BEHIND THE LINES: Red October PDF Print E-mail
Sunday, 08 March 2015 14:39



San Jose, CA. — This comes close to Tom Clancy’s bestseller involving spies and defectors because it is the month when traditional politicians and wannabees file their certificate of candidacy for elective positions in the 2016 national and local elections. That day will put a stop to all speculations as to who’s running for what position. As for the spies and defectors, they’ll side with whoever’s got the gold.

My guess, based on his pronouncement a year-and-a-half ago that he shall return, Congressman Celso L. Lobregat will try to retake City Hall from the lady he conditionally commissioned the seat of local power in 2013. That anointment, as I recall, came one windy afternoon at Vista del Mar upon consultation with an admirable business couple. That decision also bade “adios” to one of the loyal hands of the magnanimous, humane and gracious Mrs. Maria Clara L. Lobregat. How hurtful it must have been to be told that he was “out” of the mayoralty race because Zamboanga was going to be stormed by a frightful gale from the north (it never happened) dubbed as “formidable”.

Former-all (except for the national entitlements) Erbie A. Fabian could have BUILT-SOMETHING-BETTER had he been given the chance.

Between now (today) and the CoC filing deadline is crucial for Zamboanga. Shall we retain a mayor who pledges to BUILD-BACK-BETTER after the violent Zamboanga siege in 2013, or shall we re-install one who built in his nine years as mayor, six years as congressman before that and another three years as come-backing congressman? They say that the most telling questions are the ones that don’t get asked. This question has been asked time and again and there has been no telling answer yet. I’ll ask it again: Is Mayor “Beng” Climaco-Salazar running for re-election?

For unusually playing his hand early, Mr. Lobregat is gunning for City Hall and will offer the first congressional district seat back to the mayor. (Another Vista del Mar meeting?)This paradoxical situation baffles me. This isn’t a Christmas party where kids exchange gifts! After relishing all the perks that go with the position, will Mayor Climaco-Salazar abdicate her throne she overwhelmingly snatched in 2013?

If Mayor Climaco-Salazar holds her ground and refuses to yield, then clearly we shall witness the election of all elections — a crackerjack encuentro bigger than the Mayweather-Pacquiao fight. Let me explain. In 1981, a Climaco defeated a Lobregat in the national assembly elections. In 1989, a Lobregat came back to defeat a Climaco in the congressional race. Although it wasn’t really a Climaco-Lobregat match-up, a Lobregat won in the 2013 congressional derby. Round four will unfold in 2016 if a Climaco decides that she’s invincible and, therefore, cannot be defeated enough to bring herself and her forces to the battlefield against an equally undefeated and indomitable Lobregat (to go with his magnetism and charisma) who controls most of the countryside votes, sardine workers and businessmen’s wallets. Madam Climaco-Salazar has the religious praying for her, the youth rallying behind her and the vaunted Liberal Party (spelled P-E-S-O) backing her up. Maybe, the military, too.

Otherwise, it’s going to be another dull and predictable election where the victor is predetermined months before she or he is officially proclaimed by the Comelec. No hay sabor, hijo.

I only hope that people would vote for the candidate for what she/he has accomplished and not for what she/he is.