GMA pa rin?-A A +A
By Ram Mercado
Sunday, July 22, 2012
IS FORMER President and now Representative Gloria Arroyo underperforming in her job? The answer is “Yes” if we look at the statistics and her present condition.
However, the Pampanga Mayors League (PML) had reacted with perfunctory speed in defending Mrs. Arroyo from insinuations of “underperformance.”
This collective defense, while disregarding individual appreciation and perception of the other mayors outside Representative Arroyo’s area, has invested the issue with political color.
The PML’s vigorous defense of the congresswoman is a signal to Malacañang that Pampanga is united in loyalty and support to the former President. That the Palace keeps monitoring GMA’s level of people support and her residual influence in her power base is an accepted practice.
It is because she wants to run for reelection.
Reports of her perceived or actual underperformance stemmed from the miniscule P35 million in aid she brought to her district in 2010 and 2011. While this amount is a far cry from the tremendous assistance she gave her constituents before her incarceration, Governor Lilia Pineda was quoted as saying “the 2nd district is not neglected because the 20 percent development fund of the Capitol is shared among the province’s four districts.”
There is nothing demeaning in the published report of her underperformance. The PML should shed no further crocodile tears on the matter.
Like boxing champ Pacquiao who had established a record for knock-out matches, GMA holds a record of blockbuster accomplishments in Pampanga.
Each time Pacquiao wins sans a sensational KO, our people get disappointed. So even with GMA’s minor achievements today, she is rated as underperforming.
For whatever shortcoming she has, Mrs. Arroyo had already paid so well and so much in advance when she was president. Bayad ka na sa cabalen, Madam.
Charges of lackluster service during this time and the years ahead would not hurt her image nor will diminish the cabalen’s esteem of their idol.
She has already done splendid and enormous wonders not only in her district but for the whole of Pampanga in her time.
Her early services were the earnest money she paid in advance for whatever shortfall she would have as representative.
The only area where she is eminently underperforming is her involuntary silence as a detainee. Unlike Burma’s heroine, Aung San Suu Kyi, GMA seems to have lost her voice as opposition leader. She is unable to articulate her views on national issues.
Consequently, Pampanga has lost a strong and passionate voice in Mrs. Arroyo’s sequestered state.
If her people reelect her – and chances are they would despite her absence – their expectation will not be for what she would deliver in projects. She would get reelected because she deserves the reward. They would do it out of gratitude.
Governor Pineda can take consolation in that even if she will not support or campaign for her dear cumadre, GMA can win by herself.
By her peculiar dilemma under an immutable circumstance, being the wife of Mr. Rodolfo Pineda, Nanay Baby is held in estoppels to extend political support to her amiga in 2013. What she owes GMA, and what GMA owes her our people understand.
At this point, PML should not create unnecessary noise so as not to exacerbate President Noy’s vengeful attitude or lingering ire on the ailing congresswoman.
Published in the Sun.Star Pampanga newspaper on July 23, 2012.