Mayor Rodrigo Duterte,  who  is fondly called “Digong”,  has been  reported to have already decided to run as presidential candidate for the coming 2016 elections. This is taken by most everyone in Davao—or say, the entire Mindanao electorate— as a happy incidence.  Already, his supporters and fans have prepared symbolic events to launch  his long-awaited bid for the highest post of the land.   One of these is the “balloon sharing” event on November 30 in Peoples’ Park.

The decision of the good Mayor to push through his candidacy was made after the Senate Electoral Tribunal ruled in favor of presidential bet Senator Grace Poe whose citizenship was questioned in a disqualification case.   It was reported that Mayor Duterte  could not countenance a Philippine president who is an American at heart or who may be more American than Filipino in sentiment and attitude.

Well, this is a salutary act of Mayor Digong, as a pro-Filipino stance if it is premised on a more perspicacious view of the phenomenon.  If indeed Senator Grace Poe is inclined to favor American interests, that would be to the continued misfortune of  the Filipino citizenry, granting that she would win in the elections.   But, that is not a foolproof reading of the woman senator’s political consciousness. It is hard to fathom one’s political and even cultural sensibilities by the mere accident of citizenship or lack of residency.  Who knows but that if elected she may yet be the Filipino head of state in our history to make a difference?

The question might very well be as follows:  Who among the presidential candidates is inclined to be more pro-Filipino than  pro-American?

For what has been the state of affairs as far as the historical facts revolving  the Philippine president’s political acts and deeds are concerned through all these years?  To trace the history of the Philippine presidency is like arguing against Mayor Duterte’s opinion of Senator Grace Poe as shortsighted if not an inadvertent misreading of our political history as far as the  political and official conduct  of our national  leaders  is concerned.

And here’s the historical lens through which we can view and measure the  worth of our Presidents since the beginning.  Since 1946,  after the founding of the Philippine Republic, until 2015, the terminal stage of Noynoy Aquino’s term.

There has not been a deviation from the legacy of puppetry to American interests that the first president of the Philippine Republic Manuel A. Roxas has bequeathed to the Filipino nation until the incumbent Chief Executive Noynoy Aquino.  Our nationhood has always been an ignominious canine subservience to the dictates of the US imperialist interests since the start until the present.  Because of  the continuous accommodation of American interests by the succession of presidents who have ruled our country, ours has remained a stagnant economy and a condition of extreme poverty of the majority of our people.

The frequent elections have only proved to be farcical shows whose only function has been to perpetuate the same brand of leadership at the helm of power.  The EDSA revolt that toppled a Marcos dictatorship that reigned for fourteen (14) years was only to turn back the wheels of history to the pre-1972 state of affairs.   The same representatives of  the ruling  class dynasties are wielding state power by way of standing  on the backs of the majority population  who have continuously endured the concomitants of underdevelopment and backwardness for sixty-nine (69) years now.  Nothing has changed!   Nothing doing!

On account of this rabid puppetry to the American imperialist  interests, crisis after crisis occur as a vicious cycle in our existence as a nation. This is a phenomenon that does not seem to have factored in the consciousness of our candidates to the presidential post.  None of them has begun to nurture the thought of veering away from puppetry.  It’s all for puppetry in the arena of politics.

But now, here comes a man from the southern Mindanao in the person of Mayor Rodrigo Duterte.  In the years that he has held the “manibela” of the mayorship of Davao City in its journey to the future, he has demonstrated a rare attitude of concern and deference to the welfare of his constituency  over and above  that of foreigners.  He is averse to giving preferential treatments to foreigners under and within the legal constraints the Philippine political system  imposes on the entire state  machinery.  In other words, his brand of  leadership is a creative and effective application of  the legal superstructure  in the interest of democracy and social justice. The people of Mindanao has seen  in  him a unique style of leadership long needed for the entire Filipino nation, most especially by his advocacy and espousal of  “Federalism” in lieu of the inutile Presidential system.

If the prime consideration to disqualify presidential candidate is by virtue of one’s foreign (US) a citizenship or his/her propensity to adopt and advance the interests of foreigners (not only US interests) then all these TRAPO politicians trained to be puppets of the US should be out rightly  disqualified!    And who are  they? Just  look at their record of  accommodation to the interests of the foreigners.  In the economic field, what are their preferential treatments inclined to as far as business undertakings; in this country is concerned?  Is it to  the foreign corporations or to the Filipino entrepreneurs?

To give an ongoing and hot-brewing case  as  example:    Has any of the candidates taken up the issue of the Lumads being massacred and divested of their ancestral land  rights  in favor of foreign mining companies?  And this issue has been brought to the heart of the country through the 700-strong Lumads’ Manilakbayan almost at the threshold of Malacañang.

Come to think of it?   Has Noynoy Aquino strained his ears to listen to their clamor and demands?  Never!  Does any of  the present presidential bets so much as lift a finger to touch  on the hottest issue of the hour and make a stand?  Perhaps, it is just too hot for anyone of them to dip a finger lest it exposes their adherence to the dictates of foreign economic  interests in abandonment of Filipino Lumad well-being and welfare?  Or, in the case of Mar Roxas, the fear that it might bring to light his thoughtless  toeing  the line of Noynoy’s “matuwid na daan” and Oplan Bayanihan?

If the prime criterion for the candidates’ qualification to the presidency  is to be pegged on the candidate’s attitude and adherence to foreign interest—and not  merely on the matter of citizenship—then, neither Mar Roxas, nor Binay, nor Grace Poe—would stand to be qualified for President.

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