Mong Palatino

Blogging about the Philippines and the Asia-Pacific since 2004


@mongster is a Manila-based activist, former Philippine legislator, and blogger/analyst of Asia-Pacific affairs.

Written for The Diplomat

The election victory of Ferdinand Marcos Jr. in this month’s Philippine presidential election reflected the continuing dominance of political dynasties in the country’s political life.

The return of the Marcoses has reminded many about the dangers of a single family monopolizing political power. The social problems engendered by the dominance of political dynasties certainly did not begin with the rise of the Marcoses nor did they disappear after the family was deposed in 1986. Politics over the past three decades has continued to be infected with cronyism, patronage, violence, corruption, and elitism, which have led to mass cynicism and dissatisfaction. That the next president is another Marcos highlights the tragedy and paradox of modern Philippine politics. It is tragic because no substantial accountability has been pursued against those who benefited from placing the country under dictatorship; and unreal because we are so outraged by what’s happening in the country yet we feel the political system is designed in a way that would only allow dynasties to remain in power

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No Honeymoon for the Marcos Presidency?

Written for The Diplomat

The Commission on Elections (Comelec) has junked several cases seeking the disqualification of former Senator Ferdinand Marcos Jr., which could pave the way for his proclamation as the next president of the Philippines after garnering a sizeable lead in this week’s presidential election.

Marcos ran on a platform of building unity in the country. Can he convince those who suffered during the Martial Law years to unite with him even if he continues to deny that atrocities were committed in the past? Is unity possible between Marcoses and other political forces which wanted to reclaim the ill-gotten wealth of the family? What kind of unity will Marcos promote if the demands for truth, justice, and accountability are addressed to his own family?

It is too early for Marcos to celebrate because even if the voting has ended, the political opposition is not eager to surrender the fight for what they think is right and just for the nation’s future.

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