the sincerity to make a believable commitment, the wherewithal to deliver on a clear plan that is doable to address poverty and improve the quality of life for all.
This article reflects the personal opinion of the author and does not reflect the official stand of the Management Association of the Philippines or MAP.
Romeo G. David is a member of the MAP National Issues Committee and chair and president of BNL Management Corp.