Arthur Tugade of CDC, Mike Tapang of Porac-A A +A
By Ram Mercado
Tuesday, January 22, 2013
LIKE Moses whom God tasked to bring the children of Israel out of bondage, the new president and CEO of Clark Development Corporation descended in Pampanga bringing his version of the Ten Commandments.
The gods in Malacañang had assigned Atty. Arthur Tugade to take CDC out of the doldrums, save it from financial deterioration and strike the fear of the Lord, through the Matuwid Na Daan, on its executives, personnel, as well as the absconding (delinquent) locators.
Tugade who came from the stock of hardworking and God-fearing Ilocano families in Cagayan, has the looks of a swarthy sunburned farm boy. He grew up under harsh conditions in Manila, toughened by life at the north and south harbors thus imbibing the gruff and colorful stevedores’ lingo.
It is not infrequent that he uses cuss words when he gets aroused and passionate on an issue.
Some items on his Ten Commandments tablet included the strict enforcement of the 1) Smile policy on all personnel; 2) Adherence to punctuality, and 3) The non-acceptance or solicitation of gifts in whatever occasion. The other commandments are soon forthcoming.
When his son, a scholar in a Canadian University, asked for a summer job in the family corporations, the young Tugade was made to take off his coat, roll up his sleeves and sent to menial work to learn the ropes.
The company executives were ordered not to treat his son to dinners or indulge him in any way. Such is the way of the corporate drillmaster.
He had evaded the many previous attempts to work in government until last November when he saw the burning bush. It was the Lord of Malacañang who sounded the call. “At my age, 67, I am set in my ways and thinking that accepting a government job was not my real dream,” he said.
His vision and leadership at CDC center in his obsession on “culture” as the template of reforms, changes and work ethics. Then a “set of values” to elevate the personnel to excellence and maximum productivity. He emphasizes his time-tested “way of doing things” to strike a difference. It is the key to all the success in his seven corporations.
When he was informed that local politicians will pose a problem to his style of management, he said, “I am not afraid to work with the elective officials whom I know are essentially good and who know what is best for Pampanga.”
There are three things he was afraid of: politicians who can destroy; the media who can recreate himself, and corruption that leads to moral perdition.
Former president now 2nd District Rep. Gloria M. Arroyo can win a reelection even while under hospital arrest, according to a Porac business leader and official.
“This reality will be a fact rather than a myth,” reported Porac municipal councilor Mike Tapang who is known to be a major leader of former PGMA in his town. He is a regular visitor of Madame in her hospital suite.
The belief that Mrs. Arroyo, who is under prolonged hospital detention, may win another term in Congress has been widely held by Pampangos.
I have diligently asked local residents at random if she would get reelected without personally campaigning for her seat.
Councilor Tapang’s confirmed findings that GMA would find an easy sailing in her electoral bid. He has moved around the district taking the public pulse.
Mike Tapang had deferred to the quiet wish of Gov. Lilia Pineda that he desist in his intent to run for vice mayor. A close ally of Nanay Baby, Mike is an NPC card-bearing member.
He chose to reelect as councilor and chances are he would win as No.1. His closest rival is Maynard Lapid, son of the Senator, and younger brother of former governor Mark.
Residents said there is an obstacle on Maynard’s candidacy. The rumor is that he is an American citizen. There is a law that persons holding dual citizenship cannot qualify or run in public office. Will the Lapids look into this for clarification? If Maynard’s situation is similar with that of actor Aga Muhlach, a dual citizen, then he has little problem.
Mike’s pipedream of realizing the 16-KM West Lateral Dike project of which he is the proponent, can only be achieved with the endorsement and support of Gov. Pineda. He has hitched his political wagon to the Pineda star to the extent of putting his dream for the mayoralty under hold.
Published in the Sun.Star Pampanga newspaper on January 23, 2013.