SPORTSMEN-turned-politicians tend to become more efficient public servants than their counterparts from show business, a political analyst said.
Ramon Casiple, executive director of think-tank Institute of Political and Electoral Reform, said the discipline instilled in athletes from the time they were young comes into play when they enter public service.
“Ang kaibahan talaga ng sports people yung disiplina," Casiple said in an interview with Spin.ph. “Mas may disiplina kasi sila sa katawan eh, di ba kasama sa demands ng trabaho nila yun.”
Their fitness physically is also a plus, Casiple added. “Nakaka-pag double up kasi sa trabaho yung mga sportsmen dahil kumbaga hindi madaling mapagod ang katawan nila kasi dala nila yung disiplina nila.”
As a result, sportsmen become more productive, whether in a local position or in the field of lawmaking.
“Kung Senado halimbawa, mas nagiging productive yung mga dating players na naging senador,” said Casiple, citing cage legends-turned-lawmakers Ambrosio Padilla, Freddie Webb, and Robert Jaworski, Sr.
Padilla, a member of the Philippine basketball team that placed fifth in the 1936 Berlin Olympics, was a former senator who was also vice-chairman of the commission that drafted the 1986 constitution.
Webb was former congressman representating the city of Paranaque who was voted to the Senate in 1992 while former national player and coach Jaworski won a Senate seat as an independent candidate in 1998.
Comparing sportsmen turned politicians with celebrities from showbiz, Casiple said: "Yung sports kasi nag-re-require kasi talaga ng discipline. Yung showbiz people kasi salita (ang puhunan nila).
“Pero hindi ko sinasabing inferior yung mga artista na naging pulitiko ha. Kasi madami din namang matitinong artista na nagsilbi sa bayan,” Casiple was quick to add.
However, Casiple said showbiz personalities have more success than sports people in the electoral process because of their wider exposure and mass appeal.
Voters also tend to assume a closer relationship with actors and television personalities who they see in various forms of media all the time, he added. At the same time, showbiz celebrities also have the benefit of public-relations machines to boost their popularity.
“Mas sikat pa rin siyempre yung mga artista. Kasi personality-wise, may PR agad sila dahil kaya nilang magsalita ng diretso unlike yung mga sports people,” said Casiple.
Webb agreed, saying showbiz personalities have a more direct relationship with the public since they are used to communicating with people, whether in movies, TV programs, or media interviews.
“Sa sports naman kasi pambihira kang nakikita (ng tao) na nagsasalita, except kung ma-interview ka," said Webb, himself a former actor. "Hindi pareho sa pelikula, makikita ka. Magsasalita ka while you deliver your lines.”