A candidate’s capability to lead should weigh more than anything else when Filipino voters choose their next president in 2022. The United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) stressed this Tuesday when it called on the people to weigh their choice of a president very carefully in the forthcoming 2022 national elections.
“We are in the midst of a crisis like no other in the history of three generations of Filipinos born after the Second World War,” UNA Secretary-General Atty. Jesus “Clint” Aranas said.
Beyond competence, the party official said, is the need for a leader with “genuine compassion, courage and moral fortitude, who will not be beholden to vested interests,” he added. “He should be concerned with the greater good of the poor who constitute the majority of our people”.
“Capability, not mere popularity; doers not charlatans who will surround himself with the best and brightest of the race and not bootlickers,” he added.
Citing the effects of the pandemic and the longest lockdown in the world, Aranas cited the ballooning national debt, which has reached close to 13 trillion pesos, almost double than all previous administrations combined had borrowed.
Speaking on behalf of UNA President Jejomar Binay, Atty. Aranas, a tax expert and lawyer who once headed the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) as its president and general manager, cited low and still decreasing government revenues due to the lockdown and the resulting closure of so many medium and small businesses.
“Based on national government data, the unemployment rate in 2020 reached 17.7 per cent of the workforce, meaning some 7.3 million jobless Filipinos, further exacerbated by more than 300,000 OFW being laid off and still counting,” Aranas observed.
Since our OFW are one of the major pillars of the economy, this, plus the loss of domestic jobs in tourism, services, even manufacturing, requires a leadership that will “save the nation and prevent chaos and unrest”.
Aranas said the next President will “lead the country and the people in navigating across the perilous seas of social and economic hazards never before seen or felt since the wartime occupation of our country — this is the leader we must have”.
“Hungry people know no law”, Aranas added.
“We must therefore choose a president in 2022, who will need to file his certificate of candidacy by October this year, a scant nine months from now, who has the competence, adequate experience, and vision to undertake difficult decisions and doable solutions to stave off mass hunger and despair,” he said.