I'm watching the live news feed over GMA 7 now as I write. Senator Noynoy Aquino has finally announced his decision to run for President in 2010. Responding to the calls from various sectors for him to run for presidency, the son of the country's Democracy Icons Benigno Ninoy Aquino and Cory Aquino finally announced that he's accepting the challenge and the responsibilities surrounding it.
"Tinatanggap ko ang hamong mamuno sa labang ito. Bayang Pilipinas, tatakbo po ako bilang pangulo sa darating na halalan," said Sen. Aquino. The announcement was made after Noynoy took a spiritual retreat in the Carmelites Convent in Zamboanga. Today also happens to be the 40th day of the late Pres. Cory Aquino's death, so the entire Aquino family was wearing black during the higly-anticipated announcement.
Senator Mar Roxas earlier gave up his bid for the presidency to make way for Noynoy. Pampanga Governor Ed Panlilio and Isabela Governor Grace Padaca also did the same. More and more politicians are crowding behind Noynoy in full support including Sen. Kiko Pangilinan, Sen. Rodolfo Biazon, and former Senate President Franklin Drilon, among others.
I used to dislike Sen. Mar Roxas because of his early papogi TV ads that don't say anything about what he's done for the country nor do these TV ads educate and inform. To me, they're utterly a waste of money. But after his "sacrifice" or what others say "graceful exit," I now have a reason to believe that he's not a sucker for power. Noynoy too, who initially had no plans to run for a higher office, is one good example of a modest political figure - One who doesn't think too highly of himself, one who thinks first of the duties and responsibilities ahead and if he's ready and capable to handle them before he makes a decision to run. Oh I've seen many politicians run for office despite the questionable capacity and morality to lead and serve. Sadly, that's common in this country. Money and popularity talk big in Philippine politics. Competence and moral ascendancy hardly ever stand a chance if you lack political machinery.
No further announcements yet as to Noynoy's running mate. Till then, let's keep watching. And let's keep our fingers crossed that majority of the Filipinos will go out and register, keep themselves informed, vote and vote wisely, stand up against vote buying and other forms of cheating. The government does not have the sole responsibility of stabilizing this country. All Filipinos should take that responsibility and only then can we achieve change for the better. Let's start with selecting the right leaders in a clean and honest election.