[by RASHID RH. BAJO]
(November 9, 2021)––The story of a 38–year–old woman here who took a brave step in attempting to break the prevailing dominant stereotype––the fixed and oversimplified image of men as a strong political patron––sitting in Koronadal City mayor’s chair has stirred surprises and sparked discussions.
Maylene Bascon–De Guzman, born and raised in a farming village in the said city, filed her certificate of candidacy (COC) for city mayor, a political position dominated by men since 1944 and until in the last midterm polls in 2019, her official FB said.
(NOTE: Koronadal City history told me that a woman named “Bai Luma Panat” was “appointed” as the first female mayor of the Municipal District of Koronadal in 1941. Her appointment lasted only three years).
The woman is popularly known as “Inday Maylene,” the niece and first cousin of two veteran politicians who ruled the city for more than two decades.Report said she was elected as city councilor in 2019 local election by a vote of more than 38,000, an electoral winning that some political observers here described as “overwhelming” that clearly indicated her strong connection to the popular support.
Someone close to Inday Maylene said her daring move of filing COC for city mayor can be likened to the act of sending the message of hope to women, telling them “don’t be afraid to face the challenge if you have the sincerity, the determination, and the purity of intention to win.”
Reports said Inday Maylene’s decision to run clearly implied her determination to be recorded as the “first elected female city mayor” if she wins, and her way of expressing what women can do if given the chance to rule the city.
“If men can do it, women can do it too,” her supporter, who told not to be named, told The Diyaryo Milenyo Digital News.
Inday Maylene was born in a poor family. She got her degree in Catholic-run Notre Dame of Marbel University (NDMU) by working while studying. She became the family’s breadwinner. She is not working for herself but for her family.
She tried to work both in public and private sectors. In public service, she was hired by her uncle former Mayor Fernando Q. Miguel to be one of his “trusted lieutenants” in his office.
After that, she ventured into the private sector by working as teller of a prominent private bank in General Santos City.
After several years, she went abroad to work. She was hired by a Dubai–based corporate firm, where she worked as an administrative officer, leading and commanding more than 1,000 workers.
In 2019 midterm polls, she was elected as city councilor. Since then, Inday Maylene’s life rolled into public service.
The Diyaryo Milenyo Digital News is yet to get the reaction of Inday Maylene about the story. ##