Bzzzzz: Mike Rama woos, warns 9,000+ City Hall employees. A mix of pep talk on service and whom to vote for in 2022... 'Good, better, best' for governor

·3 min read

Pacquiao's Cebu bet

THE announcement that former Pinamungahan, Cebu mayor Geraldine Yap will run for governor drew comment Monday, November 15, from incumbent Governor Gwen Garcia.

Answering a question about presidential candidate Manny Pacquiao's disclosure last Sunday that Yapha would filed her COC the following day, Guv Gwen said: Well, there's good, better and best. And she's "the best," putting two hands on her shoulders.

The "best" claim apparently arises from the recognition of Cebu being the best province (for one, the richest in the country), which the Capitol-run Sugbo News has not failed to trumpet.

On Pacquiao not having met with Gwen, the governor said Pacquiao cancelled a Capitol appointment for a meeting with "another candidate for governor." But she's open to another appointment provided their individual schedules would allow it. Which means not likely. Pacquiao must have guessed he'd have little chance of being endorsed by One Cebu.

Yapha is expected to replace one Martin Mari Lozada of Abag-Promdi who filed a COC for governor.

Deadline for substitutions is November 15 at 5 p.m.

WHO IS GAY YAPHA? The former mayor of the second-class town Pinamungahan is a medical doctor like her dad, ex-congressman Antonio Yapha and ex-vice vice mayor of Toledo City.

In 2019, she ran for congresswoman of Cebu's third district and, along with veteran ex-senator and ex-city mayor Sonny Osmeña, lost to Representative Pablo John Garcia. (She got 17.41 percent of the vote, as against PJ Garcia's 51.68 percent and Sonny's 30.90 percent.) In that campaign, two interesting stories about Gay Yapha: (a) she complained of a death threat, which Sonny decried as fake news; and (b) her party NPC ditched her for independent bet Sonny, yet she still supported the Agnes Magpale-Junjun Davide tandem (with Agnes losing to Gwen Garcia but Davide beating his less-known rival).

Guv Gwen didn't say who'd fall under "good" and "better." The other contender for the top Capitol seat is ex-tourism secretary Ace Durano.

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Carrot (bonus); stick (non-renewal)

At the Cebu City Hall flag-raising ceremony Monday, November 15, Acting Mayor Mike Rama used humor and seriousness and carrot and stick to woo and threaten more than 9,000 employees most of whom are registered voters for the next election in 2022.

The attraction or lure was explicit: bonus before yearend. Vaccination by all the workers has been the condition for the grant. Last Monday, there was another condition, not categorical and express but just thinly veiled.

A.M. Rama drilled into the memory of the employees the names of the Partido Barug candidates, give them initials for memory recall, for example: as AMGLWLPG (Alcover, Mancao, Garganera, Labella, Wenceslao, Legaspi, Pino, Guardo) for the north district. When some employees got an answer wrong -- in Rama's classroom style of interaction with the audience - saying "Pesquera" for letter G in PEHECGZO (name them if you can) for the south district, Mike exploded, "Unsay Pesquera sa imong mata: G for Gealon."

WHO'LL SIGN RENEWAL? The acting mayor said, "Way ipuno (to the list of persons voted for). Kay mopuno gani, you'll be accountable to me." With this kind of warning: "Remember, January is Judgment Day (for you)." "Kinsay mopirma sa inyong renewal?" To the crowd's shout of "Mike Rama," he retorted, "Who else?" If some wise guy said, "Si Margot kon di ka modaug," it must have been whispered and not heard by anyone else.

To be sure, it wasn't all warning. A.M. Rama appealed to the employees and the Barug officials, tapping their supposedly being "kapamilya, kapuso, kapatid, kauban" -- "manag-kauban, managkuyog."

"Politics will pass/friendship will last." He said their term will only be up to June 30 but (if they support the administration)," they can go beyond, "hangtod sa ganghaan sa himaya, amen."

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