It is that time when we close the current year and get ready to welcome the new one. As we look to the coming year, one topic invariably dominates all conversations: the 2016 elections.
People ask who they should elect as the next president and vice president. They ask who deserve to occupy the senatorial and congressional seats.
For the most part, I see frustration and cynicism. For many of those I speak with, there is no clear forerunner in their minds. They feel they are forced to choose from a lot that lacks the right mix of integrity and competence. Some candidates are perceived to possess an excess in competence but are seen as sorely lacking in integrity. Others are assessed to be the reverse—loaded with integrity and good intentions but short on experience and capability. Still, other candidates are assessed to be gravely deficient in both dimensions.
Further, there is the nagging question of whether the Comelec is ready and able to conduct clean and orderly elections when as early as now, there are already allegations of padding of voters lists.
The exasperation of the Filipino voter has been expressed to me in the words “nakakapagod na maging Pilipino.”
Mga Kapamilya, in May of 2016, each of us will be called to serve our country by casting our votes in the national elections.
No one can say who the right choices are. Only time will tell based on the accomplishments of those who will ultimately be confirmed by the Comelec.
There is really only one thing we know now—each of us must vote according to his conscience.
Cast your vote for the people whom you believe will best serve our nation. Do not select a candidate merely because you might have some connection with him, however distant that might be, or he is from the same province or he is a famous actor or athlete.
No matter how immaterial it might seem, your vote will count. Your vote will either put the right person in place or prevent the wrong person from entering office.
How you vote will determine how you serve the Filipino.
We cannot lose hope in the Filipino. We are the Filipino. What we do determines the future of the Filipino family and the future of the Filipino child.
All I can say is, competence is available to anyone who chooses to learn. Integrity, on the other hand, is available only to those who take the much more demanding and rigorous choice of consistently living a life of values.
An advanced Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and your families, my dear Kapamilya.
Eugenio Lopez III - Chairman, ABS-CBN Corp.