"He needs more seasoning," Sen. Pimentel said.
Admittedly, while Noynoy has surged passed all the other presidentiables in surveys after surveys, Sen. Pimentel is correct to a point.
Indeed, Noynoy could show some real mettle as a leader like in the formation of the senatorial lineup of the Liberal Party, particularly in the much publicized jump over by Ralph Recto and Vilma Santos. For that matter, Vilma Santos is a most welcome addition since she has proven to be an exemplary local official as mayor of Lipa City before and now governor of Batangas in her own right.
I wouldn't say as well for Ralph Recto who as an administration senator and NEDA director-general stood at the core of the Arroyo government. In other words, he is very much a part of the evils of the present dispensation and his "defection" is plain politics of convenience and crass opportunism at a time when Noynoy has now become the undisputed frontrunner for the presidency.
No wonder, former senator Serge Osmeña has bolted out of the LP senatorial lineup as a matter of principle, and further denounced the "LP Mafia."
Add to that the question of Noynoy's plan of government, although Philippine elections have never been about that but about popularity and the bandwagon phenomenon in any election.
Going back to Sen. Pimentel's view, it must be stressed, however, that no one is ever really prepared for the presidency no matter what experience, qualifications and achievements one might have. Even Manny Villar with his rags-to-riches "sipag at tiyaga." Indeed, GMA was very much seasoned and has been in power for the last 8 years, but look at where we are.
Now what we really need in a president after GMA is someone you and I can trust.
Yes, the heart and soul of public office is personal trust. That's why the fundamental principle of governance as enshrined in our Constitution is that public office is a public trust.
And trust begins with honesty, bears fruit in justice and fair play, and is sustained by fidelity to the public interest.
You steal an election by "Hello, Garci", you're certainly not trustworthy.
You get your commission and waste and pocket people's money like through the botched NBN deal, you're not only not trustworthy but also a brigand.
You play with the people's voting intelligence through government-funded infomercials ahead of actual candidacy or through "Patrabaho ni Gloria" patronage during the campaign, you're not only a brigand but a duplicitous cheat as well.
Noynoy, I hope, would eventually rise up to the challenge. There is much to be desired in him, but he remains our best bet for a president we can trust. At the very least, he can't blacken the memory of Ninoy and Cory.
In fine, being trustworthy, not seasoning, is the most essential thing in our choice for president.