Carvajal: Overarching political motive

Carvajal: Overarching political motive
SunStar Carvajal

Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama ascribes his preventive suspension to politically motivated political rivals. But he ought to know every damn thing that politicians do in this country is politically motivated. He ought to know that his suspension is not unrelated to victims pushing back on his politically motivated dream for Cebu.

Isn’t he politically motivated in dreaming of a Singapore-like Cebu? Dreaming is free and does not have to come true if all he wants is for voters to give him the terms of office needed to pursue what he knows is an impossible dream.

Why did he start to modernize Carbon without consulting stakeholders, without guaranteeing ambulant vendors a place in the new Carbon? That’s not the behavior of an official who is conscious of his responsibility to the underprivileged sector of his constituency. It has to be for a purely political reason.

Even his Task Force Gubat sa Baha has all the marks of a politically motivated project. Houses in river easement zones have been demolished without compensation and relocation, in complete disregard of constitutional guarantees and of the guidelines of the City’s Housing Development Board.

He can’t possibly be motivated by improvement of the quality of life of Cebuanos. If he were, he would have consulted stakeholders, compensated for the demolished houses and provided suitable relocation.

With exceptions as rare as white peacocks, Filipino politicians are politically motivated when they limit their planning horizon to their term so as to entice voters to give family dynasty members continued stay in office.

They are politically motivated when they undertake costly projects that would cut them bigger commission to finance family luxuries and their reelection.

They are politically motivated when they refuse to implement the constitutional ban on political dynasties. Implementing the ban would open the gates to the direct participation in government of the underprivileged sector which they consider subordinate and not a worthy group to share power with.

Their refusal to reform our unfair election system is also politically motivated. The system allows only the moneyed to win. Thus we have incumbents winning reelection on graft and corruption money. We have thieves and drug lords or their surrogates winning on criminally acquired money. No issues, just promises wrapped in cold cash.

The overarching political motive is to stay in power and enjoy its privileges. Common good, people’s welfare, these are incidental to the main goal of the family dynasty holding on to the wealth and privilege of power.

In sum, Mayor Rama has only himself to blame for his troubles. Without any concern for their welfare and safety he has dislocated and made so many people suffer loss of income for his politically motivated dream of a Singapore-like Cebu. The disquiet of the victims of this dream is growing and they are pushing back. But they’ve only just begun and his troubles are not nearly over.


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