Thursday, March 08, 2007


Back in 2004, during the canvassing in congress, we witnessed the spectacle of cheating right under our noses. Some maybe cheering and others heaving a sigh of protest. Day after day, we heard two prominent personalities utter the word NOTED again and again. The two are the "Mr. Bypass", Raul Gonzalez and the other, holier than thou, "Mr. Noted", Kiko Pangilinan.

Looking back, I wonder what would have happened if both entertained the opposition's protestations? Amid the hoots and howls and Digs Dilangalen's outbursts, the two majority leaders banged their gavels and shouted the most abused word of the day, NOTED. Was there a sinister plan already in motion or were the duo acting with expediency to please an impatient nation?

A year after, the Garci tapes came out and the nation reeled into uproar. With each passing day, people from different walks of life were caught in a hail of intrigues and deceit. Witnesses started to come out to tie together the biggest electoral fraud the country had ever seen. Going back to my question, were Kiko and Raul part of that grand plan to defraud a nation?

Raul could have as he has remained untouchable despite the many blunders he had committed. Kiko on the other hand is an elected official. He now paints himself as an independent who stands by the rule of principles. His wife Sharon defended his stand and actions during the canvassing. She said that Kiko just wanted to speed up the process as the electorate was becoming impatient with the slow canvassing.

Haste really makes waste. If they had only given the opposition a chance to be heard, we could have known about the cheating way sooner. We could have discovered for ourselves if there was cheating in a scale the opposition and other witnesses say. We could have averted the so-called ballot switching in congress. We could have known if FPJ was cheated in the millions or if GMA won by a small margin. The legitimacy issue could have been solved right there and then. I voted for some other candidate and it did not dawn on me that the word "NOTED" would have such a big impact on our country.

As elections dawn on us again, let's take time and ponder what's in store for us. Will we see the word "NOTED" rear its ugly head again? I hope not. My head is still spinning from the blast we got from that godforsaken word. Let's be more keen this time unless we want to be taken for another ride. This time, I'll take "NOTE" of that. Let's do our part and be extra vigilant this time around.

"Do I hear anyone saying, NOTED?"