On being Christian

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By Menardo Wenceslao

Candid Thoughts

Thursday, July 10, 2014


I DON'T know the circumstance behind the resignation of Provincial Attorney Orvi Ortega from the Bids and Awards Committee (BAC). He wasn’t the one who announced it but Gov. Hilario Davide III. Davide said Ortega wanted to protect the BAC and the governor from the “remnants of those vicious, malicious and unfounded accusations” against him.

Ortega was criticized for the handling of the bidding for Capitol’s security provider and the aborted takeover of Black Pearl Security Agency of the task even if a contract had yet to be signed. He headed the BAC when it handled that bidding process but the governor reorganized the BAC after the controversy erupted and made him its vice-chairman instead.

I would say Ortega’s decision is good because people will always resurrect the Black Pearl issue once the BAC makes another controversial decision. Also, he can now focus on his main task of handling the provincial government’s legal concerns.

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I just hope that the Black Pearl experience has chastened him. As I said before, he should leave that controversy behind and do his job sans fanfare. If he is truly good and honest, then the public will eventually recognize it.

Ortega is a lawyer and he is therefore familiar with the admonition that the wounds from hostile and unjust accusation “can be assuaged with the balm of a clear conscience.

***

Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama is once more talking about transforming the Inayawan dump site into a valuable piece of property. Frankly, the mayor has become repetitive on this matter. I remember him promising to do the same thing during his first term after he announced he was closing the dump site. Nothing happened there.

Instead, the city continued to use the sanitary landfill supposedly as a transfer station before transporting the garbage to a dump site in Consolacion town.

But I doubt if the city is strictly monitoring the landfill activities because I am still hearing complaints from nearby residents. It seems like only people engaged in the garbage recycling business are happy with this setup.

Incidentally, the city unveiled recently a P15 million septic and sewerage facility at the North Reclamation Area. Private haulers will now be required to bring septic tank waste there for treatment before these are disposed in the city’s waterways.

I consider this a welcome development because people living near the Inayawan landfill have long been complaining about the dumping in a waterway of septic tank waste.

Again, some enterprising individuals seem to have cashed in on this practice by simply allowing private haulers to do their thing there.

I hope that with the operation of the new septic and sewerage facility at the North Reclamation Area, private haulers will now allow residents near the Inayawan landfill to breathe fresh air by properly dumping the septic tank waste they are collecting.

***

It looks like the protagonists in the baptismal rite video that went viral in the Internet are showing their level-headedness as they sought to put issue to rest.

Redemptorist priest Romeo Obach, who was caught on video berating the mother of the baby he was about to baptize, did the right thing not only by issuing a written apology but also personally meeting the people most hurt by his tirade. First, he apologized to the baby’s grandmother and finally to the baby’s mother.

Both the grandmother and the mother have forgiven the priest. I like what the grandmother said: “As a Christian, I can accept his apology. The rest, I leave it up to God.”

The priest and the baby’s grandmother and mother are Christians, after all. I hope netizens and other kibitzers can be Christians, too.

(khanwens@gmail.com)

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on July 11, 2014.

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