TODAY is a holiday in Cebu City as it celebrates its 73rd Charter Day. This is the last Charter Day celebration for Tomas Osmeña as a mayor, not because he will die but because he will either be a congressman or an ordinary citizen next year. He is running for Congress in the city's south district.

Happy Charter Day!

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Mayor Osmeña has vowed to crack down on dubious herbal supplements if he becomes congressman. Manufacturers of herbal medicines, according to the mayor, are fooling the public by claiming their products can cure all kinds of ailments. Yet their tagline says, “no therapeutic claim.”

Obviously, the mayor's target is his opponent in the south congressional race, Jonathan “Atan” Guardo, who owns Osaka Iridology and sells several herbal medicines. I will no longer mention the names of these products because I might be accused of promoting them.

Now, you know that one of Tomas’s reasons for running is because he hates Guardo. But that is not a public issue; it’s something personal. A congressman should focus on issues and matters that are beneficial to his district and the country and not run after his political opponents.

Is Osmeña jealous of Guardo because he made money out of his products? But Tomas also made money as sales agent of his pet project, the South Road Properties (SRP). He is now a millionaire after serving as mayor for more than 10 years.

I am not defending herbal medicines, as I am endorsing similar products in my radio program. But these supplements have been approved by the Bureau of Food and Drugs (BFAD), a government regulatory body. Meaning, they passed the standards.

We should therefore allow consumers to decide if they want to patronize Guardo's products. Poor people who are ill opt to look for alternative medical approaches just to be cured.

They even go to quack doctors or “tambalan.” Ang mga tambalan motutho lang nimo ug mama nga nagdalag laway. Unya ang imong feeling nga naayo na ka.

Good for Tomas because he is a millionaire and was able to go to one of the best hospitals in the world and hire the best doctor to treat his illness, urinary bladder cancer.

Pero kamao gyod ang Ginoo. Ang mayor dako og kita sa SRP, pero igo ra pod gibayad sa pagpatambal sa iyang sakit. But why won’t the mayor try Guardo's products, like those that “cure” arthritis and “protects” your heart, kidney and liver. Naa pay produkto nga makapadugang sa libido. Suwayi na, Mayor Tom kay basin diha ra ka maayo.

(bgnalzaro@gmanetwork.com)