Sunday, October 24, 2021

Bong Go: Senator Or Secretary?

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When talking about the role of a Senator, the first thing that comes to mind is ‘lawmaker.’ They create bills, resolutions, and propose amendments that pass through a contiguous process such as nominations through voting, before getting the approval of the Executives. Thus, this proves that the role and responsibility they need to accomplish is indeed crucial. However, is escorting the President with almost all of his endeavors part of the Senator’s job or has the role changed? 

Bong Go’s name was always associated with President Rodrigo Duterte himself, even before his term as a Senator. People are mocking him, calling names such as “first lady” and photobomber of the Chief Executive. There are a lot of instances where Duterte is present in a meeting, of which Go is as well. Images from his social media accounts taken together with Duterte are posted and are not new in the eyes of the Filipino people. Which makes us question: Is this even normal? Is it normal for a Senator to invest more time accompanying the President rather than working earnestly in passing bills which is in fact, his responsibility as a Senator of the country in the first place? 

Joining meetings with officials of the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Diseases (IATF-EID) even if he is not among its members, and letting Roque speak on his behalf, are only just a few instances where Go is talked about and seen on national television. His acts make people question the airtime that he has been receiving as a ploy for his 2022 National Elections bid. 

Go is the only Senator who has been consistently wasting his time prioritizing being seen with the President wherever he goes while his co-lawmakers busy themselves by doing their rightful duties and responsibilities as legislators. Often seen as the only lawmaker present in the President’s endeavors regardless if it’s not part of his job description makes everyone question his reasons for doing this. Perhaps it could be because he is good friends with the President or that he aims to contribute something as he assists him. However, if Senators such as Bong Go are given this privilege, then why are other Senators not given the same opportunity? In addition, if he claims that his sole intention for doing these things is because of his promise to never leave Duterte’s side as he ran for Senator in the 2019 elections, then he should have applied as the speaker of the President rather than a Senator.  

There’s nothing wrong about doing things that are not inclined with one’s job when they are in the world of politics. Given that politicians are expected to be leaders of public service, they should not be limited from the position that they are holding for the common good. But for Bong Go’s case, he is expected to perform his senatorial duties accordingly, considering his rules and responsibilities as Senator to be his top-most priority. Instead, he has completely neglected his duties. 

Also taking into consideration that the legislative and executive are two completely different branches in the government, which also requires independence, to be able to find success and balance in doing their job as public servants. 

In a statement he made last June 20, 2020 regarding the possibility that VP Leni might not work well with the IATF, he said, “Mas makakatulong si VP Leni sa kanyang kasalukuyang ginagawa rather than mamuno sa IATF kasi alam naman nating it is composed of the President’s men and women sa kanyang executive department po.” Notice the ironic difference with what he had to say back then that Leni should not lead the IATF, to what he is doing today, joining meetings with the IATF even if he is not part of the Executive branch.

Remember, a Senator must be seen in the House of Representatives, and not in the house of the President. 

 

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not reflect the view of POLITICO.PH

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Vea Marie Ferlen G. De Villa is an intern at PageOne under Politico.ph and a student Journalist from the University of the East Manila. She once led its Journalism Society and has continuously become a representative of the organization during her senior year. She has been part of various Editorial boards and written articles on different school papers. She loves to drink coffee while writing news and stories. She is trying to live a purpose-driven life for God, the People, and the Truth.

Facebook: Vea Ferlen De Villa
Instagram: veaferlendv
Twitter: @veaferlendv

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