Presidential aspirant and former Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. has maintained a large lead in the presidential race polls because of his “simple” pitch for unity, a political analyst said Monday.
In an interview over PTV-4, Dr. Froilan Calilung, who teaches political science at the University of Santo Tomas (UST), explained that this year’s elections have deepened the nation’s divide.
“Right now, our countrymen are sick and tired already of the divisiveness that has played Philippine politics for a very, very long time already. In the midst of this, pumasok naman yung mensahe nung kabilang kampo na pagkakaisa (they entered the message of unity),” he said.
Calilung acknowledged although such motherhood statements failed to spell out Marcos’ clear platforms, Filipinos are easily persuaded by motherhood statements of unification because they are easy to digest.
“Maaring hindi nga po klaro sa atin ano ba talaga yung mga plataporma, agenda ng ating frontrunner pero napakadali ho kasing intindihin yung konsepto ng unity. Very plain, very simple kaya maaring ito yung dahilan kaya sila ay talagang nahikayat (While it is true that the platform remains unclear, the unity agenda of our frontrunner is very easy to understand. Very plain, very simple that is why many have been persuaded),” he added.
He said Marcos’ decision to skip debates and refusal to engage in negative campaigning is “a really good decision” because Filipinos always root for the underdog.
“Dito nga pinapakita ni BBM na instead na sumagot, instead na makipagsabyan sa mga alegasyon (This is where BBM shows that instead of responding to allegations), they just chose to be focused on their own campaign, mobilize resources,” he said.
He also said Filipinos were generally discontented by the failures of the post-Edsa regime.
“Maaring hindi na nagustuhan yung mga nangyari after EDSA (Perhaps they did not like what happened after Edsa). So they’re actually looking for something else, something different,” he said.
In contrast, he said Vice President Leni Robredo’s campaign “did not resonate well with the public” due to her declaration of wanting to thwart a Marcos comeback.
“Maliwanag from the get-go yung kampanya ni Vice President Robredo medyo nandoon po siya talaga sa pagbato sa kung anu-anong alegasyon sa personality, sa pamilya, sa political background ng ating frontrunner, si BBM (It is clear from the get-go that the campaign of Vice President Robredo focused on hurling allegations on his personality, his family, and the political background of our frontrunner, BBM),” he added.
Calilung said Robredo could have had a bigger shot at beating Marcos if her endorsements from different sectors came much earlier.
“They showed yung kanilang puwersa mga bandang Marso na (They had a show of force in March). I think if it could have come in a bit earlier, I think mas nakatulong talaga doon sa kampanya (it would have helped their campaign),” he said.
While Robredo’s house-to-house campaign is admirable, he said they also came a little too late.
“Ang naging tingin nga dito ng marami sa ating mga kababayan is a move of desperation na lang nga e (Many of our countrymen think it is just a move of desperation),” he said.
Regardless of the election results, he said Robredo’s movement of volunteerism is proof that she is still the country’s most powerful opposition figure.
“Nung patapos ang 2016 kasi, hindi natin nakita kung sino ba talaga yung ulo ng opposition, hindi naging maliwanag. Pero) By the end of 2016, we could not identify who headed the opposition, it was not clear. But) right now it could gravitate talaga (really) within or around the persona of the Vice President and we could mobilize this force,” he added.
Source: Philippines News Agency