IT is basic. A presiding officer breaks ties when a meeting comes to a vote. But Team Rama hatched something novel. The vice mayor votes to create a tie. It took the DILG to break that tie.
A drinking partner insisted Cebu City Vice Mayor Edgar Labella and fellow Team Rama councilors knew what was right. These legislators, at least three of them lawyers, are not stupid. They merely wanted to delay the inevitable.
Maybe they just wanted to exit while taunting BOPK that was caught flatfooted. I think Mayor Tomas Osmeña’s allies, expecting an easy victory, failed to anticipate the maneuver.
BOPK councilors could just have demonstrated their superior numbers by calling for a vote. It would have looked ridiculous for Vice Mayor Labella to vote and forge a tie. But BOPK chose prudence and sought DILG’s opinion.
The way I looked at what happened, however, Team Rama pursued a wrong strategy.
To recall, the new minority earlier had a different tack. They initially resigned from committee chairmanships ostensibly to pave the way for a smooth turnover. It was statesman-like.
At the last moment, they abandoned honor and opted to appear stupid.
I waited last Monday for President Rodrigo Roa Duterte to say something about the coming barangay elections in his State of the Nation Address (Sona). But no, he focused on more pressing concerns.
Some insist that his silence during the Sona does not mean he has changed his mind about appointing barangay officials instead of proceeding with the elections. After all, there are already talks that several incumbents and barangay official wannabes were supposedly promised appointments by wannabe kingmakers.
Still, the country needs legislation to postpone the barangay polls and empower the president to appoint replacements of those tagged as druglord protectors. They have around two months to do this.
The president has not asked Congress to consider the barangay elections as a priority. I think our legislators would be focused more on the 2018 budget, tax reforms, the rehabilitation of Marawi City. Besides, many congressmen don’t want outsiders to appoint officials within their turf.
Rest assured though that the Comelec had already set in motion preparations for the October 2017 elections. Unya mas gusto man ang mga yanong lungsoranon nga mopili sa ilang mga opisyal.
In last week’s column, I wrote about that poison letter that falsely tagged as “Yellow” Duterte supporter Koko Holganza of the Customs bureau. He was replaced by a Binay supporter.
Today, let’s talk about efforts to block the entry of a Cebu journalist into the Philippine News Agency (PNA) allegedly because he is “Yellow.” This journalist quietly worked as a volunteer at the Duterte Media Center during the 2016 presidential campaign. Don’t abuse the “Yellow” tag please.
Those who seek to block the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) should now take the cue from national DOTr officials. The Duterte administration supports BRT.