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ROUGH CUTS | Vincent and Danny : Who’s the ‘Lucky One?’

Vic N. Sumalinog

FOR whom the gods’ support is really for? And we mean the political gods in Davao City; not any deity from this and that forest or enchanted reserve. 

     Actually we are referring to the political derby in the forthcoming congressional election in the second district of Davao City. Yes, who between candidates Vincent Garcia, reelectionist, and councilor Danilo Dayanghirang, second try, is the lucky one?

     We are raising this question because if we have to believe the posts of the two candidates on Facebook, each one seems to have clinched the endorsement of the city’s father and daughter dual city leadership.

     It is on a Facebook post that we saw Vincent Garcia’s hand being raised by Mayor Sara, the acknowledged head of the Hugpong ng Pagbabago, a spin-off (in name only?) political group from what was organized by the then Davao City Mayor Rodrigo R. Duterte, Sara’s father who had since been President of the Philippines six years ago. Any Tom, Dick and Harry need not be a political analyst to interpret such documented scene as endorsement by Mayor Sara of the incumbent congressman.

     On the other hand, Dayanghirang’s latest post includes photos of himself with President Duterte when His Excellency appeared to have greeted the councilor on his birthday. On the same post Dayanghirang also included a photo of himself while his hand was raised by mayor and now Vice Presidential candidate Sara.

     Who really between Garcia and Dayanghirang is the one having the luck of getting their hands raised by either Mayor Duterte or Duterte the President?

     In our cent’s worth of analysis it looks that Vincent is at the losing end of the bargain. He has not posted another photo with the President raising his hand. It was only Sara. But Dayanghirang seems to be enjoying an apparent advantage. He is able to have the President raised his hand, apparently a clear endorsement of his candidacy. And he has a photograph with the same opportunity with Sara the mayor. Definitely Dayanghirang can use that photograph as one big bragging right that could shake Vincent’s perceived advantage in their second district congressional tussle.

     But of course there are some reasons to take the scenario as tilting the favor on the second district councilor. Everybody is aware that with modern and highly sophisticated technology, pictures can be collaged and made to appear as taken on an “as is, where-is” basis. And neither Sara nor the President is denying the authenticity of the photos.

     If only for this basis Vincent need not fully despair because the possibility of Dayanghirang taking advantage of the new technology is not remote. As what was mentioned by Maria Ressa in her acceptance speech of the Nobel Prize award a few days back, the technology-driven cyber media is now getting to be the dominant new gatekeeper. And this same gatekeeper in the information eco-system is effectively used to manipulate contents and presentation in accordance with the interest of the information sharer.

     Going back to our original question, who indeed between Garcia and Dayanghirang is the recipient of Davao’s political gods’ favor? We can only surmise that the reality would only surface towards the wind-up of the election campaign season. After all, no backer will ever love to be identified with a loser or one who is likely to lose.


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