By LITO RULONA
MAYOR Oscar Moreno on Sunday decried what he called as the penchant of some politicians in spreading false information to discredit and slander their political opponents. He said it was disturbing to him that young people are being given the notion that election victories are dependent on how politicians make up stories and carry out smear campaigns.
Speaking during the “Unity Walk, Prayer Rally and Peace Covenant Signing,” Moreno said politicians seeking public office may compete to win the trust of voters but he cried foul over the dissemination of false information through traditional and social media outlets as part of a smear campaign against political opponents.
The Sunday activity here was organized by the police, Army and Commission on Elections.
“Elections [are held] not to divide the people but to unite the people kay lage, as part of our democratic space there will be a competition on ideas, and rivalries [over] positions. But this does not mean that the intention of the competition is to divide the people,” Moreno said.
He said politicians running for public office should teach children that competition and winning should not be done through political demolition jobs, and that political campaigns should be based on platforms of government. He said politicians should be discussing their programs of government.
“Plastar sa programa ang gikinahanglan, dili pagpangdaut sa tanan,” Moreno said.
He spoke of Cagayan de Oro’s and Misamis Oriental’s past leaders, and about how they carried out their political campaigns. “Sa panahon nila ni Nene Pimentel, Vice President Emmanuel Pelaez and Reuben Canoy, we listened to them… they articulated their programs, their dreams and their aspirations…”
Moreno said the past leaders of the city and province did not prioritize the demolition of their political rivals. While the “negative type” of campaigning has been part of elections, he said politicians should not be focusing their energy and resources on it.