Battle is not yet over-A A +A
Thursday, January 31, 2013
IS ACTING Gov. Agnes Magpale moving to the office that she had ordered padlocked Wednesday afternoon?
She hinted at a transfer yesterday morning during an interview on Frankahay Ta! (101.9 News FM). “It’s one of the options that I am considering,” she told us. Julian Daan, who succeeded him as vice governor, came to see her to ask where he could hold office.
“I told him to wait while I look for a place for myself,” she recalled with amusement.
Magpale had the office of Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia barricaded the other day after she discovered that the latter had left for an engagement in the southern town of Oslob.
The suspended governor had holed herself up in the Capitol since late December last year, venturing out only once when she danced in the Sinulog on January 20.
The acting governor has not set a timetable for her eventual transfer but agreed that it could happen as early as in a week’s time, provided that everything proceeds smoothly, including the re-inventory of all the things inside the locked-up office.
She is moving cautiously apparently because of threats from the Garcia camp to file a rainfall of cases against her.
Garcia, who also was also later interviewed on the same program, appears to have surrendered to the idea that she may not be able to return to her office until after her suspension by President Aquino in connection with the administrative case filed by the late Vice Gov. Greg Sanchez ends on June 17.
She said that she will spend her time visiting the towns and component cities of the province to bring her case to the people. She described the reception that she got from the residents of Oslob and the two other towns that she visited on Wednesday as enthusiastic. “Some of them cried,” she revealed, adding that she was touched by the show of emotion.
In the same program, she accused Magpale of betraying her. She has been good to her vice governor, she said, allowing her to share the limelight with her. “Apparently she envied me and turned against me.”
Magpale had earlier explained that never in her wildest dreams had she thought of someday taking over the office of governor. “I did not will this for myself,” she told us adding that she almost withdrew her candidacy for Board member in the 5th district because she was taking care of a very sick husband.
“But Nito (Durano) prevailed upon me to stay and I ended up with the highest number of votes among the elected Provincial Board members in the province” so that when then Vice Gov. Greg Sanchez died, it was she who had to take his place by operation of law, the same law that required her to take over as governor when Garcia was suspended.
Magpale turned poetic when I asked her if she regretted having been thrust into the maelstrom. “Everything happens for a purpose,” she replied, “even the falling of a leaf.”
Garcia had little room for poetry when we spoke to her. She was still indignant over the turn of events that had left her without a title and an office in a period of two months. “It wasn’t only I that they oppressed,” she said, “but the people who voted for me. I will bare everything to them during the next few months.”
The standoff at the Capitol is, from all indications, over. Magpale’s rule is secure and the last symbol of Garcia’s defiance has been lifted with her departure and inability to return.
But the battle isn’t over yet. It has only shifted to another-–and larger-–arena and before the supreme judge: the people. And unlike the Court of Appeals, which has not rendered a resolution on Garcia’s petition until now, their decision is going to be swift and forthcoming.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on February 01, 2013.