The recent interview of Winnie Monsod, a known economist, academician and host of TV program “BAWAL ANG PASAWAY” stirred the emotions of the people that have long been kept due to lack to guts for fear of being labeled as “dissenter.”
Winnie Monsod rocked the boat by asking straightforward and fearless questions to Governor Jose Chaves Alvarez which she tagged as an “autocratic” kind of leader.
According to the website psychology.about.com, autocratic type of leadership is also known as authoritarian leadership, is a leadership style characterized by individual control over all decisions and little input from group members. Autocratic leaders typically make choices based on their own ideas and judgments and rarely accept advice from followers. Autocratic leadership involves absolute, authoritarian control over a group.
Many of you reading this writing may agree or disagree whether Governor Jose Chaves Alvarez indeed is autocratic in his running Palawan.
In summary, Winnie Monsod said that one thing she doesn’t want with the governor is when he removed the scholarship of many poor student of Western Philippines University who signed the petition opposing the then proposed coal-fired power plant in the town of Aborlan, Palawan.
According to Monsod, Gov. Alvarez violated the freedom of expression of the students which has a chilling effect to others that when you opposed the will of the governor you will face hard times. Do you agree?
Again, according to the website psychology.about.com autocratic leadership can be beneficial in some instances, such as when decisions need to be made quickly without consulting with a large group of people. Some projects require strong leadership in order to get things accomplished quickly and efficiently.
Alvarez is known for his “get it done” attitude. He has so much in mind that would want it finished ahead of schedule which most of the time he is “misunderstood.”
The Philippines is a democratic country where the right to say or express one’s thoughts and opinions as long as it is within the bounds of law protected by the Constitution. An authoritarian government does not provide for such free expression but otherwise limits if not totally stops it.
A key feature of a democracy is the participatory process where important decisions on matters that affects the lives of the people requires that their voices be heard, be it for or against a government action.
The interview of Monsod was an eye opener both of Governor Alvarez and the people. It is not yet late to assess and make things right.
Having a ‘firm’ leader is ideal especially if the situation requires decisive action but “listening” to the people is also is the key to being effective leader.