I don’t have the loud and persuasive voice of Mike Enriquez or Ted Failon but for eleven months, I was co-host in a weekly radio program in DZAR. The other hosts of ‘Sabado Live’ were Congressman Jun Lozada of Negros and Ellene Sana of the Center for Migrant Advocates.
Our troika worked in this way: Sir Jun would give the opinion of a politician disgusted and disappointed over his former colleagues in the government. Ate Ellene would discuss the issue from the point of view of civil society and I would try to articulate the perspectives of young Filipinos.
For almost two hours every Saturday morning, our program tackled a variety of important local and even international issues. The memorable ones were the voters’ registration, absentee voting, election canvass, Angelo dela Cruz, fiscal crisis, and the landslide disaster.
Because my co-hosts were veteran and respected luminaries in their field, I had a free crash course on the migrant situation, international diplomacy and realpolitics in the Philippine Congress. I also enjoyed studying the basics of radio broadcasting and media work.
But the real fun would always begin after the show. Out troika, together with our producer Liza, would have a coffee break in the station or in a restaurant where we could have a quiet time to exchange political gossips and report how our lives went by for the week. We would share our funny and sometimes boring activities then we would plan the week ahead.
I had a good time listening to Jun’s tirades against the imbecile trapos in Congress and Malacañang. It was amazing to hear Ellene’s stories of her foreign travels and Liza’s interesting queries on our lives. I really miss their company.
To become a radio host for a brief time like my TV character idol, Frasier, is enough consolation for my stint in DZAR. But the best reward for the trust Jun, Ellene and Liza placed on me was the memorable experience of reaching out to a broader public. What joy it was to answer the questions of listeners or to hear their feedback on our program. The interaction with our listeners was satisfying and it pleased me to know that many people were listening to my views.
I may not have the admirable voice which radio hosts possess and our troika may not have had the most popular radio program in town, but we excelled in sincerely reaching out to the people and practiced the best public service we can ever give.