COULD the Cebu City Government not have honored Gervasio Lavilles without trying to blemish the reputation of Vicente Rama?

All right, Lavilles deserved to be recognized as municipal board member who sponsored the resolution requesting the Legislature to convert the town of Cebu into a city. And the city named Lavilles as one of the Charter Day awardees last Feb. 24.

The request was collegial: the board then, not just Lavilles, asked. Approval, nay initiative, of the local government was essential.

Lawmaker’s job

Yet Rama had to file the bill, get support from peers and shepherd it through the long and tedious process of the national legislative mill.

“Nyor Inting” was schooled in Seminaryo de San Carlos and Liceo de Manila law school, and a former municipal board member who would later on serve as city mayor and senator at large.

His education and legislative experience should tell anyone that he could write the proposed bill by himself. Yet, assuming Lavilles proposed a draft, it couldn’t be said “he did all the work.” Rama must have reviewed and edited it. Besides, lawmakers to this day tap writers and researchers to prepare the bills they file. But the elected congressional member is responsible for and takes credit from the law passed.

A lot more work

Lawmaking is a lot more than writing the bill. It’s also arguing, pleading, making trade-offs, as one plods on the legislative trail, from committee to plenary. Ask any veteran in Congress. It’s no walk in the park, especially when the bill is opposed back home, as the city charter reportedly was, by local leaders who didn’t want the “municipio” severed from the province.

Honor Lavilles for whatever part in the making of the charter. Relevantly, no historical proof of how much work he really did. Mayor Tomas Osmeña who extolled Lavilles and minimized Rama’s title didn’t say.