AGREE OR DISAGREE
By DEMOSTHENES P. MAGLASANG SR.
MANY politicians are not qualified intellectually and in delivering effective public service attached to their elected positions, simply because they won in the election through lies and deceit; vote buying; through popularity and by sheer luck thus the many of them lack the needed qualifications as public servants. Its consequence, in that instant, then they are haunted by the ways of traditional politicians, whose self-aggrandizement had been the primary agent in the corruption of our democratic system. As what President Ferdinand Edralin Marcos once said: “We seek transformations in lifestyle and outlook so that man’s odyssey from poverty or deprivation to the full measure of dignity does not sputter into the farce. We grow and evolve. I have always believed that the most meaningful and substantial act of transformation can, and must take place in the hospitable premises of democracy” How could it be done if those elected public officials are incompetent, as we can see around, only promoting their personal vested interest?
Thanks be to God that we have a president that has the Davidic courage and optimism that defy any Goliath. Yes, he has almost eradicated the illegal drug problems, the war in Marawi City against the Maute terror group is almost finished or concluded. But even these multifarious problems that befallen to the nation, and yet the moving forward of the nation in total development has been accelerated.
We are also thankful to our Great God and Savior Jesus Christ that we have Col. Celso Gomera Regencia as City Mayor and Jemar Pepito Vera Cruz as City Vice-Mayor have moved Iligan City forward to total development, as well as in the nipping in the bud the corruption, the injustices and illegal drugs, and by maintaining to the highest degree the peace and order condition, that resulted in the sprouting of businesses in an unprecedented phase. There is a breakthrough in all these aspects because many of the members of the City Council are qualified to be the city’s lawmakers. However, there are some members that are only promoting their vested personal interest by stepping on the neck of their co-city lawmakers humiliate them, so that they would appear without blemished thus tempted them to run for the highest positions in the city government, say congressman, city vice mayor or city mayor. On that score, then they failed to take cognizance of the fact that City Mayor Celso G. Regencia and City Vice=Mayor Jemar Vera Cruz are unbeatable. They are like the so called impregnable fortress.
We need, as councilor; man with integrity, workaholic and loyal to the people he is under oath to serve, not to the party he belongs, and can deliver effective and efficient public service to the people without discrimination whatsoever. As what President Manuel L. Quezon once said: “My loyalty to my party ends, when my loyalty to my countrymen begin.” We have lot of people that are most qualified to run the city council only not given the opportunity, although popular to the masses and clothed with a moral compass. I am referring to a man who was a victim of injustice with no means to vindicate his rights as far as monetary consideration is concerned, because the man that hired a gun-for-hire to assassinate him was powerful… in other words… rich and famous… that was before. But now on the run, perhaps to save his own life because of his implication in illegal drugs, as what President Rodrigo Roa Duterte had previously announced for two times during the President’s nationwide TV interview. I am privileged then to introduce his name without fear of exaggeration… he is none other than the Officer-In-Charge of the City Information Office, the articulate, fearless, indefatigable, intelligent and loyal public service and to City Mayor Celso G. Regencia… that man is Jose Cagalawan Pantoja, which I presume to believe that he is the man the City Council needs. He may not have the plan yet as of now or wishes to join in the political cauldron, but to me he is the best that has the guts and intellect to stabilize any excesses of self-vested interest city councilor/s. Aside from that input, he can present the City Council in any forum, be it national or otherwise. He is an experienced media practitioner, in fact, in several times, and even lately, he was interviewed by local, national and international TV network regarding the war in Marawi City and the just concluded Diyandi festival and its culmination on the feast of St. Michael Archangel on September 29, 217. Besides, he is the most loyal to City Mayor Celso G. Regencia. In fact, he is his most trusted men.
If and when he should be deprived again the opportunity to run as city councilor in the next election, he may be likened to one being referred to by Thomas Gray on his Elegy on the Country Churchyard, a portion of which is quoted hereunder, to wit:
“Full many gem of purest ray serene,
The dark unfathomed caves of ocean bear,
For many a flower is born to blush and seen,
And waste its sweetness in the desert air.”
Anyway, there is always an appointed time for everything under heaven, but at this moment in time, we could just say: Only the event shall teach us in its hour. We only hope, in God’s time, he will become a representative of the people of Iligan especially to the masses who are always the victims of injustice at the halls of the prestigious Sangguniang Panlungsod in the future. In that instant, then those who are victims of injustice with no means to vindicate their rights, he shall protect and defend them. And those who have worked and suffered long must be duly recognized, and compensated. (Demosthenes P. Maglasang, Sr., City Information Staff, office of the City Mayor, City of Iligan).
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