Wednesday, November 9
Bawal na ang Epal
Bawal ang epal. For sure you have already heard of this bill being passed as a law and is being the talk of the TV news shows, tabloids and other media, also being a hot issue in the senate for a time already. But then, if you haven't yet, this bill is sponsored by the lady senator who not only provides me good political comedy but also knocks some sense into me and and all the public through her witty remarks and wisdom on public governance - Sen. Miriam Defensor Santiago.
Senate bill No. 1967 is An Act Prohibiting Public Officers from Claiming Credit Through Signage Announcing a Public Work Project - something I actually adored from the genius of the lady senator and one that I would love to be passed into law.
Whilst our country has been a country of laws, yet, we remain fortunate that we have hardworking lawmakers who continuously create more laws, be it intellectual laws and stupid ones like the Anti-Planking Bill. This new bill is an inclusion on the long list of our bills but one that I would fully support.
For me, this bill will reflect how humble our politicians are. For one, they will no longer be able to flaunt their names on signages which bears the title of the project, and what politician initiated it. For me, these politicians are public servants and it is their duty to conceptualize projects for the public in order to better the lives of the people. Be the project a road construction, a trash can or something of little value, IT still came from the taxes of the people, which means they have no right to place their names on those projects as if they are gods who must be worshipped because they have thought of that project.
Second, I think it unfair that these politicians have the chance to campaign too early as compared to those who silently do their work, yet bear more productive and tangible projects. Although this bill seems to constitute the local level, yet, it is a good thing if we do not see their names splattered on signages of these projects.
Violation of this, results to an imprisonment of 6 months to a year. I'd say this bill is good, because as members of the smallest unit of politics here in the country, in our barangays alone, we already see these situation. Some of our politicians are pachyderm enough, in other words, makapal ang mukha, to place their names on projects when even themselves do not pay their own taxes. This happens, right?
Makapal ang mukha is actually an understatement when we tackle the issue of politics, let alone our politicians. I admire Sen.Miriam Santiago for this, I just hope she will not be the first violator of this bill she has sponsored. A learning lesson to all of us, wag umepal dahil bawal na ang epal.
And while we are in this issue, let us understand why people are being called epal. Epal, mapapel, pumapapel, nagpapalapad ng papel, nangingialam, nakikialam, nakikisali, join-er, feeling kasama. We can prevent being "epal" in our offices, groups, classrooms, organization. Let us learn to be humble enough to just work our way, even silently, but producing good results.
Not all of our politicians are epal, but MOST of them are. I hope this bill humbles them.