MAPping the Future

Patronage politics is what’s keeping us poor

/ 04:19 AM December 29, 2014

Patronage politics is what keeps our people poor and yet, Filipinos don’t realize it because of the crumbs and promises they receive from corrupt politicians.

It is to the advantage of corrupt politicians to keep the status quo. All they need to do to stay in power is religiously stay with the winning formula…make promises, provide sugarcoated hope for a better life, ferment a rich-poor divide and provide a semblance of benevolence to the desperate in our society.


What we need to emancipate us all from poverty is PRINCIPLED POLITICS.

None of our political parties stands for any principles, except to conveniently adopt whatever principle it takes to get elected to stay in power. The absence of principles explains why it is so common in Philippine politics to have political butterflies that move from party to party, as the wind blows. Our politicians are not weighed down by principles or any political party.


If we want a better Philippines, a Philippines with a strong middle class to fuel our economy with their disposable income, we should all be more vocal and demanding of our politicians.

We should challenge the political parties to find the next candidate, from their ranks, to run for president… a candidate with strong and moral leadership. A candidate who is honest, principled and competent. A candidate who will lead the nation out of poverty.

Clear road map

The political party and the candidate for President should present a clear road map as to how they propose to accomplish an economic turnaround and address poverty. It must be a party platform that they will support during the six years of the next President.

And just like in any employment application, more so for the highest position of the land, they must present their candidates’ credentials and justification for the party’s choice of candidate for President. They must tell us what we can expect should their candidate for President win public favor.

It is wrong, arrogant and self-serving for anyone to present himself or herself for the presidency just because he or she believes he or she could win. There had been many non-political but popular persons who were winnable candidates for the presidency, but they all had the sincere interest of the nation and its people at heart, honest with themselves and sensible enough to know that should they win the presidency, they would not be able to live up to expectations. Ultimately, they would only do a disservice to the country as President. They are good at what they do and that is why they remain popular and loved.

Winnability is not a good enough reason to be President. It will not be good for the country if we put the wrong person in office. It is good only for the corrupt politician and his political party who will feast on the spoils of the presidency.


Setting aside the Senate blue ribbon committee investigations on the allegations of corruption hurled against VP Binay, take a moment and just look at the “personalities” behind Binay and you know what kind of government we can expect.

Because of the Senate blue ribbon investigations, Binay’s camp is in panic to lose their meal ticket. They have resorted to vicious and incomprehensible efforts to dodge the questions of corruption hurled at VP Binay and Family when it could be so easy to refute the accusations with documentary and un-contestable facts. Every effort is employed to frustrate and prolong the investigation into Binay’s corruption…WHY?

They expect that the public and media will get tired and frustrated in time and the issue will pass quietly and be forgotten.

As far as they are concerned, all they need to do is just hang tight, sustain Binay’s lead in the surveys until the polls in May of 2016 and it’s a sure win for them.

That is the plan!

It is not about being honest or forthright to disprove the serious accusations of corruption since, for the sake of discussion, having a corrupt candidate is immaterial to their goals of the presidency, as long as they are winnable.

As far as they are concerned…WHO CARES IF THE NEXT PRESIDENT IS CORRUPT…as long as he is our President and we are to enjoy the spoils!

Ano’ng say mo?


(This article reflects the personal opinion of the author and does not reflect the official stand of the Management Association of the Philippines. The author is a member of the MAP National Issues Committee and the Chair and President of the BNL Management Corporation. He previously served as Administrator of the National Food Authority or NFA. Feedback at <[email protected] > and <[email protected]>. For previous articles, visit <map.org.ph>.)

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TAGS: Jejomar Binay, patronage politics, Philippines, politics, Poverty
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