Golez does Bing a big favor-A A +A
Monday, July 16, 2012
BACOLOD Lone District Rep. Anthony Golez inadvertently boosted Bacolod City Mayor Evelio Leonardia's chances of toppling the incumbent solon from the city's lone congressional seat come 2013.
Last June 27, the solon and PPA officials inaugurated the Passenger Terminal and Port Management Office Building in Banago Port. After the inauguration, Golez talked to the media and stated that he had always wanted to develop Banago into a modern, well-equipped public port.
The solon bandied about a P700 to P800 million project allocation which can immediately be released for the development of Banago Port once the city issues the Port Zone Delineation which will spell out what portion of the port and its foreshore area belongs to the national patrimony and what portion remains covered by the lease of Negros Navigation company.
Problem is, the city slept on the request for the issuance of the port delineation order which he made last year yet, according to Golez.
By any justification—through legalities, technicalities and even kinamatis—Leonardia would not allow the Banago Port development to push through during Golez's term, lest credit for the project goes to the political advantage of Golez whom Bing will be crossing swords with in next year's election for the city's lone congressional seat.
Mayor Bing didn't disappoint.
We are seriously considering the development of Banago Port, the mayor said. City Hall cannot just immediately and haphazardly issue The Port Zone Delineation because it requires a thorough study, it has to go through a process, it needs to be evaluated by the City Development Council, blah, blah, blah.
The Port Zone Delineation requires a resolution from the city council. We have not received any request for such a resolution, added known Bing ally Councilor Caesar Distrito, chair of the Committee on Laws and Ordinances through which such request should pass.
Simply put, Mayor Atty. Bing was saying, "No way, Cong Doc Tony!"
As things presently stand, the project would remain as a piece of parchment on the drawing board. That view still holds true, with a new twist that the Banago Port development issue has precipitated some political alignments in the city.
Golez was treading in deep waters when he declared his intention to develop Banago Port. When he reopened the issue last June 27, he agitated a swarm of bees. Or, to be consistent with our metaphors, we can say Golez angered a school of sharks.
Atty. Sammy Palanca, the grand old man whose vision and persistence gave us the reclamation area and Bredco Port, will not take such a threat to his business sitting down, especially if the threat is from an upstart like Golez.
Palanca and Golez might have been allies during the days of the infamous Gloria Macapagal Arroyo but loyalties are not the same now under PNoy's administration. After all, business is business.
You can't expect the grand old man to just sit idly by, as a young Turk plots to undermine Bredco Port. Even now, Palanca is already hollering to Transportation and Communication Sec. Mar Rojas to stop the development at Banago Port.
By next year, the looming showdown between Bing and Doc Tony will truly break out.
Bing has openly declared his intention to continue his mission of serving the welfare of his constituents, this time as their representative in Congress. It appears the mayor just can't get enough of serving his people.
Golez though has made no categorical statement that he will seek reelection. Of course, he had declared he would run again for Congress, unless he hears a divine whisper for him to pursue other political plans. With that escape clause, his statement can hardly be deemed categorical.
However, Golez has to be man enough to face Bing head on. If the solon opts to run for another position, he will be perceived as a sissy who has no balls to go against Bing, the epitome of a macho guapito politico with his trademark bigote.
In the showdown between Bing and Doc Tony next year, whom can you expect Sammy Palanca to support?
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Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on July 16, 2012.