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Friday, April 26, 2019
CEBU

Bzzzzz: Absence of Magpale at Hugpong rally in Mandaue; Silawan ex-boyfriend still a suspect; ghosts and penises in Toledo

CEBU. Antonio Yapha (left) and Cebu Vice Governor Agnes Magpale. (SunStar File)

THEY'RE talking about...

* GHOSTS AND PENISES IN TOLEDO. Toledo Mayor John "Sonny" Osmeña is accused of hiring ghost employees at an environmental project of City Hall. Sonny is running for congressman but relies on Toledo voters to help him win the race. His return fire is against Vice Mayor Antonio Yapha, who is running for reelection but not supporting Sonny's bid. Yapha has reportedly been circumcising many Toledo youths for free. Not free, Sonny alleged. Yapha's work on penises is paid for by Medicare, Sonny said.

Would the ghosts hurt Sonny's chances? Would the work on male adolescents' sex organ boost Yapha's reelection?

* FINISH OFF NPA IN 2 YEARS? That is the reported prediction of DILG Chief Eduardo Año. The NPA has been operating since 1969. The armed wing of the Communist Party in the Philippines will turn 50 this Friday, March 29. Año sees the end of the NPA while President Duterte has given up hope of forging peace with the communists, saying they only know "armed struggle," two words that, Digong says, mean violence. Año must refer to the crushing of the NPA by military might. To Año, the government can do in two years what it has failed to do during the last half century.

Explainer on Silawan suspect

The teenage suspect in the murder of Christine Lee Silawan of Lapu-Lapu City is not off the hook, not yet.

He still has to answer the complaint of murder filed by the NBI with the Lapu-Lapu prosecutors.

He is undergoing preliminary investigation for the killing although he is not detained, by police, NBI or DSWD in the latter's "Bahay ng Pag-asa."

The 17-year-old boy will be tried like an adult if the prosecutor will find "probable cause" against him and charge him in court. That means it agrees with the DSWD finding that the suspect "acted with discernment" when the crime was committed. The prosecutor will state that fact in the information.

VG allies at Hugpong caravan

At the Mandaue City stop of the campaign caravan of Hugpong ng Pagbabago last Thursday (March 21), some people identified with Agnes Magpale were sighted. What were they doing there? The rally would have Sara Duterte-Carpio pitch for senatorial candidates of Hugpong and endorse Mayor Luigi Quisumbing whose slate is allied with the political party. Davao City Mayor Sara is Hugpong founder and campaign manager.

Here's an account from a Bzzzzz contributor: "Magpale was not invited by Luigi...Sara didn't like it, saying she wouldn't show up if Magpale was there. Luigi told Magpale 'nga di puwede' because the Davao organizers control the guests and he had no say about it. So the ending, no Magpale at the rally... The problem was that Magpale already told her allies they were invited and Sara would raise their hands." That may explain the absence of Magpale and the presence of the vice governor's allies from Talisay and San Fernando at the Mandaue rally.

Another fiasco at a "Sara event" in her two-day sortie in Cebu was reported by the same Bzzzzz source. There was supposed to be a breakfast meeting at a hotel with Duterte-Carpio and seventh district leaders "like Caminero and Calderon, etc." A Hugpong senatoriable who was "dragged" to the Magpale group showed up but the president's daughter did not.

Even before Sara's arrival, some radio propagandists already minimized her capacity to draw votes for the local bets she would endorse. Yet the reported efforts of candidates to enlist her support appear to negate that claim.

Earlier, in a previous Cebu visit, Sara also raised Magpale's hand and her camp says it has photos to prove it. Agnes is facing returnee Representative Gwen Garcia for the post of governor. Governor Junjun Davide is running for vice governor, opposite One Cebu bet Daphne Salimbangon.

The complication must make imponderable the hand-raising rituals by President Duterte and daughter Sara in local political fights. Particularly so, when the separate endorsements from father and daughter clash or when Digong and Sara raise the hands of rivals in the same province, town or city, one after the other.

Rooting for next speaker

Hugpong leader Sara apparently has not limited conflicting endorsements to local candidates. She also is doing the same thing to aspirants for the seat of the next House speaker.

In Leyte, she introduced as "the next speaker of the House" soon-to-be congressman Martin Romualdez. In Marinduque, she also introduced Representative Lord Alan Jay Velasco as "the next speaker of the House." She still has to endorse former foreign affairs secretary Alan Peter Cayetano, who's running for his old congressional seat in Taguig. Cayetano was the original buddy in the tandem that ran in 2016. Duterte won but Cayetano lost.

The purpose apparently is to draw as much support for Hugpong senatoriables as possible, never mind what complication the conflicting endorsements would bring.

Her clout in the House was displayed last year when she engineered the ouster of then speaker Pantaleon Alvarez and installed former president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo in his place.

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