The Santo Tomas Chainsaw Massacre

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By Linda Grace Cariño

Baguio Stories

Friday, July 4, 2014

TRENDING on Facebook: A mock poster of a mock move called The Santo Tomas Chainsaw Massacre, “based on a true story.” Found on Grace Bandoy’s page, the poster satirically has Nick “The Eco-Warrior” Aliping in the lead role, “co-starring” Willie Go, Bernard Capuyan, and Romeo Aquino, dubbed “the three stooges.” There is much response to the post, some serious, some not so serious. Myself, I think we should get very serious.

One, it is not a joke. It IS a chainsaw massacre, more than 700 trees wantonly cut down in a forest reserve. Two, it is a true story, sadly, despite Aliping's pro forma protestations. Three, he seems to not even care at all that Baguio’s water source has been compromised as a direct result of the massacre. Not to mention the danger to the mountain itself.

While legal suits have been thrown at Aliping and the stooges, let us be reminded that there is yet another recourse we can take. It's called a recall, that step citizens can take one at least one year after they have put someone in office and decide that s/he shouldn’t be in office after all, i.e. for loss of confidence. Has Baguio lost confidence in our so called “representative?” I think so.


It is time to circulate a petition to recall the congressman who has betrayed us. We need 15% of our voting population, which was 153,423 in 2010. So we need some 25,000 signatures. According to a primer on the recall process posted online by Philippine e-Legal Forum, “the recall petition must contain the following:

a. The names and addresses of the petitioners written in legible form and their signatures.

b. The barangay, city or municipality, local legislative district and the province to which the petitioners belong.

c. The name of the official sought to be recalled.

d. A brief narration of the reasons and justifications therefore.”
In the words of another Baguio representative who proved true to his senatorial duty and his city: LET'S DO IT.

Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on July 05, 2014.


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