MOST inhabitants of the province look at Cebu City as the center of everything that is Cebu. The surrounding urban centers are looked up as part of the city, of Metro Cebu, and socially or economically, they really do not have separate personality of their own, even if politically they are a geographical unit with a separate political life, living under an independent political structure and governance.

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Thus, somehow, during elections these satellite communities really “live” separate lives. Socially and economically, whatever ails Cebu City also invariably affects them. On these twin matters, they are tied to the apron strings of the mother, and a pinch on Cebu City’s economic buttock would eventually have a resounding cry of pain in Mandaue, or Lapu-Lapu or Talisay City.

Mayor Soc Fernadez’s “Joavan pain” is felt also in Mandaue. But how it will affect Mayor Soc politically is entirely his own responsibility and concern. The other three cities are insulated from Mayor Soc’s political pain as he is, too, of the political problems of Cebu, Mandaue, and Lapu-Lapu cities.

In Mandaue, for instance, I learned that problems of the city had not been carefully attended to by the incumbent city administration. For what cause, it is quite difficult to hazard a guess.

But in a situation such as this, it is the concerned inhabitants of the city that should go out of their way to look for the reason why. They should have not only the political diligence to determine the cause of the local government’s failure to meet the needs of the city, but they should also have the political will to do what is good for the city, and to assert their right to do it.

Come to think of it, this is election season, and they should make decisions.

Well, since we are at it, the same situation in Mandaue could also obtain in Lapu-Lapu, except that the island city appears quite well administered, and its pain in the neck come from the political aspirants who believe they can manage the city better than it has ever been by the incumbent. But while his political detractors say they can do better than Mayor Arturo Radaza, his wife, as his successor, is said to be better than any of his challengers.

What I have, however, are third-party information and I can no more attest to their veracity than I can on the integrity of my sources. But whatever it is that makes Cebu City’s satellite urban communities tick, I can only say that their respective inhabitants deserve the kind of city they have allowed it to be.