Bzzzzz: Tomas gets Covid and people ask about Margot. Everyone else in Osmeña household found not infected. BOPK does own civic help, 'ayuda.' Baby X baptism draws political bigwigs.

·3 min read

MARGOT'S SAFE. When former Cebu City mayor Tomas Osmeña announced Sunday, January 16, on Facebook he had Covid-19, he didn't mention his wife, Margarita "Margot" Osmeña, BOPK's candidate challenging incumbent Mayor Michael Rama. Tomas, who dropped out of the south congressional race, is a non-candidate this time. His wife is the one running.

He's still a public figure though and he's the general leading the BOPK army in this May's battle. The major story is about his infection, along with the news that Margot is spared. Public interest inevitably leads to curiosity about Margot: How would it affect her campaign?

The other members of the Osmeña household were found to be not infected, Tomas posted on Facebook. The family won't be accepting visitors. He is being isolated in a separate room and has alerted the people whom he had contact with in the past few days.


BOPK'S ASSISTANCE. Little was known about BOPK helping pandemic and Typhoon Odette victims. The incumbent officials, belonging to the ruling party Barug, are the persons whom the public sees in announcements and media reports. After all, the administration controls the resources: cash, water, rice and other foodstuffs.

The people who themselves didn't receive, and thus didn't know about, BOPK's "ayuda" learned about it only in bits of information, such as Tomas coming up with a tanker with customized faucets that can distribute gallons of water at the same time and providing two chainsaw teams to cut branches of trees obstructing the roads.

Apparently, the former mayor tapped his businessmen friends and party-mates, like Councilor Nestor Archival Sr., who had water tankers, water, and other things to help the typhoon victims. In the name of charity and humanitarian cause? That, and to compete with Barug on the assistance activity, which is a favorite vote-getter these days.

PLEA FOR WATER. A bit of trivia that reached City Hall, courtesy of Tomas's FB, was that a person complaining there was no water at the city's quarantine center to use for bathing got his wish fulfilled by a tanker of water sent by Osmeña. A resident of Tabunan appealed to Tomas instead of City Hall for clearing of debris on the streets.

Compared with the Barug administration's actual garbage hall and food-and-water aid though (2,000 tons of typhoon debris collected as of January 3 and a billion pesos released for Odette response), the BOPK effort appears puny. But it's not leaving the show entirely to Barug.


'BABY X.' A short feature of four photos and a caption was run in CDN Digital following the Saturday, January 15, baptism of the son of Representative Franco "Duke" Frasco and Liloan, Cebu Mayor Christine Garcia-Frasco. Earlier, the Cebu City mayor's News & Information FB site posted photos taken during the baptism at San Pedro Calungsod Shrine and the reception at Waterfront Hotel. The event drew the big guns in Cebu politics plus the national heavyweights Bongbong Marcos and Sara Duterte-Carpio.

Noticeably, the City Hall identified the baby by full name while CDN called him "Baby X."

CDN did it on its own or was requested by the family, but protecting the child is a mandate without penal sanction on journalists worldwide.

The six principles issued by Unicef or United National Children's Emergency Fund include these: in reporting about children, special attention shall be paid "to each child's right to privacy and confidentiality" and media shall not publish a story or image of the child that "might put him, his siblings or peers at risk, even when their identities are changed, obscured or not used."


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