by Kattryn Erryc Sayo
It is a dream that gave, gives and will give birth to a thousand more dreams.
Christian Natividad from Barangay Bungahan, the incumbent mayor of the city of Malolos in Bulacan, is one of the living proofs of the aforementioned statement.
The city mayor finished his elementary in Holy Spirit Academy, and was a high school graduate of Immaculate Conception School for Boys (ICSB), both in Malolos. In the grounds of the Univesity of Sto. Tomas, he took the course Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, and decided to take up law, finishing his first two years in the same university, where he was considered as his class’ top student/Dean’s Lister. He completed his degree in Law in the Far Eastern University. At present, he is enrolled for his Masteral degree in Criminology in the Philippine College of Criminology.
“”Yong law course ko sa UST nag-DDL ako no’n (Dean’s Lister). Pero no’ng graduating na (sa FEU), hindi na’ko nag-ta-top. Divided na ang time ko eh, tumatakbo na kong bokal no’n sa Malolos, tapos nagtuturo pa ‘ko sa mga college students. No’ng time na ‘yon wala na sakin ‘yong DL na ‘yon, ang aim ko no’n makapasa sa bar exams,” he said.
Natividad reveals he is a socially active citizen of Malolos, even during his youth years. He disclosed that public service is his preference and enthusiasm. As a matter of fact, he has been offering his public service, by political means, for a total of 13 years already. It was first felt when he became the Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) Chairman of their barangay in the year 1996. More opportunities to serve the Malolenos cropped up when he was elected as a municipal councilor in 1998, and as a city councilor when Malolos became a city in 2001. His leadership skills expanded as he ran and won as the provincial board member in 2007. In 2010 up to present, he is the mayor of Malolos City.
As a public servant, Natividad’s chief goal is to offer and sustain one of the basic needs of the people, which is education. In his term as the city mayor, he had already established a number of elementary and high schools (not less than 10) in different barangays, which he considers as the best and most successful project he pioneered as a mayor. He filed his Certificate of Candidacy for the same post for the 2013 elections, with the desire of the expansion and continuation of the schooling projects he had started.
Aside from the development of the education system in the city, Natividad also believes that another best deed he had done as a public servant is the accessible connection between the government and the citizens. According to him, a public servant must also go out and become socially attached to the people he is serving, not only in his office bossing around, giving orders to people.
As evidence of his excellent leadership, Natividad had already received various awards. He named some as Most Outstanding Councilor in Malolos, Most Outstanding Councilor in the First District, and Most Outstanding Councilor in Bulacan, against the more than 200 other councilors in the province.
As a public figure, Natividad isn’t new to hearing and receiving comments and criticisms. And though thrown with several commentaries and disapproval in line with the way he serves the people, he share he is open to such and welcomes them wholly.
“Open minded ako, I welcome criticism. Actually sa facebook, member ako ng isang group page do’n na ang ginagawa lang ay magkaroon ng sinister campaign against me, ‘yong tirahin ako nang tirahin kasi gusto kong malaman kung ano ‘yong mga criticism sa’kin. Kasi I welcome it eh. Bakit? I don’t take it as against me, I take it as constructive. Kasi tinutulungan pa nila akong itama ‘yong trabaho ko. Para rin naman ‘yon sa improvement ko, kailangan ko ng feed backing system sa taong pinagtutungkulan ko,” he said.
However, Natividad cannot erase the fact that he also receives criticisms that are purely hurtful and damaging.
“’Yong iba paninira lng, malicious imputations lang, ibig sabihin talagang designed lang para sirain ako. Wala na akong magagawa do’n eh, nginingitian ko nalang,” the mayor added.
As a Mayor-Father-Man
Despite the power and position he is currently holding of, the mayor imparts that he is still the same Christian Natividad that the people knew even before he became the city mayor. Just like the ordinary citizens, he led a simple and common life, with normal hobbies and interests.
“Simple lang ako. Hindi ako ‘yong tipo na nakalagay sa ulo ko ‘yong kapangyarihan ko. Nadagdagan lang ako ng pangalang ‘mayor’ pero wala rin eh, gano’n parin ako. Katulad ng mga ordinaryong mamamayan, may mga hobbies din ako. Naglalaro ng computer, nag-gigitara, nakikinig ng music. Simple lang talaga,” he shared.
In his role as a father, Natividad does not forget his responsibilities to his children. Even though he is too much occupied in dwelling on his service to the Malolenos, he makes sure he still has time for his two kids.
“Eto ang buhay ko araw-araw: Ako kasi paggising ko sa umaga labas na ‘ko 5-6am. 8am balik ako sa bahay harapin ko ang napakaraming tao. Wala akong asawa, pero may dalawang anak, parehong panganay. ‘Di bale nang mapintasan ako ng ibang tao ‘wag lang ‘yong mapintasan ako ng anak ko na hindi ko sila ipakilala o itinatago ko, inaalagaaan ko talaga sila. Tapos sa tanghali maghapon ‘yon, puro trabaho ako. Ang bahay namin bukas eh walang bakod, welcome ang mga tao,” mayor shared, laying out his everyday life.
Pursuant of Dreams and Aspirations
Having been left alone with just himself since his father died when he was only 17 or 18 years old with no inheritance at all, with a mother who cannot work, Natividad considers himself as a survivor. For other people, it could have been so difficult to keep up with life, but for Natividad who has undying passion of fulfilling his dreams, decided to pursue his career, that is now giving way to building more dreams.
“Kung huminto ako sa pangarap ko, ‘di nagtyaga makatapos ng college, ‘di nagtyagang magtapos ng law, tambay lang din ako ngayon. Baka problema ako ng nanay at tatay ko, problema ako ng barangay namin,” Natividad said.
That was the main reason why he is very much willing and forceful when it comes to the establishments of more schools; he wants the people especially the youth to continue on dreaming despite the difficulties that life has to offer.
As an enthusiastic dreamer and achiever himself, Mayor Christian Natividad left an inspirational message to students, “Payo ko sa mga students, pursue your dreams. Umakto ka at mag-aral, kasi very unfair ang competition sa labas. Education ang sarili mong tamang arsenal para maging competitive ka sa labas after schooling. At disiplina sa sarili, number 1 ‘yon,” he ended.