Dictator’s son Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. is poised to win the presidential race by a wide gap, raking in more than 31 million votes as of Wednesday, May 11, while opposition leader and Vice President Leni Robredo lags behind with less than half of the front-runner’s votes.
Robredo supporters who actively participated in the campaign – dubbed “historic” for its huge rally turnouts and the large-scale volunteerism that defied traditional political machinery – did not hide their dismay over the disheartening turn of election results. On the night of May 9, election day, Marcos kicked off with a strong lead over Robredo which he maintained all throughout.
Neither did Robredo’s running mate, Senator Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan, have a better chance against the President’s daughter and Marcos’ vice presidential bet, Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte.
Using the hashtag #ElectionAftermath, several voters took to social media to share what they could only see as a dreaded future looming as another Marcos takes over Malacañang.
“Papunta pa lang tayo sa exciting part. (The exciting part is yet to come.) Buckle your seatbelt. The dark side of history is yet to come,” one Twitter user said.
User @edlingui calls the next six years “the worst ride of our lives as Filipinos.”
Some also underscored the massive disinformation and historical revisionism that led to the comeback of the Marcoses, whose patriarch was ousted by the 1986 EDSA People Power Revolution.
Now that the Marcoses are back in power, netizens fear that the worst is yet to come in the battle for facts.
Marcos’ presidential bid had its share of controversies. Petitions, which were eventually dismissed by the Commission on Elections (Comelec), sought to disqualify him on the grounds of his tax evasion case in the 1990s. But since he is now set to lead the country, a Twitter user asked, “can we not pay our taxes until he pay (sic) his?”
While many are starting to picture what the next six years is going to look like, others remain hopeful that history repeats itself – only in the spirit of People Power.
On May 10, following election day, several groups already trooped to Comelec to protest the “unjust” election process.
Marcos supporters see hope
But for Marcos Jr.’s supporters, his long-awaited victory tells another story.
As partial, unoficial tallies showed the BBM-Sara tandem enjoying a significant lead over their rivals, supporters flocked to the Uniteam headquarters to celebrate.
Many of them believe the son will follow in the footsteps of his father, whose legacy of corruption and violence-marred authoritarian rule has been rebranded by disinformation propaganda as the country’s “golden age.”
“Alam kong meron kaming future. Alam kong ipapagpatuloy nya ‘yung ‘di pa nagagawa ng tatay niya sa mga Pilipino.”— Rappler (@rapplerdotcom) May 10, 2022
Jannette Salsona, 43, biked here from Manila (Sta Ana). | via @ramboreports #PHVote #WeDecide pic.twitter.com/WPqYGyReQJ
Lita (not her real name), 44, came from France 3 weeks ago. She’s elated to come home to a Marcos victory.— Rappler (@rapplerdotcom) May 10, 2022
“Kung ano ang ginawa ng ama, ipagpapatuloy ng anak.” | via @ramboreports pic.twitter.com/QpuubBGFWX
Others found respite in the tandem’s call for “unity,” and saw their avoidance of media and debates as a sign of humility, a symbol of a future free from political friction and toxicity.
“Gusto ko BBM kasi humble at tahimik lang. ‘Di siya nakikipagbangayan. ‘Di siya sumasama sa mga gulo, sa mga negatibo ‘di niya pinapatulan.”— Rappler (@rapplerdotcom) May 10, 2022
Andrei Adena, 22, from Malabon. | via @ramboreports pic.twitter.com/pUjjHSIcpw
“Ang kabaluktutan ng EDSA ay dapat ituwid natin. Dapat magkaisa na. Kung ano ang kulay ka man, magsamasama tayo, para hindi tayo laitin ng ibang bansa.”— Rappler (@rapplerdotcom) May 10, 2022
Manny Macario, 51, from Imus, Cavite. He founded ng Marcos Family Loyalist United Group. pic.twitter.com/gjKZICMwCe
To their supporters, Marcos and Duterte nabbing the two highest posts in government ushers in the aptly phrased “Bagong Pilipinas” (new society), a trademark campaign of the Uniteam.
In the Senate race, Duterte allies and members of powerful political clans fill the Magic 12. Two candidates, Alan Peter Cayetano and Mark Villar, are immediate relatives of incumbent senators, while reelectionist brothers JV Ejercito and Jinggoy Estrada are poised to win back their seats. Risa Hontiveros is the lone opposition bet to make the cut.
How do you see the future of the Philippines under the new administration? – Rappler.com