The circus where all have the same names

Elder statesman and former President Fidel Ramos has raised the issue of having a lot of people with the same surnames running for various positions in next year’s national election. He suggests passing a law to prevent this from happening. However, even in Australia there are similar practices also present in the political scene. The difference is in Australia there is an educated electorate who will only vote for someone who does his job. Having a namesake is no guarantee of winning office. Unfortunately, Philippine voters still have yet to reach this level of political maturity. Hopefully, that will change as the many overseas Filipinos returning to the country bring this mindset back home. In the interim, please enjoy yourselves in the circus.

From Business Mirror

Rise of ‘dynastic’ families assailed

Wednesday, 03 October 2012 19:13 Recto Mercene / Reporter

FORMER President Fidel V. Ramos on Wednesday bewailed the rise of “dynastic” families, or what he calls “dynastism,” that has overwhelmed the country’s body politic and called on Congress to enact a law that would prevent it from being made as a regular practice during every election.

If Congress will not enact such law, Ramos suggested that a simple statement barring dynastism be inserted in the 1987 Constitution.

“If Congress refuses to put it into law, then it should be inserted in the language of the Constitution and would state thus: ‘“Any relative within the fourth degree of affinity or consanguinity is prohibited from running in the same office within an adjacent political jurisdiction, province, city or district until the lapse of  three or six years.”’

Ramos said if the incumbent wants to change his political affiliation anytime, that politician should be disqualified from running for office for the next three years.

He made the comment after noting that those who have filed their certificates of candidacy for the 2013 midterm elections were governed by so much “interconnections.” He said the ruling party and the opposition have many common candidates.

“And within all of senatorial, district, provincial, city, municipal contests, you can see the pernicious hands of dynastism at play, which is prohibited in the Philippine Constitution of 1987, very specifically, although it says “as defined by law.’”

Ramos said this state of affairs is to our own disadvantage, adding that no law defining dynastism has even been enacted by Congress because the lawmakers of today are of a different breed; “They have not the public good in mind.”

He added, however, that private interests do not represent the national interest.

“And so, are the common Filipinos going to stand for this forever? Are we going to be dominated by a handful of powerful, wealthy and influential families?”

He said the failure to check the rise of dynastic families in the country leads to “turncoatism,” which he defines as running under the banner of two or more parties.

He said our presidential system—as the Filipinos have experienced—was designed for a two-party system, the opposition and the incumbent party.

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