[Photo shows the teenage President-elect Rody Duterte (sporting a polo-shirt unbuttoned at the top) in his mysterious askance gaze with his gracious mother, the Late Soledad “Nanay Soleng” Roa Duterte, who seemed to look as though making out a hesitant smile.]

In one of his talks delivered while the media people was still a welcome entity into his fold, President-elect Rody Duterte (“Pres. Rody”) admitted that he does not want to be adulated, kowtowed and fawned upon like a personality cult leader. Indeed, Pres. Rody would want to live through life, even now as the incoming President of the Philippines, as just a simple man. 

Pres. Rody was a run-of-the-mill playful and naughty elementary pupil and all through his high-school and college student days.

Born in the Year of the Rooster, on March 28, 1945 in Maasin, Leyte where his family briefly resided; the family’s relocation ensued thereafter to the town of Danao in Cebu. In 1951, Pres. Rody’s family eventually resettled in Davao.

For Pres. Rody’s elementary education, he spent a year at the Laboon Elementary School in Maasin, Leyte. The rest of his elementary days were spent in Davao City as a pupil at the Sta. Ana Elementary School where he graduated in 1956.

As he would casually narrate during his campaign spiels, Pres. Rody would oft-repeatedly refer to his low marks in GOOD MANNERS AND RIGHT CONDUCT (“GMRC”). GMRC is actually part of the values education program in Philippine elementary schools and teachers are required to rate and/or grade pupils on the basis of their observable behavior. Indeed, Pres. Rody was then considered as a “problem child”, nay an adventurous child who was always out of their house, and who would endure beatings from his disciplinarian mother, the late Soledad Roa,  a school teacher.

Standing up to his “problem child” image, Pres. Rody was kicked out of the Ateneo de Davao High School for misconduct. By way of punishment, Pres. Rody was “exiled” upon the direction of his father, the then governor of the undivided Davao province, Gov. Vicente Duterte, to a far-flung high school at the Holy Cross High School in Digos, about 60 kilometers south of Davao  City.

Pres. Rody despite the beatings which he received and endured from his school teacher Mom, whom he endearingly refer to as Nanay Soleng, considers himself however as a Mama’s boy.

With his Mama’s boy insight, the mother-and-son kinship got so much etched in Pres. Rody’s subconscious mind that Pres. Rody keeps a memento of his mother, Nanay Soleng, and brings it every day to bed to induce sleep. This memento is an old ramie blanket given to Pres. Rody by Nanay Soleng when he was still a toddler. And Pres. Rody would bring it everywhere he goes and would mend and patch it up whenever it breaks apart.

As Pres. Rody went through some kind of a formal flying course, the 14-year old Pres. Rody, in one of his playful antics,  flew a small plane above his neighborhood without his parents’ knowledge.

Also, as he harbored bitter feelings then for having been castigated by the school dean in high school in front of his classmates, Pres. Rody flew the small plane too over his old high-school and threw a rock at the school’s roof. Days after however, he apologized to the school administration. Even in college, as Pres. Rody made clear that he is against all kinds of oppression, it has been bruited about that he shot a co-student who was bullying other studes at the San Beda Law School.

As a person who was born in the Year of the Rooster, Pres. Rody is considered as VERY OBSERVANT, HARDWORKING, RESOURCEFUL, COURAGEOUS and TALENTED.

Roosters are also talkative, frank, honest and loyal individuals. Roosters do not get sick very often as they tend to fight illness well. Even when they are ill, they recover their good health quickly. Also, roosters are a polygamous lot.

Indeed, roosters, as part of the FOWL species, would often sit on a high perch to serve as a lookout for his group (hence the term “rooster”). And the assigned rooster will sound a distinctive alarm call, if predators are nearby.

Pres. Rody has now sounded an alarm against the growing menace of drugs, criminality and corruption. And it is now up to us, who want our children to experience a NEW PHILIPPINES, to stand up to the challenge to support our soon to be ruling rambunctious and romantic ROOSTER.

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