Editorial: Ending the TCC row

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Wednesday, May 28, 2014

TALISAY City Mayor Johnny V. de los Reyes has found a way to undo the knot that he himself made at the Talisay City College (TCC). This after the TCC Board of Trustees, in a meeting that JVR finally attended, decided to have the Commission on Higher Education (Ched) run the school until a qualified college president is appointed.

But it’s wrong to say that the TCC Board of Trustees has removed Ritchel Bacaltos and Paulus Cañete, the two personalities who claimed to be the college’s president, from the post. The Board’s appointee is Bacaltos. It didn’t have a hand in the appointment of Cañete; JVR did.

Bacaltos didn’t pose objection to the decision, which will be implemented on Monday. After all, he had said earlier that his hold on the position is dependent on the temperament of the Board.


Cañete for his part couldn’t do anything much because JVR, who appointed him as college president (even if he didn’t have the authority to do so), is, as he would insist, a “man of his words.” JVR said that once Bacaltos gives way, Cañete will be told to follow suit.

Overlooked by the Board in its attempt to settle the Bacaltos vs. Cañete row is the status of TCC’s former president, Tomas Ramos. The Civil Service Commission (CSC) 7 has ordered Ramos’s reinstatement as college president after it deemed his dismissal from the post as illegal.

Ramos has earlier been reported to be in no mood to fight for his reinstatement and merely asked the Board to give him his back pay and allowances. But he can upset the apple cart, sort of, if he wants to.

For now, however, the confusion that hounded TCC’s operation will already be a thing of the past. Enrollees will no longer have to choose to what TCC “wing” they would enroll in, the Bacaltos wing or the Cañete wing. Also, JVR has promised to pay the salaries of personnel that were appointed when Bacaltos was college president.

The next important and crucial step would be the appointment of a new college president. The hope is that the appointment will no longer invite controversy and that politics will no longer intrude into the process. The TCC is such an important institution in Talisay it should be shielded from destructive political tugs-of-war.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on May 29, 2014.


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