Seares: Leni's 'you're in a good place' note. BBM plus-minus in Cebu. Not bailable with 2 other bad things in P608.1M charges vs Ahong Chan. Mike Rama's landscape, er, landslide win.

·3 min read

OOPS. CRITIC SLIPS. Occasional lapses in the English language don't make such government leaders as Vice President Leni Robredo or Cebu City Mayor Mike Rama "bobo," or the position they hold or seek. And sometimes, the criticism is on target, at times a misfire.

VP Leni wished movie star Kim Chiu a happy birthday, saying "You're in a good place now." A critic slammed Leni for suggesting Kim has died. The criticism was a dud. The VP's reference was to Kim Chiu being already successful and happy after the controversies and ordeal she had gone through. "In a good place" was correct. Critics confused it with, "You're in a better place now," which consoles on someone's death. .

'HUROT' VICTORY. Interviewed by Rappler, Mayor Michael Rama groped for the term to mean a victory with an overwhelming margin, "Landscape? Kana bang ‘hurot...’" "... Ah, landslide victory," the mayor himself coming up, or was it the interviewer, with the phrase.

When Mike was vice mayor presiding over the Sanggunian, once he confused "tit for tat" (injury or insult given to retaliate for injury or insult received) with "tete a tete" (a private conversation). Mike said he wanted a tit for tat with then mayor Edgardo Labella when he should've said tete-a-tete.

English is a second language. Our leaders -- even if they're lawyers, as Leni and Mike are -- aren't expected to be flawless in it. What the public expects is plain and direct messaging, whatever language the presidential bet or the reelectionist mayor uses.

'PLUNDER NA, GRAFT RAPS PA.' The charges of plunder and corruption against Lapu-Lapu City Mayor Junard "Ahong" Chan, four city councilors, and 10 others involve -- if the published figures are correct -- the aggregate amount of P608,115,030, a lot more than the minimum amount of P150 million total to qualify as plunder under Republic Act 7080 of 1991, as amended. The penalty is life imprisonment and therefore not bailable.

Two other things that are not good for Lapu-Lapu City reelectionist Mayor Ahong Chan, arising from those new graft charges: (1) the shadow of suspicion is hard to remove before election day or years after; (2) if he wins the election, the victory won't shield him and elected colleagues under Aguinaldo doctrine, which is already abolished by the Supreme Court.

PLUSES, MINUSES FOR BBM. The BBM-Sara tandem has the support of One Cebu Party, minus third district leaders led by Representative PJ Garcia who're backing Isko Moreno. The UniTeam is also endorsed by Partido Pilipino sa Pagbabago led by Ace Durano, minus the vice governor, Junjun Davide, who's backing Leni Robredo. Barug in Cebu City endorses Marcos Jr. and Duterte-Carpio, minus affiliated Partido Panaghiusa, the Daluz wing.

Circulating sample ballots and sharing logistics within each party will be no more taxing than usual when interests within the same group compete.

'BOBO' BUT NOT AN 'IDIOT.' “Bobo” is "stupid" in English. Critics call one presidential candidate "bobo," which sounds less insulting than "idiot," "imbecile," or "moron."

"Bobo" means "slow of mind" or "given to unintelligent decisions or acts." In the order of increasing ignorance -- "moron" (IQ of 51-70), "imbecile" (26-50), or "idiot" (0-25) -- where does "bobo" or stupid fit in?

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