HOW far is Davao City from reaching its targeted herd immunity in the ongoing battle against the dreaded Corona Virus Disease (CoViD)? If we have to believe the announcement made by the spokesperson of the local IATF we are nearing it. According to the announcement as of this week we have already comfortably breached the one million mark of the city’s population being fully vaccinated.
That is indeed very welcome news. The spokeswoman said that the attainment of that level is due mainly to the cooperation of the people in the city and the innovative means with which the vaccination activities are being carried out.
It was also learned from the local IATF that the city government of Davao is expecting to increase the number of vaccinated residents when the nationwide vaccination days next week will be rolled out. This is however dependent on how much cooperation will the various local government units extend to the gargantuan efforts.
We can only hope that Mayor Inday Sara Duterte-Carpio can still spare enough time to make sure that the vaccination activities in her city will be carried out in accordance with procedures and its desired objective.
As we said earlier the possibility of the local elections in Davao City getting exciting and even hotly contested could now be seen in the political radar. What with the sudden change in the complexion of the local polls with the unexpected catapulting of Baste as the replacement candidate for Mayor? Never mind the post of vice mayor. There is no challenger to the administration candidate for the second highest position in the city, the Honorable Melchor Quitain Jr. The luck of former Vice Mayoralty candidate Baste Duterte, now candidate for Mayor, is rubbed in on the former.
What could possibly be the source of excitement in the mayoral contest? It is actually the erosion of the belief that the Duterte dominance in Davao City is not breakable. Yes, where before those who raised their challenge were virtual unknown or wanting in charisma compared to any Duterte candidate, this election season could be different. It is because of this turn of events. Then re-electionist Mayor Sara who was like a granite wall in her position, now aspires for a national office. Taking her place is younger brother Baste. His relatively being a newbie in politics may have put the Duterte myth on the brink. Why, because he has a worthy challenger in former third district congressman Ruy Elias Lopez, who is himself a chip of his father, the late mayor Elias B. Lopez. And who was the late Davao City chief executive Lopez? He was one in the triumvirate that almost literally pushed Duterte to the mayoralty of the city at a time when the torch of the Cory Aquino magic was carried in Davao by the late OIC Mayor Zafiro Respicio, a Makilala, North Cotabato-born student leader in the city. From then on Duterte the father seemed unstoppable in holding continuously the reins of the city government. But the one who was visibly honed up to succeed the father was clearly Inday Sara who so easily learned the ropes of the trade. However, with Sara’s pursuance of a higher political dream she may be leaving behind a less-experientially prepared brother.
This can become an opportunity for a possibly reluctant candidate who, at the time of the filing of his certificate of candidacy, it was a quixotic run against a seemingly undefeatable re-electionist Mayor Sara.
Of course it is still a case of tearing down the belief in the often-quoted ‘Chinaman’s chance’ for Ruiy Lopez to win in the mayoral contest. Baste still has his father’s Duterte surname. He has the resources, the guidance of his father and sister on how to play the game. Those are factors clearly to Baste’s advantage.
But this time however, the adage on not having even a “Chinaman’s chance” of winning may not anymore be overly haunting on mayoral challenger Ruy Lopez.
That is, if he will maximize the use of whatever available resources he can muster for the entire period of the campaign. And if he still remembers the ways with which his late father conducted his campaign during his time, he must use it and introduce innovations that are called for by the changing times, especially on the aspect of communicating messages these days of modern technology.
Above all, we believe, he has to bear no semblance of getting intimidated and just remain being one among Davaoenos regardless of their status and origin. Belongingness helps get support.
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