The foundations of the Philippine government lie in its roots, in the smallest units of governance found in our towns. Barangay officials are comprised of men and women who are the people’s neighbors, faces that they know best. These officials know the heart of their towns more than any public servant of the country simply through sheer proximity and familiarity, and this affords them a kind of connection other leaders could never forge with their constituents.
To further postpone barangay elections and opt to instead appoint the barangay officials means to impinge on the people’s right to vote and choose their leaders. It is worrisome that the President should even contemplate such a rash decision that encroaches dangerously into authoritarian ideologies reminiscent of those harbored and exemplified by the former dictator Ferdinand Marcos.
We urge him to rethink this particular move. Let the people choose who they wish to serve them.