Distancing act PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 11 August 2016 13:46

Sound Snipes

BY Jimmy Cabato

Does the influence of Mayor Beng Climaco-Salazar hold sway over her underlings in the Liberal Party (LP)?

This evidently is under test now, as she appealed to newly-elected District 2 Councilor Teodyver Arquiza, her party mate to turn himself to the authorities and submit to the process of the law.

But strikingly, the Mayor’s later statements picture an atmosphere seen to insinuate, Climaco is dissociating Arquiza to the LP.

Look over. Climaco, in a regular press briefing was quoted as saying, “I would like to believe that your membership to the party ends when you are elected. I have hopes.” She added, the  wheel of justice must prevail. Whatever she meant by that, appears vague — as first glance readings suggest, the Mayor is leaving Arquiza’s fate to his legal counsel — hinting deeper, it is possible that Arquiza’s camp might be preparing some pleadings to be filed, such as a motion for judicial determination of probable cause asking the presiding judge to revisit once more the issuance of the warrants of arrest.

Markedly also, she declared, the mayor being the chief executive officer is limited to administrative cases only.

And that implies a distancing act.

Asked about the plan of the LP on the present status of Arquiza, Climaco said that everything is based on the Sangguniang Panlungsod internal rules and procedures. At this moment, she claimed she cannot really give any exact answer on whatever will happen to Arquiza.

Meanwhile, City Jail Warden Supt. Julius Arro on Monday bared that there will be no “VIP” treatment for Councilor Teodyver Arquiza in the event he would be arrested and detained at the Zamboanga City Jail.

Arro said, regardless of Arquiza’s profession or position in the government, he will be treated in the same manner as other ordinary inmates, except those with death threats.

The warden said that if in case Arquiza had received threats, the bureau will provide him proper security for his safety.

To Emily Eijansantos, the former barangay treasurer of Talon-Talon, who was among those charged for the same offense along with Arquiza and Ibalio, Arro said the bureau will give all the necessary attention to, as she is reported to be infanticipating.

Eijansantos has surrendered to the police, while Arquiza and Ibalio remain missing and believed to be in hiding.

The three were charged of malversation through falsification of public documents while a separate case was filed against Arquiza and Ibalio for graft and corruption last Thursday.

* * * *

President Rodrigo Duterte threatens Martial Law as Sereno demands warrants of arrest against sitting judges, and lashed out at Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno for questioning his shame campaign against “narco-officials.”

Speaking to the military in Cagayan de Oro City on Tuesday, Duterte went into an outburst over Sereno’s letter that branded as “premature” his call on judges allegedly involved in illegal drugs to surrender.

Duterte chided Sereno for demanding that warrants of arrest be issued against the accused judges, arguing that it would take three to four months to secure warrants and that it would be impossible if this was also applied to the estimated 600,000 drug suspects.

He reminded the Chief Justice that as President he has the mandate to protect the people.

“You are the kingpin in the judiciary while I am an elected President,” he said.

“The judges of the court do not conduct patrols and court sheriffs don’t arrest criminals. Do not order me kaydili ko gago (I am not an imbecile).”

Turning the table on Serfeno, it was Duterte this time who declared,  if Sereno insists, she risks a constitutional crisis as the Executive department will not follow all judicial orders, Duterte said.

Amid Sereno’s concerns over Duterte’s methods, the Supreme Court on Tuesday appointed a retired associate justice to investigate four of seven judges linked by the President to the illegal drug trade.

As the ink on above-written item has barely dried, Duterte sings another tune, President Duterte vowed to purge the government of misfits and scalawags without having to declare martial law.

“There will be a purging, actually. Without declaring martial law, I will cleanse this government. Magpu-purge talaga ang gobyerno sa mga may kaso . Government will nbe purged of cases.) However, Duterte made it clear that he is using the term in the generic sense, without explaining further.. He also emphasized that his words are not accusatorial nor are they criminal information, explaining this time, “It’s just my word against the others, because I have the duty to tell the pub lic para malaman nila ang danger sa ating bayan…” He added, “It is not the duty of a President to threaten people, that is not my job. But I am warning you.”

* * * *

Opposition to the hero’s burial for the late President Ferdinand Marcos, mounts as a coalition of human rights, civic and people’s organizations “of all shades of colors” is planning to troop to Rizal Park on Sunday to protest the hero’s burial of former president Ferdinand Marcos at the Libingan ng mga Bayani, and is also eyeing a class suit to block it.

“Albay Rep. Edcel Lagman raised the possibility of filing a case at the Supreme Court to obtain an injunction on the burial.

Another option is a class suit against the Executive Secretary, the Secretary of the Department of National Defense and the chief of the Armed Forces of the Philippines.

Lagman said he was hoping popular opposition would change President Duterte’s mind.

President Duterte, however has described the move to give Marcos a hero’s burial as “historical justice.”

If only people will accept the President’s decision, all these animosities which are things of the long gone past, will die a natural death.

Meanwhile, the Armed Forces is moving to guarantee the safety of the Marcos family and their during the burial rites. Col. Benjamin Hao, Philippine Army spokesman said the Marcos family has the privilege to have a solemn time with their dearly departed.

* * * *

Then there are two. From only drug lords reportedly pitching in for a juicy bounty, a mayor in Mindanao is reportedly planning to murder President Rodrigo Roa Duterte and Philippine National Police Chief Ronald dela Rosa. In an interview at the ABS-CBN morning show, the chief PNP said intelligence reports point to an incumbent mayor in Mindanao planning to use IEDs (improvised explosive devices) for these planned assassinations.

He added, the plan is being hatched with the expertise of the Philippine chapter of terrorist groups, BIFF and ISIS

“We are seriously looking at this threat; pero kung totoo ito, unahan na lang kami,” (But if this is true, it’s  race to between us), dela Rosa said.

Dela Rosa said the “narco-mayor” is said to be affected  by the government’s increased campaign illegal drugs trade. He, however, declined to identify the local government official.

The PNP chief also said he is not changing any of his routine, despite the threat in his life. He is scheduled to visit all PNP regional offices in Mindanao.