Our Presidents and their purposeBy Randell Tiongson on March 4th, 2010
In a few months we will finally say goodbye (hopefully) to the 2nd longest serving President of the Republic. Just how good or bad did GMA perform? Let’s try to look at this on a more objective manner…
Corruption has really gone berserk in this administration. While corruption has been ingrained in our society, GMA’s mark for her administration’s record in the area of corruption is, well let me borrow the youth’s language here — ‘Epic Fail’. Her ability to rally the country has always been smeared by allegations of incredible graft and corruption.
Improvements in the economy. I’m not a GMA fan but we need to give where credit is due.
When GMA took office in 2001, here’s the situation:
Inflation at 7.5 percent; the balance of payments (BOP) was at $2.02billion;the ratio of external debt to gross domestic product (GDP) or how much of the country’s total goods and services annually go into servicing the debt, 72 percent; unemployment at 20 percent.
As GMA ends her term, here are the marcroeconomic stats:
Inflation at about 3.0% percent; the Balance of Payment stands at $5 billion; external debt to GDP ratio is down to 34 percent; and unemployment level is about 7%.
There are many areas that she still failed in the economics arena such as substantial and sustainable GDP growth; too much dependence on OFW remittances; a fiscal policy that needs to usher real country-side growth, the trickling of economic growth to the masses, etc. But, GMA inherited the country in a really bad shape and the improvement in the economic forefront is definitely a blessing.
GMA would probably come down history as one of the most unpopular Presidents we ever had… but history should be fair to her and us Pinoys should really give credit where credit is due. I am not saying we should forget all the ‘corruption’ attributed to GMA’s administration but we should also remember the good she has done.
I know many people will really disagree with me but I believe that all leaders are anointed and God allowed them to lead to serve His purpose, regardless if they cheated or not or whether they deserve to be in power or not . The Bible is full of stories on how God uses leaders, the good and the bad ones, for His purpose. We just need to see the bigger picture of things, I suppose. Let’s look at Philippine Presidents in this case:
1) Marcos – the country was in chaos, the nation needed to be disciplined. We needed an iron-fist at that time, like a child needed a spanking. Marcos was the perfect guy to do that.
2) Cory – it was time to bring back civil authority to the country and putting an inexperienced widow to thwart a well-entrenched dictator was a strong lesson on humility; further, God honored our being peace-lovers by giving us an unprecedented bloodless revolution.
3) Ramos – the country was already ready to experience growth; we were like a young nation once more and we were ready to spread our wings and try flying again; God put a non-catholic leader in a predominantly catholic nation to tell us that He was God of all and that faith is what is needed, not religion.
4) Erap – with the economic growth came arrogance; the masses were being neglected – people were more concerned about travelling outside the country, condominium units and golf courses. Erap was a big insult to the moneyed elite and the intelligent middle-class; he won by one of history’s biggest margins.
5) GMA – The previous administration left the country in turmoil in a very short period of time; the country needed a hard-working leader who was able to do the tough things that needed to be done and things that men are not willing to do. With all her faults and criticisms, GMA was probably one of the country’s hardest working leader – her work ethics are unbelievable and her dedication to productivity is something to be admired.
What will the next President’s role be? Not sure, but I know God will use him as He uses all to serve His purpose and according to His will which is good, pleasing and perfect (Romans 12:2).