|Members of the Town Council in San Fabian, Pangasinan|
By Mortz C. Ortigoza
A police officer of Mapandan town showed sachets of illegal drugs shabu (methamphetamine hydro chloride), marked money his men used to purchase them, and three bullets of 38 caliber pistol confiscated from the alleged drug pusher they apprehended in a broadcast of GMA’s Primera Balita, recently.
The nabbed pusher was apparently still high on drugs when he was interviewed by the reporter of said TV program. But what jolted me in my seat was when the police officer said he mulls either to file a case of illegal drug possession or illegal pushing of shabu, and illegal possession of three bullets of the 38 revolver. Susmariosep, with marked money that consummated the transaction between the pusher and police’s poseur buyer it means drug pushing has ensued already.Drug possession and drug pushing is proverbial miles apart in terms of penalty.
The first is meted only with P300 thousand bail bond for temporary liberty as provided in Section 11 of Republic Act 9165, while the last is a non- bailable offense as provided by Section 5 of the same law. Hepe, baka may plano pa kayong kotongan iyong pusher?
Kahit P300 thousand magbabayad iyan huwag lang siyang kasohan ng non-bailable offense dahil sa three years or more na nililitis siya ay mabubulok muna siya sa kulungan. Saka, bakit bala na ngayon ang nahuhuli? Nasaan na ang revolver? Tsk, tsk, Police Director General Nicanor Bartolome and my friend Provincial Director Sonny Versoza would not like what happened in Mapandan incase the police there charged the culprit with possession of illegal drugs only.
Speaking of Mapandan again, a source told me that re-electionist Mayor Maximo Calimlim, Jr. (a retired army general) is pitted against his older brother for the mayoralty. I was told that what made the brother runs against the former general was due to “family squabbling”.
Several Pangasinenses nowadays have been treated with a “freak show” with almost daily regularity by two “mediocre” radio stations where media men ripped each other in the airwaves. But some of their colleagues don’t like their in-fighting (as a result of their being an apologist to their political patrons).
“They should be ashamed of themselves. They “washed” their dirty linens in public,” a national reporter quipped. “That was good, so their being presumptuous and hypocrites (a fact in the local media world) would be exposed and become their comeuppance,” an opinion writer declared.
I was amused by these squabbling media personalities. Those who listened to their mud throwing were also media men.How could the bigger mainstream listeners patronize their program when they are rooting with patent partiality for their patrons at the expense of fair reporting? Survey cited that the bulk of AM (Amplitude Modulation) band listeners are glued to the prime time commentaries of Bombo Radyo whose policy is to get the two sides of the issues.
But if one is a politician who want to reach a huge market of listeners, the right radio band to tap is FM (Frequency Modulation) where the bigger 18 to 40 age-bracket mostly subscribe. Iyang AM pang matanda lang iyan.
The main source of the news now is TV. That’s why media men Ruel Camba and Joel Fonseca, one of the “elites” according to Bobot Caracas of the local broadcast industry, have been whisked by Aksiyon Radyo to deal “mano-a-mano” with the 6 Pm news of ABS-CBN and GMA so the patrons of the two stations could be neutralized. Abangan ang susunod na survey kong nabawasan na nga ang listeners ng dalawang TV giants versus the duo’s hard hitting radio program.
I bumped recently with Mayor Irene Libunao and Vice Mayor Leopoldo Manalo in Lingayen where we discussed my article “TGI’s application for dredging will fail” as told to me by Danny Agbayani, a mayoralty challenger of Libunao.
The duo told me that the dredging, where Trans Global Incorporated will give P400 thousand to Barangay Bued,where Cayanga River is located and P200 thousand to the municipal coffers every month, would not be held in the sea shore but in the river bed of Cayanga. Libunao said that the water there is knee deep only because of the accumulation of silts.
When it floods, the water there overflows and affects the residents who lived on the peripheries. Manalo told me that the agreement with TGI is it quarries the sand there while it gets the 30 percent of sands that contain the magnetite black minerals, while the 70 percent will be dumped to the seashore and the river banks to mitigate the floods. “But the law says if what one exploits is magnetite sand; the construction firm should be getting a permit from Mines and Geosciences Bureau?” I posed to Manalo. He told me that MGB told them to pass first a council resolution that favors TGI then MGB will issue a permit.
The vice mayor said that the leadership of the MGB encourages them to allow the quarry because it helps dredge the river.
Believe it or not, Solo de Venecia told me recently that Vice Mayor Belen Fernandez has a campaign chest of P300 million to beat to pulp Mayor Benjie S. Lim in the mayoralty contest in Dagupan City next year.He said as of press time, Lim was able to muster only P76 million campaign funds. “The family of Belen has prepared for this fight of their lives,” quipped by Solo who runs under Belen for city dad’s post.
But someone told Solo to stop lambasting Benjie every time he joins Belen’s regular consultations in the villages. “Benjie, incase he wins, will not renew the business and mayor’s permits of your two beauty clinics (in Dagupan City)”. Solo sensing the “clear and present danger “ his antics brought against Benjie changed his tone and “praised” Lim to high heavens by declaring poetically:
“Inspite of the (political families) Fernandezes, Manaoises, and Reynas throwing their lot behind Belen, inspite of the Dukes, knights, and Queen behind Belen, Benjie got Ninoy Aquino (P500 peso bill) and Tito, Vic, and Joey (P1000 bill). Sanamagan, that’s Solo de Venecia at his best — whose ding-dong style of declamation has probably been influenced by his rabble raising uncle former five-time Speaker Joe de Venecia.
Solo also reacted to my last week’s column “ (Brian) Lim: A possibility he runs for congress”. He said the Lims could not afford to open another front because they are enmeshed with the fight of their lives too in Dagupan City. He said Belen does not only got the support of the old political families he mentioned but has to deal on the influence and wherewithal of former Speaker Joe and Congresswoman Manay Gina de Venecia who relished that the Lims would be “politically extinguished” in the political map of the Bangus City after the May 13, 2013 polls.
What can you say my pal — the ramrod and athletic Vlad Mata?
(You can read my selected intriguing but thought-provoking columns at http://mortzortigoza.blogspot.com. You can send comments too at firstname.lastname@example.org)