Bzzzzz: Still-unvaccinated Guv Gwen won’t force anyone to be vaxxed. Atty. Rex’s link to human rights cause may lessen chance of his murder being solved.

It’s not ‘Vax me if you can’

CEBU Governor Gwen Garcia is not vaccinated yet. But she will be soon, she announced Friday, August 27, once the vaccine that won’t cause severe allergic reactions will arrive. She didn’t name the vaccine or when she’ll be vaxxed. The suspense must be killing her critics.

The governor has not been exactly promoting vaccination, never talked about securing vaccines with Capitol fund, and has not promoted vaccination as deterrent to Covid-19 infection, at least not as widely and noisily as Cebu City officials -- such as Vice Mayor Mike Rama and Mayor Edgardo Labella, in the order of decibel -- have been doing. Instead, Guv Gwen has focused on reviving the economy and giving local application to, and “improving,” Inter-Agency Task Force guidelines.

She’s not vaccine-shy, it seems, not a case of “Vax me if you can.” She’s just being careful about her allergies. Her adviser on vaccines, Dr. Mary Jean Loreche, DOH chief pathologist who’s also a “pro-bono” consultant to Capitol on health matters, must have told the governor that severe allergic reactions are “very rare but can happen.” It’s called anaphylaxis: for easy recall, remember Ana and Fe who were lax back in college.

Anti-Duterte posts

The murder of Atty. Rex Fernandez tells the public things other than (a) his long full name, which is Rex “Etot” Jesus Mario Fernandez and (b) that he just ended a hunger strike against policies of the condo where he lived.

Topping the information about Atty. Rex, following the shooting to death of the lawyer inside his car last Thursday, August 26 in Banawa, Guadalupe, Cebu City -- must be this:

A human rights lawyer, he defended the “Cebu 8, ” who included his nephew, who were arrested by police for protesting against the Anti-Terror Law at the University of the Philippines-Cebu. A former staunch supporter of President Duterte, he had been posting on social media heated remarks on Duterte’s governance.

Sample line from last Monday, August 23: “Ang maayo unta nimong kabilin, hugaw pa sa (hugaw) sa baboy.”

Why is that info about Atty. Rex relevant to people’s speculation about the case? They say the chances of the police solving the case are smaller if the victim is a human rights advocate or an illegal-drug suspect. The anti-Duterte public digs might not help. Does the police track record in Cebu support that theory?

‘Sitting duck... with boots on’

If the shooting to death of lawyer Rex Fernandez were not a tragic and deplorable incident, people would’ve pointed out the irony, if not humor, in some circumstances of the killing and the reactions:

[1] He was shot just after ended his hunger strike, on advice of his doctor. Calling off the ritual of protest, which risked his life, meant he wanted to live. The killers frustrated that wish. A broadcaster, who didn’t know Atty. Fernandez had already given up his protest, asked, “Unya ang iyang hunger strike? Di na madayon?”

[2] Edre Olalia, president of National Union of People’s Lawyers (NUPL), said with the rash of killings in the country, Atty. Rex “died with his boots on” and “every lawyer is a sitting duck.” Not a pleasant image of Atty. Rex or any other lawyer victim: a boot-shod duck sitting on his ass.

Tic Tac GuarDo

The Commission on Elections (Comelec) may finally get around to adopting limits on campaigning such gimmicks as what Cebu City Councilor Jerry Guardo has been doing for the past several weeks: a Tic Tac Toe Dance contest, with finalists in chosen barangays and cash prizes plus exposure on his Facebook page. With, of course, the exposure of Jerry Guardo as host.

Early campaigning? Sure is, but doesn’t violate any Comelec regulation or the law.

He is not yet a candidate, not till the filing of certificate of candidacy (COC) in October. And he doesn’t mention his name running for any position. If that won’t fall under the ban during the campaign period, think of the variations on the gimmick that will come.

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