FORMER Cebu City Mayor Mike Rama is a friend. We’ve known each other since we were young lawyers. I cannot claim to being very  close to him but when he asks for my opinion, I give it to him without worrying that I would be misunderstood.

About two months ago, he asked me what I thought if he would seek public office again. I told him it was not a good idea because President Duterte has accused him of being a drug protector. We have a very popular president, I said to Mike, and unless he retracts his accusation, you could not win. Take a leave of absence from politics, Mike, I said. Let the wounds heal first.

Of course, I did not expect him to listen to my advice. He’s the one in politics, I’m the outsider looking in. But he thanked me and said yes, it was time for his vice mayor, Edgar Labella, to take the lead although he would continue to visit the barangays to keep his group intact.

Last week while I was in Bohol, I received a text message from Mayor Tommy Osmeña. It read, “My reply to Rama’s cry from injustice: ‘if you win the elections, that’s justice. If you lose the elections, that’s injustice.”

It turned out that Mike held a press conference after mass on the day before his birthday and there declared that his birthday wish was for justice to be done to him and to the city of Cebu. Nothing wrong there; it is a legitimate wish. One doesn’t have to be a candidate to demand justice.

But his more recent actions do not appear to be consistent with his disavowal of any election plan in 2019. He was spotted directing traffic in Fuente Osmeña, he reportedly made himself visible during the wake for Cardinal Vidal and then, the press conference.

What’s the real score, Mike? Is it true that some of your allies have asked you to run for vice mayor and that the idea has titillated you? Actually, that (running for vice mayor) is not a bad idea although you have to consider how your candidacy would affect the  chemistry in your group. As a basketball player, you know that.

●●●

Chinese businessman Jack Ma spoke with authority when he described the internet speed in the Philippines as “no good.” After all, the Alibaba Group founder made his billions online.

But I think Ma was only being diplomatic and that what he actually meant by the remark he made to students of the De La Salle University last week was that our internet service is bad. I couldn’t agree with him more. And I speak from personal experience.

My service provider is the Philippine Long Distance Telephone (PLDT) company. At the start, internet speed was tolerable. I wished that it had  been faster but hey, at least I could browse and draw mails on my iPad. Then from slow, it became very slow. Yesterday morning, it was practically non-existent.

I complained to local PLDT boss Bong Lintag by text but I still have to receive a reply. Well, maybe text messaging is not up to speed either.