Mercado: To catch a thief

FORMER Rep. Dong Gonzales is on the warpath and the juramentado has struck Congressman Oca, I hope, not fatally.

Dong has a wrong sense of timing. He could have caused mortal wounds on his nuptial godfather had he hacked him a month ago.

As of now, the voters have already decided on their choices, and no expose and assault on a rival's person or integrity will reverse their choice.

Regardless of the consequence, Gonzales has made his revenge. He claims Oca drew the first blood when Rodriguez accused him of theft in their 2013 contest.

Dong's attack on Oca has the effect of Sen. Trillanes assault on Mayor Duterte and his questionable SALN. The scathing tirades on both Oca and Digong, too late in the day as it were, will not do substantial damage on their present status.

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If Cong. Oca had benefited from Napoles-related projects, so has Dong gained from the Arroyo priority development funds.

There is no need to call each "thief." Both are honorable men.

What matters to their constituents is if the enemies shared the people with the fruit of their labor.

It's okay with the people if the two politicians had earned or amassed wealth in the past. As long as politicians "spread the sunshine," it is no big deal that the commissions came from the CDF pork barrel or Ma'am Janete. Let the people decide which between the pot and the kettle is blacker.

It is wrong for both Oca and Dong to call each other "thief." They have not stolen, what they earned came from the sweat of their brows.

Calling each other a thief gives our people the wrong idea that congressmen are into thievery, no siree. "Ela pu manako, manakitan la mu," is what I tell usizeros. But the code of honor among thieves is breached if you set a thief to catch a thief, no offense to Dong.

*****

It is too late in day for Dong to tar and feather Oca. And there's no need for the latter to dare his godson to debate the issue in public.

The people of the 3rd District have experienced what was their lot during the terms of Ex-Rep. Gonzales and Cong. Oca. "Mas malaking magbigay si Dong," they would say. "Eh mas may pera naman siya kaysa kay Oca," was the retort. Newsmen confirmed Dong's advantage over his nemesis in that department.

People suspect Oca was only sour-grapping when he accused Dong of amassing great fortune. If that is the case, he should not feel humiliated. Some people are smarter than the others.
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