Stop the crap, City Council!

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By Tibs Palasan, Jr

Spark of Law

Friday, February 7, 2014

THE problem with winning an election not on one’s merit is that the eventual winner owes political debts to the kingpin.

The circus going on in the city council is rooted in the fact that the majority of the members of the city council owe their political fortune with the Emano bandwagon, although the horse that pulled the wagon suffered a crushing defeat.

The 2014 for Cagayan de Oro City has been cut to the barest minimum, designed to paralyze the city mayor. The intelligence fund is not enough for intelligence gathering. The budget is reduced from 20 million pesos to 5 million pesos. We are a big city with almost one million residents aside from the transients that come daily. How can the mayor wage intelligence gathering with that amount?


The rising criminality must be acted with efficient intelligence. We cannot wait for more bombings then gather information after. Often, it would be death statistics that we will record.

The fund for Philhealth insurance premium can only cover 25,000 people. Considering the city’s estimated 800 thousand residents the poorest of the poor cannot be treated in hospitals due to lack of medical insurance.

Crimes and medical issues strike at the very chord of the city population. Failure in these two areas is a kiss of death for effective city governance.

Of course, the drastic reduction of the proposed budget by 300 million pesos is designed to paralyze the Moreno administration. It is the sinister scheme of the Emano puppets in the city council to put down the incumbent mayor. It is hope that without funds, the Cagayanons would blame the mayor for their woes.

With an incumbent mayor unable to deliver basic services due to lack of funds, Dongkoy Emano will campaign in 2016 in a pink armor.

The majority of the city council has been suddenly critical of the measures proposed by the mayor. Well, they should deserve a pat on their backs for doing their tasks. That is their job. It is the essence of democracy.

Not so fast fellows! You were meek as lambs when your political patron was still sitting as mayor. Clearly onerous contracts were awarded to the contractors of the three major markets in the city – Cogon, Carmen, and Bulua markets. You did not even question why there was only one contractor for all the infrastructure projects in the city, as if we don’t have other qualified contractors in the country.

It is presumed that the members in the city council are intelligent.

But intelligence at times is not used for reasons of political expediency. Face it, had these councilmen not able to ride the Emano bandwagon, I doubt if they could even win a barangay council seat, except perhaps of the popular Ramon Tabor, who sadly, allowed himself to be subordinated himself to the less educated.

It is political survival that makes these otherwise intelligent councilmen to kowtow the dictates of their political patron.

There is term for this: political prostitution. Prostitutes sell their souls every night for survival. These councilmen sell their intelligence ergo their souls, for political survival. They cannot afford to get the ire of the smoking macho else they will be deleted from the political ticket come 2016.

What would then be the difference between the prostitutes in the streets and these councilmen? Their three-piece suits don’t make them more honorable than those plying their trades at night in skimpy clothing.

Redemption was had by Mary Magdalene when she embraced Jesus Christ. These councilmen can have their redemption too if instead of embracing the smoking mortal, they will follow the will of their constituents and serve them well.

It’s not yet too late honorable councilmen. Be independent. Decide and vote based on your conscience and not of the sour and grieving loser. Come 2016, you will win on your own merit. By that time, people will call you honorable minus the sarcasm.

Follow the dictates of the people, and like Mary Magdalene, you will have your redemption. Act based on the dictates of the smoking macho, and you are in the road to perdition.

Judgment day will surely come.

Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on February 07, 2014.


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