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Monday, 27 June 2016 13:31

Sound Snipes

BY Jimmy Cabato


Starting out late for the grinding of this piece today. It’s a little past 1 pm..Reason — it has been days past Father’s Day. Alam na, he he he.

It’s barely four days to the oath-taking rites of the new set of officials, and in this city no official word from the  camp of Cong. Celso L. Lobregat on his position as to what his faction would plan on 30th June has been heard.

Just thinking aloud because the bossman had taken by his lonesome self. For sure, his act must have been  a sign of distaste on the perceived local setup. In past several years, the practice was for the congressional representative/s taking his oath together with all local officials.

WS commiserates with Lobregat, as from the way things looked,  Mayor Isabelle Climaco was likely doing a Duterte to presumptive VP Leni Robredo — shutting off Lobregat from the City Hall inaugural rites. If not, relegating him to the back seat.

That’s how the cookie crumbles. Politics, really.

Just how the 30th June ceremonies will go, will paint the political, nay governance, scenario - prodding WS to reprint some lines of yesterday thereto.

“WS crosses his fingers that such a situation would not get in the way of local governance.

Should these ill-feelings worsen, WS does foresee it may. The City Council is split in half between the Lobregat and Climaco factions.

While Vice Mayor Cesar Iturralde takes joy in that he is the tie-breaker, but with the absence of one member during session, that occasion may never come. One and the other side would surely lack one vote to pass any measure that covers financial  obligations.


Bears watching.”

Anyway, there are still four days to that. As of the moment really, even with a son part of the 30th June activity, WS is blind on what to expect. Not that Boday keeps secrets from me, it’s just he, too, seems not in the know.

As things are, city hall could be the venue for all.

Keep watch, D-Day is near.

* * * *

What is certain is, the City Council will hold its maiden session on the 12th of July.

Invited to attend were Climaco, Lobregat and District 2 Congressman-elect Manuel Jose Dalipe.

Vice Mayor-elect Cesar Iturralde said that 300 persons are in its list of guests and invitations are already out.

Bu while Lobregat and Dalipe are invited, no mention was made if both will be given speaking parts.

It’s a foregone conclusion, however, that for sure Climaco will deliver the State of the City Address.

According to Iturralde, other guests will include local and regional directors, barangay officials, non-government organizations, religious, academe, and private groups.

In the afternoon, the maiden session will immediately follow. Up for discussion are the internal house rules and the election for the composition of the different working committees.

* * * *

An improvised explosive device (IED) set at the ground floor of the Provincial Capitol building was recovered on Thursday afternoon, prompting forces of the Zamboanga Sibugay Police Provincial Office (ZSPPO) to  remain on heightened alert.

Police Regional Office 9 (PRO9), Regional Director Chief Superintendent Billy Beltran told Zamboanga Today. The discovery was made by the Provincial Security Group (PSG) at about 4:00 p.m. and was then reported to the Ipil Municipal Police Station (IMPS) under Superintendent Kenneth Mision.

Beltran said the IED was found inside the drawer of the table of Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Office (PENRO) chief Attorney Allan Tolorio.

The police are still looking into the possible connection of the incident with the explosion outside the residence of Atty. Tolorio on or about 1:30 a.m. of June 1, 2016.

Mision said the PENRO chief averred that he has been receiving death threats from unidentified persons.(Eugene A. Lasprillas)

* * * *

The Commission on Elections (Comelec) and its sole accredited citizen arm, the Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (PPCRV), are duty-bound to explain to the Filipino people the discrepancies in their rerspective canvassing of votes.

Thus declared the Confederation of Non-Stock Savings and Loan Associations (Consla) party-list group as it insisted it has strong evidence to prove its claim that votes were manipulated during the last election.

Retired Col. Ricardo L. Nolasco Jr., the group’s first nominee was referring to the conflicting results released by the PPCRV and the Comelec with regard to the total number of votes it received during the May 9 elections.

“How can votes canvassed by the PPCRV from the Comelec transparency server, which essentially are the same votes canvassed by the Comelec in its official canvass, churn out completely different results?” Nolasco, who served the military for almost 30 years, asked.

The Comelec tally showed that Consla garnered 213,814 votes but the PPCRV’s quick count showed the group getting 555,896 votes as of May 11, 2016.

The Comelec results, he said, came as a surprise because statistics-wise, Consla could have easily garnered votes double or even triple that number.

A formal complaint of their grievances is now lodged before the Comelec.

* * * *

The early retirement of Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief Ricardo Marquez, who steps down on Tuesday, two months ahead of his mandatory retirement on August 28, 2016 will create history of some within the police establishment. For the first time ever, a single official will occupy the top four positions - in the 160,000 man-strong organization this coming week, according to The Manila Times (TMT).

Deputy Director General Francisco Uyami will bed the sole occupant of four posts at single time with the upcoming retirement of  other officials.

Deputy Director General Danilo Constantino, the Deputy Chief for Operation, the number three spot in the police hierarchy, is also set to retire this week. Constantino is a member of the Philippine Academy (PMA) class of 1982.

With these retirements, Uyami will hold four positions, at least for two days, before incoming PNP chief Ronald de la Rosa takes over the police organization on July 1, 2016.

The positions Uyami will occupy are PNP chief, deputy chief for administration, deputy chief for operation and Chief of Directorial Staff.

“I’m deeply thinking about all this… on how I could perform those positions,” Uyami humbly said in an interview with Camp Crame reporters. He said it would be better if Marquez will name an officers-in-charge for the three top positions.

But the outgoing PNP chief is hard in not designating OICs.

Uyami gave assurances that even if the top three posts of the police force has yet to be filled, the basic functions of the police such as patrolling, investigation and the campaign against illegal drugs will continue.

* * * *

The rift between the Comelec Chairman Andres Bautista and his commissioners is widening.

Yesterday, the commissioners charged Bautista for lack of leadership.

Now, Commissioner Rowena Guanzon is calling for the investigation of Bautista’s trip to Japan, saying it may have been unauthorized., as he allegedly left for Japan without travel authority from the Comelec.

Guanzon said civil servants traveling overseas are required to present a travel authority to BID personnel at the airport. “I have been wondering how the chairman was able to leave the country.

She also accused Bautista of leaving without appointing any acting chairman. With that, she said, no one is signing important transactions like salaries.

For his part, Bautista belied Guanzon’s accusation in text messages from Japan.

“I have travel authority issued pursuant to Executive Orders (EOs) 459 and 477. The Commission on Audit chair and the ombudsman, as head of agency, also issue their own travel authorities,” he said.

* * * *

President-elect Rodrigo Duterte wants the incoming leadership of the House of Representatives to bar certain Liberal Party (LP) lawmakers from joining the majority bloc in the 17th Congress.

Specifically, they were named as Reps. Edgar Erice of Caloocan City, Xavier Jesus Romualdo of Camiguin and Henedina Abad of Batanes.

Duterte’s party, the PDP-Laban, is inviting lawmakers from other parties, including the LP, to join the majority coalition – except the three congressmen. The source said there are other lawmakers from the LP who are also being blocked from joining the pro-administration bloc but they are appealing to incoming speaker Davao del Norte Rep. Pantaleon Alvarez.

They are being banned for what was termed as the lawmakers’ “unforgivable offenses” committed against Duterte during the campaign, sources said.

Erice was banned for acting as the attack dog for LP presidential candidate Manuel Roxas II; Abad for being the wife of outgoing Budget Secretary Florencio Abad, who is the LP’s ideologue; and Romualdo for allegedly trying to disrupt Duterte’s campaign in his province.