‘WONDERFUL CONVERSATION.’ Guess who met at the baptism of Cebu Governor Gwen Garcia’s grandson Vincent Xavier, child of Representative Franco “Duke” Frasco and Liloan Mayor Christina Garcia-Frasco at the Pedro Calungsod Shrine and Waterfront Hotel in Cebu Saturday, January 15?

The governor met and talked with the presidential-VP team of Bongbong Marcos and Sara Duterte-Carpio. Cebu City Mayor Mike Rama reported a “wonderful conversation’ with the duo. No word yet from the governor.

Rama had long announced he and Partido Barug would support the team that President Duterte and PDP-Laban would pick, more likely the BBM-Sara team. Guv Gwen and One Cebu still have to tell the public their national candidates. When the November 15, 2021 deadline on substitutions passed, she said it would be “well after that.”

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GOVERNOR’S HEADDRESS. The dress, in which Cebu Governor Gwen Garcia will dance the Sinulog, has a headdress that fashion designer Cary Santiago reportedly said depicts sun rays symbolizing hope. Photos of the governor trying on the gown circulated Saturday, eve of the Sinulog festivity, which used to be held as a street mardi gras. Gwen will dance at the Capitol grounds, live-streamed to the public.

It looks like not the usual headdress, which rests on the head. It’s attached to the gown, providing for a halo-shaped backdrop of the head.

We’re told that a headdress in some cultures represents strength and authority. The wearer in this case wields power and, in the Santiago concept, offers hope amid the crisis.

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NO-VAC NOVAK. A play on words in Serbian tennis player’s name, an item circulated by, among others, columnist Atty. Eddie Barrita: “Parents of Novak Djokovic must have known something way back then as they named him. No Vac. Which is not a Djok. Serb him right, In this time of Kovic.”

Djokovic is currently ranked as the world’s No. 1 by the Association of Tennis professionals. Saturday, January 15, he appealed to a higher Australian court the second cancellation of his visa.

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‘MYSTERY PASSENGER.’ In Metro Manila, authorities tinker with the meaning of words. They call an enforcer of transport rules, riding in a public utility incognito, in plainclothes, as a “mystery passenger.”

It would be fun for passengers of a bus or jeepney to bet on who among them is the “mystery passenger.”

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POLITICKING ON DOLE-OUTS. After Cebu City Mayor Mike Rama presented his report on what he has done in response to Super Typhoon Odette during the Sanggunian’s session Wednesday, January 12, Councilor Alvin Dizon of the minority Bando Osmeña – Pundok Kauswagan (BOPK) belied the mayor’s claim that dole-outs of assistance to residents is done without regard to political color. Kons Dizon did so in Mayor Mike’s face, digitally that is.

Kons Dizon didn’t call the mayor a liar. He just cited an incident in one unnamed barangay where he alleged Milo (Mayor’s Information & Liaison Office), instead of the bry. captain, handled distribution of the P5,000 cash aid and included a person already residing in Lapu-Lapu City and listed three families in one household. He gave no other specifics and other cases that would qualify the practice as rampant or widespread. Dizon promised though to submit a report to the mayor within the week.

Mayor Rama took a risk in announcing a non-partisan policy in the “ayuda” system, even asking minority councilors to join the ceremonial distribution. Critics inevitably would use any lapse or failure.

Rama cannot say now, in effect: Just tit for tat, guys, under your administration, most recently in Tomas Osmena’s 2016 to 2019 term, you used a scorched-earth policy. You shut out and even prosecuted some Barug officials, who were the opposition then. How about the Milo strategy adopted by the late mayor Edgardo Labella in “unfriendly” barangays? BOPK chief Tomas used that first against political rivals in his time.

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