More NP-LP mudslinging seen as election day nears

More NP-LP mudslinging seen as election day nears
By Lynda Jumilla

MANILA, Philippines – Sen. Manny Villar is pretending to be poor whereas Sen. Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III is supposedly mentally unstable.

These are but some of the accusations leveled against the two presidential candidates who are leading in pre-election surveys.

But while the accusations supposedly shed light on the character and fitness of the candidates, the accusers prefer to stay in the dark and rely on what are called “media leaks.”

For instance, there are documents questioning Nacionalista standard-bearer Manny Villar’s claim his family was dirt-poor, and that his brother Danny died because they could not afford his medical treatment.

The documents came from the camp of the Liberal Party presidential bet Aquino, but the Liberal Party insists it was not the source of the propaganda against Villar .

“Firstly, we deny na kami ang source. We deny that we are the source,” says Liberal Party chairman former Sen. Franklin Drilon. “The issue is the authenticity of the documents, not the source.”

But as shown in a series of e-mails forwarded to ABS-CBN, a member of Aquino’s campaign team disseminated the documents to the media, including ABS-CBN.

Aquino, meanwhile, has been portrayed as mentally unstable in documents given to ABS-CBN from two sources in the Villar camp.

The Nacionalista Party vehemently denies being the source of the fake psychiatric report on Aquino.

But earlier this week, they tried to associate Aquino with TOPAK, the Filipino street-slang for “crazy.”

“Ang gumagawa nito ay ang TOPAK ni Noynoy. Ano yung TOPAK ni Noynoy? Ito po yung Trapo, Oportunista at Kamaganak Inc. na pumapaligid kay Noynoy Aquino,” says Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano, secretary-general of the Nacionalista Party.

As election day approaches, the mudslinging will intensify.

It would be up to the voter to distinguish legitimate issues from plain black propaganda. (report aired on ANC, April 10, 2010)

Karen Ang

A plebeian who is trying to make small changes in this world.