Jun Orendain, a big loss to the city PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 20 July 2015 11:20

Table Talk

BY Mike S Apostol

The resignation of Mr. Antonio Orendain Jr., City Administrator, early last month, is a big loss to the city and Mayor Maria Isabelle “Beng” Climaco-Salazar.

Mayor Beng should appoint the next City Administrator same if not better than Jun Orendain, because if it will be lesser than Jun Orendain, the city administration will be in shambles. His years of experience from at least four mayors is beyond question and in all those years, Administrator Orendain remained in low profile. There was never an intimidation, harassment or favoritism leveled against him all those years and no City Mayor ever reprimanded him for laxity on the job. These are the experiences and character of a public servant that money cannot buy.

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I know Jun Orendain personally, his working habits and management style. He has administered the city responsibly even during those times when the city experienced crucial moments in peace and order, calamity and economic crisis. Jun was firm and in times of crisis, he knows his limits and not go beyond antagonizing the city government. The city government maintains her relationship with the national offices and it was a working relationship of mutual respect. The business community cooperated with the city in all her activities. Jun Orendain instilled respect at city hall because he “led by example”.

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I have worked with Jun Orendain for almost seven years at City Hall and we occupied two of the highest positions at the City Mayor’s Office. Jun Orendain was the City Administrator while I was the City Mayor’s Secretary or Head Executive Assistant V. We never disagreed on all the city’s policies. It was a matter of working respect and we strictly remained in our area of jurisdiction and if there were lapses in our working assignments, we discuss them. It was a matter of “give and take” and internal problems never reached the City Mayor if we can solve it within our level. City Hall during our time was in the right direction. There were nor “eyes and ears” or sycopants (sip-sip) because we did nothing against the city.

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Mayor Beng Climaco-Salazar could have stopped the Civil Service ruling of eligibility requirements, if, she wanted to, because the position is co-terminus and a position of trust. It is her discretion if she wanted to retain Jun Orendain who already served for many years in the same capacity. All the city mayors retained Jun Orendain because they trust him and he can help their administration. We cannot read the mind of Mayor Beng Climaco-Salazar, but perhaps she has a better candidate for the position and we leave that to her discretion. It is all about principles and Mayor Beng Climaco-Salazar might have her own reason and we respect that. “Principles may not buy your potatoes”, but you can sleep soundly if you believe in principles. I have never been terminated as Secretary to the Mayor but I resigned the position before the next elected mayor came, so he can appoint his trusted man. Principles make a better man out of you because after that I was appointed a national position of Commissioner IV, rank of Undersecretary until my retirement two years ago.

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Scoop: Take heart Jun Orendain, you have served the public for many, many years and leave the few remaining years we have for ourselves. Enjoy playing golf and gulp a few rounds of light beer afterward. Your life will be complete, “hold fast to dreams for if dreams die, life is a broken winged bird that cannot fly”. Let us all dream to be happy, healthy and wise.