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Antique on brink of chaos as Mar Roxas dilly-dallies

“A perfection of means, and confusion of aims, seems to be our main problem.” Albert Einstein

By Alex P. Vidal

INSTEAD of an ounce of prevention, a pound of cure is now needed to solve the leadership crisis that hit Antique, which now has two governors.
With two governors—Exequiel Javier and Rhodora Cadiao—jockeying for the post, Antiquenos are now in a state of confusion as to who they will recognize.
Even supporters of the two governors are starting to get restless and irritated by the perplexing turn of events.
The Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) led by Secretary Mar Roxas hasn’t intervened.
If Roxas was decisive enough, the political standoff in Antique would have been prevented earlier.
Antique needs a win-win solution to its problem at the capitol.
A phone call to Javier convincing him to step down over the weekend would have been enough to avert the leadership crisis.
Roxas would have reminded Javier that in Laguna, Governor ER Ejercito left capitol peacefully in May 2014 after being convinced by his uncle, Manila Mayor Erap Estrada, thus averting any violence.
Ejercito was also disqualified by the Comelec for overspending.
DILG was supposed to serve the writ of execution issued by the Commission on Elections (Comelec), which earlier disqualified Javier for violation of Omnibus Election Code.
A week had passed since a transition of power was supposed to take place at the Antique capitol when Javier failed to secure a temporary restraining order (TRO) from the Supreme Court, but the DILG didn’t show up to install Vice Governor Cadiao as the new governor.

CENTRAL

The writ of execution was still in the DILG central office in Manila and was not yet transmitted to the regional office as of press time, it was reported.
Meawhile, Cadiao took her oath of office at the session hall of the Provincial Board in the old provincial capitol around 4:30 p.m. Thursday, January 29 administered by Atabay, San Jose Barangay Captain Jay Aster Hiponia.
After the oath-taking, Cadio declared: “I am both humbled and honored by this great task of assuming the leadership as governor of our province in this time of great crisis. Twenty-seven years ago we lived in a shadow of fear and despair. Today, we start a new day to live in the sublime sunshine of hope and change.”
Javier asserted that there was no vacancy in the governor’s office insisting that only the Supreme Court can oust him.
Comele Chairman Sixto Brillantes, however, declared that Javier’s disqualification was final and executory.
Javier’s Waterloo came after he suspended Valderrama Mayor Joyce Roquero in January 2013 in violation of the Omnibus Election Code, which prohibits the suspension of local elected officials within election period.

REFUSE

Javier has refused to step down and his supporters continued to mass up in the capitol ground in San Jose de Buenavista to show support after he exhorted them earlier to “protect your votes” insisting that the Comelec ruling “is only temporary.”
With two governors, department heads are now in quandary.
If banks can’t decide which signature to acknowledge in capitol-issued checks, basic services will be hampered.
Once the writ of execution will be issued by the DILG regional office anytime, there is still no guarantee that Javier will relinquish his post.
He earlier said he would respect the decision of the Comelec.
But now, Javier said he will only obey the decision of the Supreme Court.
The events that will unfold in the next three weeks are worth watching.

 
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Posted by on January 30, 2015 in POLITICS

 

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The gods ‘angered’ by Gov. Javier’s hubris 

“Whenever I’ve had success, I never learn from it. Success usually breeds a degree of hubris. When you fail, that’s when you learn.” Moby

By Alex P. Vidal

ANTIQUE Gov. Exequiel Javier will only have himself to blame if he loses his position for disqualification.

Like Sisyphus, whom the gods condemned to ceaselessly roll a rock to the top of a mountain, whence the stone would fall back of its own weight, Javier had it coming.

Like Prometheus, the governor’s hubris did him in.

They make mad first whom the gods wish to destroy?

The younger brother of the late ex-governor Evelio, a national hero, had been warned that his Executive Order No. 003 dated Jan. 23, 2013 preventively suspending for 30 days Mayor Mary Joyce Roquero of Valderrama, was illegal.

It violated the Omnibus Election Code that prohibits the suspension of any elective local executive within the election period.

The previous election period started on January 13, 2013 until June 12, 2013.

But he ignored the law, nay the warning.

The governor, who had served as congressman for three terms, probably underestimated the enemy.

In fact, Javier said he was “willing to face the music” (in fairness to Javier, he actually said he would respect the Comelec decision).

GROUND

Javier’s act was a ground for disqualification under Section 68 of the Omnibus Election Code, Brilliantes explained.

But Javier was unfazed.

Upon the recommendation of the Provincial Board, he suspended Roquero, who was facing administrative case filed by her vice mayor, Christopher Maguad.

The vice mayor charged Roquero for gross misconduct, dereliction of duty and abuse of authority for reportedly allowing the alleged illegal operation of a gasoline station.

It was a simple case of conflict between a town mayor and vice mayor that turned into a tsunami.

For agreeing with the Provincial Board, Javier’s eyes were zapped by the tiniest mote of dust.

If he did not implement the Provincial Board recommendation, there would have been no disqualification case filed against him.

Barring unforeseen circumstances, Antique will have a new governor starting Monday, January 26.

INSTALL

Rhodora Cadiao, the incumbent vice governor, will be installed as governor by the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) after the issuance of the writ of execution by the Commission on Elections (Comelec).

This became apparent after the Supreme Court did not grant Javier’s petition for a temporary restraining order (TRO) to stop his disqualification.

His ouster was final and executory, according to Comelec chairman Sixto Brillantes.

Interestingly, Javier’s political opponent, the late board member Arturo “Turing” Pacificador, will be buried on January 24 in Lapaz, Hamtic, Antique.

Pacificador, who spent years in jail for charges that he conspired to murder Evelio before he was acquitted, died on January 11, 2015, a day before the Comelec ordered Javier’s ouster with finality.

 
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Posted by on January 22, 2015 in POLITICS

 

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Beloy, Turing now gone but  Antique is still wounded

“Look around. There are no enemies here. There’s just good, old-fashioned rivalry.” Bob Wells

By Alex P. Vidal

THE political wound in Antique was never healed.

Now that both Evelio “Beloy” Javier and Arturo “Turing” Pacificador are gone, the chances for remnants of both camps to bury their hatchet appear to be nil.

Javier, a former governor, was assassinated on February 11 1986 after the snap presidential elections. He was 44.

Pacificador, a former assemblyman, succumbed to cardiac arrest on January 11, 2015 at the Antique Medical Center in San Jose de Buenavista. He was 84.

The intense rivalry of both political titans during the Marcos era placed Antique on the map.

Both outstanding public servants were so popular that when one of them was defeated in an electoral contest in the province, Antiquenos didn’t give a damn.

History was so unkind to Pacificador, a provincial board member before his death, because he was implicated in the Pangpang massacre and in Javier’s murder that helped spark the EDSA Revolution and toppled then President Ferdinand Marcos.

The death of Javier, a top ally of the late former President Corazon Aquino, signaled Pacificador’s decline in politics as he became a fugitive for 18 years.

ACQUITTED

He was, however, acquitted in both controversial cases: in the Pangpang massacred by Judge Nery G. Duremdes of the RTC Branch 11 in February 2001; and in the Javier case by Judge Rudy Castrojas of the RTC Branch 12 on October 12, 2004 both in San Jose de Buenavista.

Pacificador and the remaining members of the Javier clan led by Gov. Ezequiel, Evelio’s brother, failed to heal the wound that polarized the province since the Cory administration.

Gov. Javier still apparently harbored bitterness toward the Pacificadors.

The Javiers remain unconvinced of Pacificador’s innocence in Evelio’s murder especially that some of those who remained in jail are Pacificador’s closed allies led by lawyer Bob Javellana.

Even while he was in jail, Pacificador was hell-bent in recapturing his old glory in politics.

He was defeated by Salvacion Perez in the May 2001 gubernatorial contest.

Pacificador tried his luck anew for vice governor in the May 2004 elections but was put away by Rhodora Cadiao.

Remnants of the Pacificador and Javier clans continue to elbow each other in the political arena, and their conflict has even escalated now that loyal upstarts have risen and are determined to follow their footsteps in public service.

DISQUALIFY

Gov. Javier himself has been disqualified by the Commission on Elections after he suspended a municipal mayor in violation of the Omnibus Election Code.

His suspension is under appeal as of press time.

It remains unclear if offspring of both political clans can finally settle the animosity that began more than 40 years ago.

The quarrel has not helped Antique in terms of development.

There are certain parts of the province that need repair, rehabilitation and attention from the national government.

The Javiers have enjoyed the blessings of at least four presidents in the past since Marcos fell: Mrs. Aquino, Fidel V. Ramos. Joseph “Erap” Estrada, and now President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino.

Pacificador will be laid to rest on January 24 in his hometown in Lapaz, Hamtic, Antique.

Let’s hope that the remaining members of both clans can finally forgive each other, let bygones be bygones and work together for the development of Antique.

 
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Posted by on January 22, 2015 in POLITICS

 

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