Our right

Fil C. Sionil Fil C. Sionil

Tomorrow, last-ditch efforts will be made by candidates for seats in the Senate and the House of Representatives, including party-lists, and local executives to beguile, charm and win the votes of more than 62 million voters, 19 million, or roughly more than 30 percent of whom, are mellinials.

Good thing, it’s a weekend. Public offices and some private ones are closed. Still, for motorists, brace for a bit of a traffic gridlock because of the holding of “Miting de Avance” that provide the last opportunity for candidates to explain their stance and principles and goals in seeking a public seat.

It will be all quiet on the waterfront the following day, Sunday. After 40 days of grueling, back-breaking campaign, candidates may now try to relax.

But my educated guess is that the candidates, and their supporters will continue to have a sleepless night as they address their chances of winning.

The lyrics of Phil Collins’ 1984 hit song One More Night... “One more night, one more night ooh, ooh,... been trying so long to let you know” may define the feeling of the candidates now. Skittish. Jittery. On edge!

Monitoring trends in social media (Socmed), across all platforms – Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Whatsapp, and Viber, is an effective source of news, a gauge on how the voters view certain candidates.

Beyond its wellspring of information, Socmed has become the bedrock of discourse, intrigue and disagreements. The heated exchange of opinions, sometime, leads to broken friendships, relations and ties severed.

Recognizing that Socmed is a powerful tool in expressing an idea, this may be a bit late but a friendly reminder is to just take a stand sans the emotional upheaval and avoid being carried away to the extreme, which may result in cutting off and throwing to the waste bin years of friendship.

It’s the freedom of speech we’re exercising. I’ve observed and noticed the passion and sensitive of friends every time discussions on the candidates they are supporting arise.

I’ve rounded up a number of personalities on their take about the mid-term elections and whether the results will impact on the conduct of doing business moving forward. The response is mixed- some fairly positive, others nonchalant.
Sharing some:

“It depends on the outcome. Although, I suspect, it’s business as usual. Politics will be politics.”

“The campaign spending provides a lift in consumer spending. If President Duterte’s endorsed candidates win, it will reaffirm the President’s mandate and will allow him to pursue further reforms ‘til 2022.”

“It will not affect doing business too much on the national level. This is because it will still be the same people running government departments. But the change in local leaders, particularly, the mayors will have effect on business. That mayor can change the tax policies of the locality, policies, planning, permits and licenses requirements. A new mayor can change the way business is being done in the locality.”

It’s a three-day weekend. But on Monday, let’s not forget to exercise our right to suffrage.

Talkback to me at sionil731@gmail.com