Tuesday, March 28, 2023

Philippine election limited to Marcos, rights defender

MANILA, Philippines ( Associated Press) — More than three decades after a largely peaceful “People Power” insurgency overthrew Philippine dictator Ferdinand Marcos, his son and namesake are top picks in most voter-preference polls. Some of the key issues in Monday’s vote:

what’s at stake

The victory of Ferdinand Marcos Jr. would be a stunning reversal of the 1986 pro-democracy uprising that catapulted his father into global notoriety. Many Filipinos are aware of the atrocities and plunderings of human rights that unfolded under the larger Marcos dictatorship, possibly due to any perceived threat to democracy or property confiscated by Marcos Jr. from his family as illegally obtained property. I will push back against attempting to recover.

The election winner inherits enormous problems, including the coronavirus pandemic, deep poverty and unemployment, hyperinflation caused by skyrocketing oil and gas prices, decades-old rebellions and inflamed political divisions. He may also face calls to prosecute incumbent President Rodrigo Duterte for his bloody crackdown on illegal drugs. The International Criminal Court is investigating the murders of thousands of mostly poor petty drug suspects as a possible crime against humanity.


Ferdinand Marcos Jr.

The 64-year-old son of the late dictator, a former provincial governor, congressman and senator, is making the Marcos family’s most impressive attempt ever to retake the presidency. His mother, Imelda Marcos, tried unsuccessfully to retake the seat of power twice after returning with her children from exile in the United States to the Philippines, where her husband died in 1989.

Marcos Jr. has defended his father’s legacy and vehemently refuses to apologize and accept the atrocities and plunderings that took place during the dictatorship. Married to a lawyer with whom she has three sons, she has stayed away from controversies, including past tax convictions and the Marcos family’s refusal to pay a large estate tax. Throughout his campaign, he firmly stuck to the slogan of national unity. He denies allegations that he financed a year-long social media campaign that used online trolls to smear opponents and whitewash the Marcos family’s checkered history, daring critics to “show me one.”


Lenny Robredo

As an economics student at the University of the Philippines in the 1980s, Lenny Robredo became involved in mass protests that led to the ouster of the elder Marcos. The 57-year-old also took up the law and won a seat in the House of Representatives in 2013 in her first foray into politics after her husband, a respected politician, died in a plane crash in 2012. He defeated Marcos Jr. The 2016 vice presidential race with a narrow margin in his first electoral face. His advocacy focuses partly on protecting human rights and empowering the poor partly by teaching them their legal rights.

The daughter of a trial court judge, Robredo is not one of the prominent families that have dominated Philippine politics for generations, and the campaign is run as an independent run by a network of volunteers. As opposition vice-president, who was elected separately from Duterte, he mostly condemned the killings of poor drug suspects as part of his action, angering the cruel-talking leader and straining his relations for years. made stressful. The mother of three has been cited for her integrity and lifestyle away from the traps of power – she regularly traveled alone by bus to her home province as a Congress member.


other claimants

Eight other presidential candidates have been left far behind in pre-election polls, including 43-year-old former boxing star Manny Pacquiao, who vowed to build homes for the poor and lock corrupt politicians in “mega-prisons”. . Manila Mayor Isco Moreno, a 47-year-old former TV heartthrob, relied on his rags-to-strength life story and the public’s awe on his massive cleanup of the capital. Former National Police Chief Sen. Panfilo Laxon, 73, has promised to continue harnessing his investigative skills to expose major government corruption.


to secure votes

In addition to the presidency, more than 18,000 government positions will be contested in the elections, including half of the 24-member Senate, more than 300 seats in the House of Representatives, as well as provincial and local offices in the archipelago of more than 109. Million Philippines. Around 67 million have registered to vote. Voting will take place over 13 hours on Monday, a one-hour extension intended to compensate for slow queues caused by social distancing and other coronavirus safety measures. After polling stations are closed, thousands of counting machines across the country will send unofficial results for tally. A partial, informal calculation can reveal a clear winner within hours, but a close race can take much longer. Official counting and campaigning by Congress can take weeks.

Thousands of police and military personnel have been deployed by communist and Muslim insurgents given the long-term risk and history of often bloody family and political rivalry in rural areas. In 2009, gunmen deployed by the family of the then governor of southern Maguindanao province killed 58 people, including 32 journalists, in an attack on an election convoy that shocked the world.


Nation World News Desk
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