The watchables

Published January 29, 2022, 12:05 AM

by Jullie Y. Daza


Jullie Y. Daza

Just because there are 12 senators to be elected come May 9, the race has not attracted or generated half the excitement, the noise, or the scrutiny that’s its due.

The senatorial candidates come from the ranks of reelectionists, returnees, and new faces. It’s the hopeful first-timers that give this sector of the elections a spark of curiosity, like a sabungero going to the cockpit with two roosters, one a veteran and the other a newbie – which is more watchable?   

Among the newcomers on my “watchables” list are a police general and two former cabinet secretaries. If this sounds like an A-list, their names suggest experience, credibility, and trustworthiness.

Police General Guillermo Eleazar was mainstream media’s favorite Chief PNP, although he stayed at his post for six months only, when the mandatory retirement age hit him at 56. Will this too-young-to-be-put-out-to-pasture provision be up for amendment under his signature as Senator Eleazar?

The general’s tag line, SIGA, stands for Sipag (hard work) and Galing (skill, talent). He’s on the ticket of another hardworking ex-general, Ping Lacson, who let out a little secret recently that their team has the support of men in uniform, past and present.

In the middle of the list, in alphabetical order, Gibo Teodoro, a civilian who headed DND under a previous administration. Think what he could’ve done with billions to spend on modernization – arms and ammunition, flying machines, rescue air and sea craft, hefty pay increases – if such gargantuan funds had been available then.  

After his stint in government, Gibo returned to private business as a lawyer and was at one time independent director of a leading conglomerate.

Last on the short list is the youngest, Mark Villar, 43, whose name is impossible to be mentioned without a kilometer-long account of how many bridges, highways, farm-to-market roads, schools and classrooms, isolation facilities, evacuation centers, flood control structures, etc. that he fulfilled under Build Build Build without a day or a centavo wasted.   

The unassuming candidate is too modest to talk about himself, too shy to make a noise in the din of the campaign. Wouldn’t it be folly not to put such a hard worker in the Senate to work for us? If not words, let his work speak.