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THIRD GENERAL ELECTION: Will Andi Garcia achieve her Sousenkyo quest?

Andi Garcia (Team MII)

1st GE rank: 11th (trainee rankings) | 2nd GE rank: 48th

From ranking 11th as a Kenkyuusei during MNL48’s First General Elections, to being the captain of the trainees, to being promoted as an official member, Andi Garcia fought through these battles with all that she has. With her versatility and musical prowess, she could easily be considered as one of the dark horses of the group.

However, during the 2nd General Election last year, she came in 48th and the last person to be called to complete the 48 member seats that was on the line that time during the fan-dubbed “Death Sousenkyo”. On one of her guestings in MNL48 Interactive Live, she stated that she had mixed feelings for nabbing the said ranking, saying that she barely made it to the main group, and she was also the one who closed the group for the members who didn’t even get a rank.

Dubbed as “The Prodigy,” Garcia gained her fans through her well-roundedness when it comes to performing. Coming from a family with a musical background, she had some early exposure to singing and playing musical instruments from a young age. She also gained some of her fans through her content in her social media accounts.

Ervin Punzalan, a wota who has Garcia as his kami-oshi, said in an interview with PAKSA MNL that her humor and her habit of posting memes attracted much of the fans, especially those who can relate. “Most of the people na nakikita kong inilalagay si Andi (Garcia) in their oshi list ay yung mga taong nagshashare ng same personality with her; she has that quirky and meme-able personality kasi eh,” he said.

Presence felt

Since the group’s debut, Garcia’s exposure has been very little. Although being regarded as one of the talented singers in the group, she has little time to perform on stage. Punzalan even recalled the time that he saw the group perform, he barely saw Garcia perform, but despite of that, he sees her perform to her fullest. “Bihira natin siya makita mag-perform, so every time she appears on stage, she makes sure that it sounds like she is there,” he said.

One notable part of being a member of the girl group is social media presence. The members of MNL48 each have their own accounts in every social networking sites like Facebook, Instagram and TikTok to promote themselves. Once shy, Garcia’s social media pages are now filled with her quirky and entertaining posts.

Romate Tres, another Andi kami-oshi, said that as time passed by, he saw some significant progress on how she has promoted herself in her social media pages. “Ang notable improvement niya sa akin ay social media presence, how she delivers herself. Sinabi niya dati na hindi siya sanay magpicture-picture, which is evident sa early posting ng page niya. Recently, mas madalas na siya mag-update ng kanyang content,” he said.

Hard work rewarded

Since the past 2 years, Garcia has not been part of any senbatsu lineup. Little did she know, her hard work and patience will finally pay off in 2020. When the senbatsu lineup for the 6th single's coupling song "10nen Zakura" was unveiled during the MNL48 1st Generation Festival last March 1, Garcia was left in joy as she was announced to be a part of it.

Garcia joining the senbatsu for MNL48’s rendition to AKB48’s renowned 11th major, and 13th overall, single has certainly made fans, and especially her, overjoyed. “Matagal ko nang hinihintay ‘to,” Garcia tearly said during the 1st Generation Festival. “Ito na talaga ‘yung totoo, senbatsu na ako,” she even added.

It seems that Garcia’s accomplishments did not stop this year. She even nabbed an acting role for the upcoming MNL48 Presents series "Pranks Not Dead”, securing the 2nd position after a two-week campaign.

A mission to the top

Although Garcia’s fanbase is relatively small, they are still determined to secure a spot for her. Andinatics, Garcia’s most known fanclub, has launched their support pack, aiming to raise funds for some additional votes this upcoming General Election. “You can only campaign someone so much, and I think Andi can encourage fans to vote for her,“ Tres said.

Garcia, starting from the bottom almost literally, is rapidly gaining the attention of other fans. A chance to retain a spot in the group is very well clear for her. But as Garcia has said in one of her Kumu lives, she would be happy to be part of the group, whatever rank it may be.

Asked about a personal message for the Garcia’s fans, Tres urged fans to show support to their oshi when they can. “May kanya-kanyang rason ang mga wota to support their oshi, so if Andi gives you a reason to support her, go lang. Let her know whenever you can. I believe Andi does her best to reciprocate what she’s getting from fans and she’s doing her best to fulfill that role,” he said. He also reminded them to always set your boundaries as a wota and exercise respect. “Just remember your limitations as a fan and set your expectations properly,” he said.

Punzalan, sharing his sentiments, had a message for his esteemed Kami-oshi. “Andi, nandito lang kaming mga fans mo through thick and thin. Always remember, your happiness is our happiness.” he said. “At sa mga Andinatic dyan. Laban lang. Kaya natin ‘to,” he added.

The competition will only be tougher this time around as the Sousenkyo draws near. But armed with undeniable ability and talent, Andi Garcia is sure to put up an even tougher fight this coming General Election.

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