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Election Time in the Philippines

May 10, 2010 is a major election day in the Philippines. This year is a Presidential Election. In the Philippines, a Presidents term is for six years and can hold only two successive terms. Because the current President, President Maria Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, has held two terms, she cannot run again for President.

In the Philippines, they have eleven Major Political parties and many minor parties plus a group called a party list. With this, the ballets will be filled with long lists for each office for election.

Here in the Philippines, the Vice President is someone that is elected, not like in America where it is a political team where the President and Vice President run under the same ballot.  It is the same for Mayor and Vice Mayor and I would guess every political level with a Vice seat available.

Around town and probably all over the Philippines there are signs, banners and flags covering any area allowed. Many fences, walls, poles, and any other place they can find are covered with political campaign signs. Some are nailed or pasted to walls or strung across streets.  Trucks, Jeepneys and even peddle carts have political campaign signage.

Then there are the Jeepneys driving around town with loud speakers blaring campaign slogans. There are political rallies and of course hand shaking.

Now you might think, this is the same in the U.S., but to me, if is like many other things here, I is over done compared to what I am used to seeing in the States.

What I am curious, after Election Day, how long it will take to remove all this stuff from all over the country. In many places, you cannot see through wire fences since they are completely covered with these signs.

Even though I will be back in America by Election Day, I will be curious to see who

won the election. Because I am not a citizen of the Philippines, I have no place to give any

of my opinions or feelings of the political race here and it is actually illegal for a non-Philippine citizen to discuss the candidates openly for or against any one running.

13 Responses to “Election Time in the Philippines”

  1. Tom says:

    Unless they changed the constitution the president can serve only one term. She served part of Eraps term and there was a legal decision by the supreme court that allowed her to run on her own.

    The signs won’t be removed. They will stay where they are until they fall off or are covered over. (Or an opponents supporter rips them down)

    I wouldn’t get involved in Philippine politics even if it was legal. It can be very dangerous. Especially around election time.

    • Bruce says:

      Thank you for that clarification, I looked and actually did not find that info. I will not discuss politics here, as you say it can be dangerous, especially if your a foreigner and it is illegal during campaign time.

  2. SteveinDavao says:

    We were talking about the signs just last weekend. They are a blight on the landscape and a real eyesore. I’m afraid Tom’s right, we will be seeing them for months and months to come.

    You have a better chance of surviving a plane crash than surviviing a run for office here.

    No politics for me!

  3. RLatin says:

    Very interesting work, Bruce. Enjoyed the bridge several days ago, and I thank you for introducing me to Davao. RL

    • Bruce says:

      Thank you for enjoying my site. It amazes me how some people have so little knowledge or thoughts of life in another country, especially a 3rd world country.

      I also have enjoyed playing Bridge online and have played with many nice people. I wish the 3 guys I play with locally once a week were so nice. They think they are experts and love to tell you your mistakes, even if you win your contract or set the others, they tell you how many more you could have made.

  4. macky says:

    allow me to make a minor correction:
    the president & VP are only allowed 1 term (which is 6 years).
    Arroyo was able to serve 9 years because she was not originally elected when she started (taking over by popular uprising).

    for decades, the term limits used to be like the US (2 terms, 4 years each), but in 1987 changes were made as a reaction to the just toppled Marcos being able to rule 21 years. there actually was a national vote for this amendment (voters chose between a “yes” or “no” vote at the ballot).

  5. Tom Martin says:

    Gloria did not take over due to an uprising. She was the ELECTED Vice President and became President when Joseph Estrada was about to be impreached. The impeachment never went through because Estrada stepped down before it could pass through Congress.

    • Bruce says:

      Thank you for the clarification.

    • macky says:

      Thanks for clarifying what I wrote. I guess I did not it explain so well.

      Yes, I was aware she was VP (I voted in that election), but I meant to say that she took over the Presidency after the Estrada was toppled in a popular uprising now known as EDSA dos (two). I mistakenly assumed that the readers knew she was VP then.

      Either way, she was not elected to the Presidency the first time, allowing her to run in the next elections (a highly contested argument at that time).

  6. alantooth says:

    whatever. i still hate GMA for taking over, hahahaha
    playing bridge is much better than philippine politics, kiddin’

  7. Thank you for well researched information in your write-up Election Time in the Philippines | American in Davao!

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