Flush the recall petition down the toilet bowl

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By Susan Palmes-Dennis

Straight from Carolinas

Sunday, April 27, 2014


THE world is really getting smaller these days and evidence of that was the information I received about plans set afoot to recall or unseat the Cagayan de Oro City mayor which I got from an acquaintance here in Charlotte, North Carolina.

I met this acquaintance during the Nonoy Zuñiga concert last Saturday whose mother is from Cagayan de Oro. This acquaintance asked me if it was true that Moreno was recalled to which I answered, “I have really no idea.”

Actually I freaked out and went home immediately to read the local papers online but I couldn’t find any news except past columns that touched on the popular recall.

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Could it be true? I might have missed something. My immediate reaction was if it was true then it is insane.

But the other part of my brain told me this story isn’t true, that it was made up by a few silly people out to discredit Moreno. But I’ve been reading about plans to recall Moreno through the local papers.

Then I started asking people about it and this I have gathered. There was a meeting held at the house of former mayor Vicente Emano where a self-appointed lieutenant proposed to those in attendance to file a recall against Moreno. A name of a businessman was mentioned as a financier to shoulder the recall petition expenses.

So this lieutenant is moving the sea to the mountains, so to speak, by initiating the signature campaign through house-to-house visitations.
It was whispered in my ear that there are “barangay kapitanes” under Padayon Pilipino that while loyal to Dongkoy aren’t thrilled with the idea. These are the same “kapitanes” who are friendly to the Moreno camp who informed him about what’s happening.

So let’s talk about the recall process. What is it? As far as I can remember it’s a mechanism provided under the Local Government Code (Republic Act 7160 I guess) that would allow the public to unseat an incumbent official whom they’ve lost all trust and confidence in. The Visayan translation is “ang pagsalig wala na giod (The trust is gone).”

The same provision provides for the period within which to file the petition and also what the Commission on Elections (Comelec) would be doing in the meantime upon receipt of the petition. I fully agree with the rationale of the recall but I don’t agree when it is being used not by the people but by “politicos” or politicians who want to stay in power until their death in office.

These are the very same politicians who will manipulate everyone including their families to gain power. If the people of Cagayan de Oro don’t have confidence in Mayor Oscar Moreno then by all means they should start the campaign on their own and not be goaded by self-serving, manipulative, power-hungry politicians. Cagayan de Oro City residents shouldn’t give the time of day to this councilor who has nothing better to do than to demonize Moreno in order to prop himself up and his discredited patron back in the halls of power.

Let the people, the majority of the city residents, and not Dongkoy’s barangay captains and his cabal work for the recall if they so desire. Loss of confidence my foot, this early when Moreno is barely in his first year in office? That’s a big fat NO. I asked Maricel Casino-Rivera, City Information Officer, on what Moreno’s stand is on the recall petition and she said Mayor Moreno welcomes it.

There are too many recall petitions filed before the Comelec and the results are discouraging to say the least. Why, a recall petition against Emano didn’t prosper at all and it was only in last year’s elections that he was soundly and convincingly booted out by city residents, who cannot stomach his brazen neglect and corruption of aid given by international and national groups to the victims of the 2011 Sendong typhoon devastation.

In the annals of recall petitions, it is only the politicians and not their backers who benefit. It is the politicians like Emano, his deluded minions, and his ilk who had the gall to demand from others to spend money for them in a fruitless and futile recall petition venture intended only to slow down and humiliate Moreno’s administration.

I pity the businessman and others like him who are made to spend for Emano’s recall petition—yes it’s Emano’s recall petition—because the former mayor doesn’t want to spend his “own money” for his misadventure.

To that I say, yeah right. I think Moreno is confident enough to trust that people understand that he is still working on how to improve the city after a decade of decay under the Emano regime.

There may be a recall election and Dongkoy may run but I am 100 percent sure that Moreno will win again and the former mayor would have been defeated twice. But I don’t think the people of Cagayan de Oro would be stupid enough to fall for Dongkoy’s invitation to this downward, spiraling road to electoral perdition.

I answer no. The city residents have had enough of Dongkoy’s lung cancer-infected entrails and fecal, cigarette-stained governance. They want another man for the job, one they know won’t fail them at all.

If these allies of Dongkoy in the Cagayan de Oro City Council have any iota of intelligence, any sense of delicadeza and any shred of conscience and humanity in them, they would drop their allegiance to their Padayon Pilipino lord and master and instead throw their unequivocal, unfettered support behind Moreno.

I say give Moreno a chance. Here in the US, after the elections the Americans forget about their animosity and support the incumbent knowing full well that they are helping themselves and not the person in power.
There are still two years left and businessmen spending money for a recall election in order to feed Dongkoy’s perverted sense of entertainment is like flushing boatloads of money down one of the public toilets in Divisoria.

What a criminal waste of one’s funds. Just let Moreno do his job and if he does commit corruption, then take that into account in the 2016 elections.

Otherwise, Cagayan de Oro City residents and the businessman/businessmen and other lowly political lieutenants who are being demanded by Dongkoy to waste their time, money, and votes to unseat Moreno so he could return and perpetuate himself and his minions to power in the City of Golden Friendship would only be royally screwing themselves in the ass.

Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on April 27, 2014.

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