By JULLIE Y. DAZA
Following a younger voter’s example – his choices were based on “whom I don’t like” – let me say I am happy that certain losers lost certainly.
As I am happy that the five or six on my putative list made it to the finals despite the glitches, delays, and learned mistrust of Smartmatic. The big winner last Monday was Smartmatic, they got away with a load of mumbo-jumbo committed in the name of hi-tech efficiency. Efficiency? As the reelected Senator Koko Pimentel put it, they’ve been the operator of choice – ours, bah! – “in four elections,” and still they conduct themselves like greenhorns. How many more chances are we giving them to make up for their by-now legendary mistakes? Even married couples realize there’s no forever.
Comelec Chairman Sheriff Abas attributed the overnight delays to traffic jams in cyberspace, when transmission was choked by congestion. But isn’t that the job of those machines, precisely to cut through logjams otherwise caused by human, low-tech intervention? Should there be a Senate investigation, as Senator Pimentel suggested, the first question he should ask is if it’s a fact that Smartmatic is no longer allowed to operate in its own home base, Venezuela.
The air is still electric with the victory parties and congratulatory messages for winners in the tit-for-tat local elections. Political clans with their geriatric dynastic hold came crashing down. Thanks to young voters, or older voters who’ve had enough?
We have 12 just-elected senators, including a few new faces, but what do we do now with so much talent that surfaced and then sank? Such a waste of fresh, eager minds brimming with ideas for an easier life for 104 million Filipinos. I would’ve wanted Romy Macalintal to win for the sake of senior citizens, Jiggy Manicad for articulating the need to follow through media exposes of corruption in government. I would’ve wished Mindanao had given us a Muslim senator. Mar Roxas’ loss is a mystery! People of the Philippines don’t realize it yet but they will miss the awesome brainpower of Juan Ponce Enrile.
But as JPE says of his placing No. 22, “Such is life. You win some, you lose some. But life goes on.”