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A ballot and a message: Inspiring election stories to remind you the Filipino voter holds the power

By Ayie Licsi and Saab Lariosa Published May 10, 2022 5:38 pm

With the May 9 elections concluding with turmoil, cases of violence, and a whole lot of anxiety, it’s easy to forget how amazing it can be to play a role in the country’s future. 

How was your voting experience? Are your fingers still tingling from shading your chosen candidates? Here are a few inspiring Election Day stories that remind us that, against all odds, Filipinos will always be willing to do right by their country.

Baguio city heroes

Nicole Cawed and her brother Igor wore cultural Igorot attire while casting their ballots at the Baguio City Special Education Center (SPED). 

The wearing of cultural attires in voting is a tradition started by their beloved father, Bong. They continue this tradition to show that they are proud Igorots who are proud of their heritage and culture. 

Donned in the traditional handwoven loin cloth, the Cawed siblings want to inspire the next generation to appreciate the rich tradition of Cordillera.

In a similar wave, visually impaired individuals and senior citizens also had their chance to vote at the same Baguio SPED Center.

Overwhelming emotions

Robert Alejandro, an artist at Papelmelrotti, was diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer and did not expect that he’d live to vote.

“I nearly broke down and cried in the middle of Culiat High School. I thought maybe it’s because I wouldn’t be able to live to vote and I was so happy to tears that I was able to,” he told PhilSTAR L!fe.

The artist also got emotional after casting his ballot. “I remember looking at my ballot receipt and thinking to myself- how beautiful my receipt was. I went to a restroom and more tears came.”

During the campaign period, Alejandro made art in support of his presidential candidate, Leni Robredo.

Whatever it takes

In Baybay City, Eufenio Natividad made sure to cast his ballot, despite being injured. Natividad was injured during a landslide in Barangay Kantagnos and lived in an evacuation center.

He still managed to fulfill his civic duty by going to the polling precinct on a stretcher. With his wife by his side to shade his chosen candidates, Natividad was able to cast his vote.

Extending a helping hand

While most Filipinos get their finger tinted with indelible ink once, Hamid Mohammad from Batangas City got inked four times. It sounds ridiculous, but his motives for doing so were actually wholesome.

After casting his own vote, Mohammad helped out three fellow Badjao at the Malitam Elementary School precinct. He helped out those who cannot read or write to cast their ballots during the elections. 

A voice for every age

Presidential sorties welcome supporters of all ages and walks of life, but 77-year-old  Evelyn Nazareno was a glowing exception when she attended Leni Robredo’s May 7 Makati miting de avance brought in by a stretcher and an ambulance. 

Evelyn’s daughter, Pia, her mother made the special request to the hospital after the death of her husband. Norberto “Boy” Nazareno, had passed away a few days before, and his wife wanted to remember him by supporting their presidential candidate.

Similar to Norberto, Evelyn is diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer. On May 9, Evelyn and Pia welcomed election day by waking up early and casting their ballots.

PhilSTAR L!fe has reached out to Pia and her mother for an interview.