Saturday, April 20, 2013

How politicos woo voters

Re-electionist Vice Mayor Macanlalay (Red Shirt)
hobnobs with the crowd in a morning campaign
sortie under the blistering sun.
Re-electionist Calasiao Mayor Mark Roy Macanlalay (
Extreme Right) exchanges pleasantries with
the hoi polloi.

By Mortz C. Ortigoza

 DAGUPAN CITY – Candidates running in different elective offices have different campaign-styles to woo the voters.
                  Sta. Barbara

In Sta. Barbara, re-electionist Mayor Lito Zaplan said that he was already hitting the road at 5:00 in the morning for his daily “Kapihan sa Barangay (coffee with the villagers)” that lasts up to 9:00 in the morning. He said, this strategy give him a first- hand feel of the pulses of the people in the villages. The veteran politician said since the start of the 45 days campaign period in March 29 this year, he has already prepared new campaign jingles that played his name and accomplishments.
 “The cost of each jingle should be P15,000.00 for the composer and singer. But since the composer is the cousin of the mayor, he billed him only P8,000.00 for each of the jingle,” a supporter, who asked anonymity, commented. One jingle has the tune of pop hit “Abot Kamay ” and the other one a cha-cha song.
 Zaplan said, his mayoralty rival former Mayor Rey Velasco contents himself by using old jingles he used in the 2010 election.
 Another supporter said that the operators of passenger jeeps Zaplan leases every day billed him P700 per jeep exclusive of the fuel and the pay for the driver who would play the jingle as the vehicle snakes in the villages of the town so people can hear the song.
 The mayor said that after he hobnobbed with the hoi-polloi in the morning he and his political leaders do their respective chores elsewhere and meet again in the afternoon to do another round of husting in the boondocks.

In Mangaldan, a supporter of mayoralty bet Mayor Bernardo “Berex” Abalos lauds the latter for his organized political campaign. “He got no problem with our councilors and party members. We don’t quarrel unlike those in the ticket of (mayoralty bet) Bonafe “Bona” de Vera,” said Liza, an owner of a stall in the public market.
The source said that the party of de Vera is an epitome of what are anarchy and intrigue.
 She said that Cris Romero, son of the late Mangaldan Mayor Herminio Romero, who runs for the Sangguniang Panlalawigan has disarmed the village folks in the 4th District after the people have seen him up- close and personal with his down-to-earth attitude.
 “Parang si Mayor (Herminio) Romero din. Mapagkumbaba at simpleng tao lang”, the source quoted a resident upon seeing for the first time the younger Romero.
 Political leaders all over the district, who supported the candidacy of his father for the provincial board before his untimely demise in December last year, throw their support to Cris.
“Sayang, pinakamalaki ang Mangaldan (in terms of number of voters) sa apat na bayan ng Fourth District at si Cris Romero lang ang kandidato (for the board) na tumatakbo dito,” one supporter who asked anonymity quipped.

 In Manaoag, a supporter of mayoralty candidate Jeremy Agerico “Ming” Rosario said that the incumbent Board Member leave his house with his party at 8:00 to 9:00 in the morning to barnstorm the sitios in the villages. “Ming will return to his house at 12:00 noon.
He would take his lunch and take a nap up to 1:00 in the afternoon and then jump again for the sortie in the villages,” the supporter, who mans the gate at the residence of Rosario, said.
 He said, every Wednesday indigents go to the house of the Board Member for free medical consultations, medicines, and free reading glasses. “Ming and his wife are medical doctors. They have been helping the poor in the 4th District since six years ago”.
Calasiao re-electionist Mayor Mark Roy Macanlalay and his father re-electionist Vice Mayor Roy T. Macanlalay were already out from their homes at 11:00 in the morning of April 11, 2012 and visiting every nook and corner of Barangay Nagsaing.
 They were unmindful of the scorching sun. They were handshaking and tapping the back shoulders of their constituents. Unknown to the Macanlalays, that day was historic for the Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA). PAGASA forecaster Connie Dadivas said that at 2:00 in the afternoon of that day, the weather office in neighboring Dagupan City has recorded a 38.0 degrees Celsius. It was an all time record as the hottest so far this year and since 1911 in the Philippines. At 12:00 noon, the Macanlalays, their candidates for the town’s council, and supporters ate lunch together at the house of a supporter with the viands composed of fried tilapia, fried galungong, pork adobo, vegetables and mineral water.
 “We were doing this routine since I became a mayor in the 1990s,” Vice Mayor Roy said.
 He explained that in this kind of sortie their supporters distribute flyers while he and his ticket mixed with the townspeople and exchange pleasantries with them including the taking of notes of their grievances. “We take a break of our sortie at 12:00 noon up to 1:00 in the afternoon because it is already an unholy hours. Magagalit na sila. Nagpapahinga na ang mga ta-o sa oras na iyon,” the vice mayor said.

The elder Macanlalay has been clad in a signature party collared red shirt while his son Mayor Mark sports a light green t-shirt. Both have towel in their hand they used to cover their head against the blistering tropical sun and to wipe their sweat out.
“We go back in the road at 3 in the afternoon in another village and do the same routine and activities of the sortie”.

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