A President is Coming to Town
This particular month of June will not pass by without having to change virtually the whole country. A new president shall man the palace now. We have seen and heard the toils and promises of the candidates, and their dreadful mud-slinging that thoroughly changed the hue of the current Philippine political scene in the last few months. But now that the show downs are over, we are altogether drawn to the fact that a new president has been chosen by the people.
I shall skip over the current issues still banging to our ears via the media, but it does not mean that they do not, in any way, affect the present (political) conditions. Indeed, their repercussions are yet to be seen. The vice-president position may still be in the hot seat, but Malacañang is now won by Noynoy Aquino.
Of course, the coming administration is being looked up now as the present hope for the various problems of the society today. To a large extent, the outgoing leadership, with all of its controversies and issues of corruption and death-defying political events, is to be given due for all this rising clamors of change. But, with a situation and set-up like this, where the majority of the citizens seem to be not satisfied of anything that is brought and served to them, I am not fairly surprised that many hopes are raised again at the impending oath taking of our new president.
I, myself, have been a willing part of that multitude of hopefuls, some of which have been discussed in passing in earlier entries. Noynoy seems to be the frail one among the brick candidates, but with all the characters that emerged as the campaign progressed it would be easy to concede really that he should be the choice of most of the Filipinos. He did win right, under the supposedly straightest electoral event in the country’s history.
As with all the considerations that we had when we voted for our candidates of choice, I risk saying that we have of course considered some benefits that shall at least tie up to us, making good of us in the long run. I can only think only of one, for this is one thing that has been a part of me, and which I believe with conviction would matter the most in the coming years. I am talking of science of course. Not just pure science, but all the aspects of it – science and technology, science education, culture of science, among other.
I would concede first that most, if not all, of the situations and ‘problems’ (for lack of a better term) that shall be faced by the coming president are intertwined to many extent. Poverty-overpopulation-education, for instance. Health-overpopulation, on another. Many permutations can be done. This, of course, is my own thinking only. It just helps me to look into the nature of the task that the next administration shall tackle. And science is no small thing.
For one, if science (with all the ideas of progress and advancement connected to it) policies are to be implemented or absorbed to many different sectors of the society – schools, industries, etc. – money shall be badly needed. And with money comes all the other major problems that we have been most certainly tired of watching in TV or reading on the newspapers.
Prestigious groups, councils, or organizations are already in existence, not just to make strong collaborations among themselves and to academic circles as well, but this alone would be no good. Conscious attention of the government on the policies that shall be implemented should be there. In need not be said that cooperation, and I mean genuine cooperation, between the government and the science community should be strengthened.
I can only cite of course the state colleges and universities in the country, where despite the aching tuition fee hikes in that last few years, still failed to uphold, in fact upgrade, the ‘academic conditions’ of our SCUs. There are still the rusty laboratory facilities, lack of materials for ready use either in class or research, and the ever-looming possibility that tuition fees might be increased again. SUCs are under the umbrella of the state anyway; I don’t see why the coming government should not get rid of the half-hearted efforts on the part of the government and instead boost more the science community of the country.
On first look, this may seem just a bunch of generalizations. I have seen how university faculties strive to bring academic outputs – either graduates or researches – to qualities of international standards. But I am for more than just having avant-garde scientists. I desire to have science running through the very veins of the country, through every living conditions of the country.
Singapore is already a fast-approaching passé example. We need not be so insecure as to push the country in one single move to be just like that. The Philippines, with its geography alone, and with all the diverse cultures and traditions weaved throughout the archipelago, a far different approach should be made. Now how, it is of course up to the government to tackle that out. All I want for now is to stimulate things up. There may be many other political or economic visions that people see as the ‘key’ or ‘keys’ towards Philippine progress, but with the way I see the situations among the youth and among the students in schools in particular, a cultivation of the culture of science in the Philippines should be put into action now. There may be the gigantic corruption that must be tackled first (a thing that is supposed to be tackled constitutionally, says one lawyer), but I stand here as a lone signal or reminder, that there are many effective channels through which this science endeavor can be delivered.
I can only stand by and perhaps observe for the usual First 100 Days. Perhaps by that time, I will have another say, perhaps a check-back on what has happened to this little desire of mine, and how the administration has fared to its promised platforms and policies.
Sites you might want to read and peruse: thepoc.net, noypipol.wordpress.com