After a sumptuous
dinner on December 31,
we gathered at the sala to
watch “Patay Na si Hesus.”
All of us saw the Bisaya
family comedy before. Despite all the hardships and
challenges, 2020 forced
Filipinos to spend most of
their time since March at
the house together. Gathering around to watch
something we enjoyed as
a family felt a fitting finale
for 2020. Now, we look forward to 2021 stronger.
Despite the seeming disarray at the top, I assume we will
get the COVID-19 vaccine this year. I expect Malacañang and
other power players in Congress would move mightily to ensure most Filipinos would be vaccinated by the time candidates file their candidacy certificates by October.
But let us assume the world would not reboot back to exactly like pre-COVID times. The months of quarantine changed
the world’s population. We experienced the joys of being with
family. While we can return to the office and physically interact
once again, we also learned working from home. The population
and business transformed digitally. We order food and even do
groceries online. We conduct small and large meetings online.
In the US, majority of Americans learned to campaign
and vote virtually. In November, they finally ended the reign
of an ultra-Rightist President who messed up the superpower’s anti-COVID response.
New Year Survey
The surprising canard of a survey started tongues wagging
on New Year’s Day. As expected, DDS trolls rejoiced while the
growing anti-Duterte circles criticized “False Asia.” I looked at
the survey on presidentiables as a clever ploy to set the agenda at the start of 2021. Of course, I do not believe the survey
was accurate. It was a public relations ploy. Imagine, pro and
anti-administration partisans debating whether Davao Mayor
Inday Sara is number one or not. The so-called survey makes
her top of mind on New Year’s Day. Brayt nga palihi.
The same “False Asia” survey positioned Senator Manny
Pacquiao as the number one choice for senator. After becoming the PDP-Laban boss last year, the Pacman became a presidentiable in the lips of many. The survey obviously seeks to cut
the Pambansang Kamao to size. Pang-senador lang.
However, my friend Tonton Antogop remains unperturbed. Tonton, the secretary general of the Manny Pacquiao
for President Movement (MPPM), expressed confidence in
the grassroots enthusiasm for the Pacman to run. Apparently, he believes more in what he sees as they go around the
countryside than the so-called False Asia survey. Tonton says
the Pacman plans to do rounds of consultations with Cebu
leaders. We will have the chance of seeing how Cebuanos engage with Pacquiao this week.
(Emmanuel N. Mongaya is a member of the Political Officers League of the Philippines. He is also co-founder and
director for strategic PR of PRWorks Inc. Contact him @
anol_cebu in Twitter)