ORTIGOZA: How a Filipino politician buys votes

May 15, 2016 at 4:25 am Leave a comment

“Elective posts are for the rich only,” I told a mayoralty bet as he and his employees scan the names of their voters on the list and count the corresponding P1,000 for each of them after they evaluated the authenticity that the names are their supporters.
“The other day, there were six thousand voters here to get their P1000,” he told me at his house that was teeming with voters four days before the May 9 election.
“Grabe, that’s P6 million already!” I quipped.
“But we changed our system because policemen were hot on our trail. Our leaders instead come here and get the monies for distribution in the different villages. Everybody knows I give P1000. My opponent buys votes for P300 to P500”.
Both he and the opponent are successful businessmen.
“I want to beat him; I want to see how deep his financial chest is. Today, I will be going to the bank to withdraw P20 million,” he told me.
My friend cited that the P1000 he gave was not all from his pocket.
“Half of that is from my patron. He used to give P400 counterpart to the P400 that I give to a voter. But I told him my opponent buys vote for P500 each thus he acquiesced to the P500’.
He told me his patron provides only for the 40% of the 60,000 voters.
“60,000 voters bawasan mo ng 20% or 12,000 dahil hinde naman lahat boboto. It would become 48,000 bawasan mo ng 50% that would be 24,000.”
24 thousand voters multiplied by P1000 each equal 24 million pesos, he explained to me like when I was in Grade 6 learning addition, division, and multiplication.
He said he did not follow the 50% rule or 24 thousand voters .He still added another 20% or 12 thousand voters to make sure he gets more voters and more chances to win.
“Personal money ko na iyong P1000 sa 12 thousand voters. That’s another P12 million”.
Son of a gun, why these people spent P40 million for a job that gives only a P70 thousand monthly pay for three years? I asked myself.
“If it’s destiny to be assassinated hanggang diyan na lang ako (then my life stops there),” declared by presidential front runner Rodrigo Duterte when I asked him after the 3rd Presidential Debate in Dagupan City if he was not anxious that the military and the Central Intelligence Agency might kill him because he is friendly with the communists and is a threat to the U.S. military interest in Asia.
Lately, media reported that Francis Bundoc Besin called Bong Go, the chief aide of Duterte, that two assassins have been hired for ten million pesos to liquidate the presidential aspirant from powerful sniper rifles provided by principals in the police.
“If God wants me to be president I will be there,” he stressed.

“They are apprehensive because they said when you become president it means good bye to EDCA (Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement) and the military aid from the U.S. would stop?” I posed to him.
He questioned the importance of EDCA, a military alliance between the Philippines and the U.S., in case war explodes between the Philippines and China because the latter bars Filipino fishermen in
the Spratlys and Scarborough Shoals.
“Is America, is EDCA useful to us? Mag pakamatay ba sila sa atin (would the Americans die for us (in case of war against China ensued)?” he posed.
He was unfazed when I told him that there were rumblings in the military for a coup and assassination because of the jitters about the revocation of EDCA and the ceasing of the increasing flow of military aid from the Americans in case he becomes president of the Philippines.
Duterte in the past announced that he was willing to have bilateral talks and joint exploration agreement with Mainland China on the disputed territories claimed by the Philippines.
“Let’s see, why? Are we dependent on the U.S for our problem here? Is the United States ready to die with us for us in the Spratly issue?”
The U.S had history of colluding with local military men in ousting and even killing elected presidents or prime ministers of countries like in Chile, Guatemala, Dominican Republic, and others who threatened the interest of the Americans.
Together with Japan and Australia, the U.S presently have been wary about the growing military presence of China who built infrastructures and airports in the South China Sea – a sea lane for cargo ships that ferry five trillion of U.S dollars trade yearly.
Duterte’s vice presidential tandem Senator Alan Peter Cayetano told me that some of their friends and supporters cautioned the mayor to be careful what he said lest it can offend military ally America.
Cayetano heard the mayor said that the Philippines should be independent of her foreign policy and should protect it.
(You can read my selected columns at http://mortzortigoza.blogspot.com and articles at Pangasinan News Aro. You can send comments too at totomortz@yahoo.com)

Entry filed under: News.

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