Who Will Win in Manila?

Who Will Win in Manila?

The greatest deception men suffer is from their own opinions.

— Renaissance genius Leonardo da Vinci

ON March 8, 2020, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte issued Proclamation 922 declaring the whole country under a state of calamity due to the coronavirus pandemic, and with such proclamation, an executive order was likewise issued through the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID) that the conduct of pre-demolition conferences (PDCs) was temporarily suspended.

However, Mr. Noriel Nacino, president of homeowners in Santa Ana under Pasutema, disclosed that President Duterte’s proclamation and the IATF’s executive order were blatantly disregarded and disobeyed by the new owner of the property on which their residences and homes are located.

It must be noted that the situation here is that we are still facing the impact of the health crisis brought about by the ongoing pandemic; hence, no less than our president himself issued Proclamation 922 because he realizes the extreme suffering that the citizenry is experiencing not only in fear of viral infection but of the increasing unemployment and loss of jobs and income coupled with the rising prices of prime commodities, including petroleum products that triggered the economic recession across the country.

It’s funny though that former Manila mayor Joseph ‘Erap’ Ejercito Estrada, even before the pandemic, was able to understand the quandary faced by Nacino’s group when Estrada’s predecessor, mayor Alfredo Siojo Lim, initiated pre-demolition conferences to throw them out on the streets. Instead of pursuing this tack, Erap initiated efforts to appropriate the disputed property and even put up P12 million for this.

This somehow assuaged the troubles felt by Noriel’s group—never imagining that this would be overturned when Erap lost and the new mayor elected was someone people called charismatic but without mercy or empathy of poor people’s predicaments. Just a few weeks after the new local government chief executive, mayor Francisco ‘Isko Moreno’ Domagoso, took over the city, he reverted the LGU’s policy over the piece of property to conducting PDCs.

AMONG a lot of residents in the city of Manila, the belief is that incumbent vice mayor Maria Sheilah Honrado Lacuna-Pangan, or Dra. Honey Lacuna for short, is running opposed for the mayoralty seat of the country’s capital—despite the fact that there others also running against her, among them the son of the late former mayor of Manila Mel Lopez, Atty. Alex.

Actually, I am really not that acquainted with Atty. Lopez and I only met him in the wake of our dear friend and compadre, Jerry Sia Yap, at the Manila Memorial Park on Sucat Road in Parañaque.

It was only yesterday that I found out that Alex is a close friend of a common acquaintance and well-known workers’ rights advocate—our dear Ka Terry Tuazon who leads the Workers Peasant Party (WPP), Labor Party of the Philippines (LPP) and Partido Lakas ng Manggagawang Pilipino (PLMP) as the three groups’ secretary-general.

Going back to Dra. Honey, if it is her camp that is spreading the belief that their mayoralty aspirant is unopposed, well they better think twice as Atty. Lopez it seems has gained the support of a huge percentage of workers in the city of Manila. And we can also count on the help of a religious group known for its ‘block voting’ policy when it comes to national or local elections.

If things are left on their own course, we believe that Atty. Lopez could certainly give the good doctor a “run for her money”. And what’s more, I really don’t favor another Lacuna because the children are so very far in personality and character than their benevolent father, Danny.

So I ask Manila residents . . . who do you think will win the mayoralty race—Honey or someone else who’s better?


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