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Will Erap's comeback spark Manila rebirth?

DAY ONE. New Manila mayor Joseph Estrada buckles down to work by attending the city hall's flag-raising ceremony and leading a clean-up drive. Photo by Rappler/Leanne Jazul

DAY ONE. New Manila mayor Joseph Estrada buckles down to work by attending the city hall's flag-raising ceremony and leading a clean-up drive.

Photo by Rappler/Leanne Jazul

MANILA, Philippines – Former President Joseph Estrada moves to a new seat of power: the country’s capital, Manila.

The man convicted of plunder now promises to fight corruption.

Ayee Macaraig reports.

1998

JOSEPH ESTRADA

FORMER PHILIPPINE PRESIDENT

Walang kaibigan, walang kumpare, walang kamag-anak 

He made history as one of the most popular presidents to enter Malacañang, and the first to be detained and convicted.

Now, former President Joseph Estrada defies political death to become mayor of the country’s capital.

The popular movie star-turned-politician acknowledges his new date with history as he takes his oath as Manila’s chief executive.

JOSEPH ESTRADA

FORMER PHILIPPINE PRESIDENT

For the first time, Manila will have an ex-convict as your city mayor. I feel that I am in good company with Nelson Mandela of South Africa, Anwar Ibrahim of Malaysia, Aung San Suu Kyi of Myanmar and our own Sen Ninoy Aquino who was convicted by a military court. We were all convicted. That is why we are now all men of conviction.

After winning a bruising race against ally-turned-rival Alfredo Lim, Estrada says he will bring back the glory of a decaying Manila.

In his first 100 days, Estrada sets his sights on cleaning up the police force.

The man convicted for allegedly receiving illegal gambling payoffs is now the one running after cops on the take.

JOSEPH ESTRADA

FORMER PHILIPPINE PRESIDENT

Tapos na ang maliligayang araw ninyo sa Maynila! Tapos na, tapos na, tapos na. I promise you, the fight against corruption will be the centerpiece of our administration!

Estrada focuses on peace and order, urging businessmen to install CCTV to help fight crime.

In a city notorious for garbage and floods, he marks his first day on the job with a clean-up drive.

Estrada attracts supporters like tour guide Carlos Celdran, his new tourism consultant.

But he also has his share of critics.

Protesters greet him on his first day at work, criticizing him for saying vendors cause traffic and flooding.

He proposes a night market to keep them out of the streets.

Estrada knows his new job puts his popularity and political will to the test.

JOSEPH ESTRADA

FORMER PHILIPPINE PRESIDENT

Nag-ikot ako pagkatapos ng eleksyon, parang ayoko nang umupo. Ang daming problema tapos nakita ko pa ang lahat ‘yun sa esteros. Mahirap toh. Erap para sa mahirap. Pag tinanggal ko lahat iyon, inaapi ni Erap ang mahihirap.

With only 3 years to transform a city called the gates of hell, Estrada calls on both supporters and critics to give him and Manila yet another chance.

From president to mayor.

Estrada vows to fight an evil he himself was accused of: corruption.

In his political rebirth, he also promises to give new life to the country’s capital.

But great expectations and limited time are the challenges Asiong Salonga faces in his new role.

Ayee Macaraig, Rappler. – Rappler.com