Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Feedback from a Chronicle reader

A reader of the Negros Chronicle writes his feelings about Dumaguete City mayor Agustin Perdices:

"Dear Negros Chronicle,
I have read regularly your NC in the internet because this is my way of keeping in touch with the city where I grew up. Thanks to your wordwide exposure. My Tita Meling raised me in San Jose Extension and I spent my elementary in West Central and high school in NOHS. This is the first time I am writing to you and I have to say something because I am not happy with Tuting's harassing a media person. I wanted to keep my personal observation to myself but it's hard to let powerful people threaten the only power that the people have---the right to speak.
I try not to be political because I don't have a lot of respect towards politicians who cannot handle criticisms, more so, avoid criticisms. Mayor Perdices is a case in point. As far as I can remember, he's been the mayor (on and off) of Dumaguete for a long, long time. In all his years in office, I observed that he avoids controversies by using his underlings (such as the Vice Mayor and City Legal Officer) to face public scrutiny and legal actions. For example, when his former Vice Mayor and City legal Officer were sued in relation to the closure of lotto outlets in the city, I wondered ngano sila, dili siya? Asa si Tuting? Why is he not taking the burden as mayor of an issue that he strongly talks about? Looy si Ablong ug si Lagahit. At least, Ablong is lucky that he lost. As far as Atty. Lagahit is concerned, I think he likes to be used over and over again. I don't know much about the new Vice Mayor. I hope he will not allow himself to be used like Ablong.
Now, in his questionable last term, he sued an Australian citizen. For a person who avoids controversies, filing a case against a media person looks foolish. Interestingly, he backed down? Bason napikon lang. Ngano man? Again, it shows that he cannot stomach a criticism. Maybe, it's more than just criticism. Perhaps, there is a truth to the allegation that he really lost the election. That's why he sued. Of course, we can't know it unless the COMELEC investigates the brown-outs, stoppage of vote counting, and the surge of his lead against Umbac after the power was restored and the counting was restarted.
The truth is a lot of Dumaguetenos are already tired of the rise of ciminality, drug problems, unsolved crimes in the city that even Umbac can beat Tuting in an honest election. A former elementary teacher of mine confided to me that actually Umbac won the election but lost the counting. Looy si Umbac apan he deserves to lose by not fighting on. I am not happy with Tuting but I am not happy with Umbac either. Dumaguete has words for it: Wa'y baruganan!.
Tuting is Tuting. Expecting him to change is like expecting a tiger to lose its stripes. He will be known in Dumaguete and the internet world as a mediocre politician in his sunset years with a questionable last term mandate who would rather harass a media person for an unfounded lousy reason rather than dedicate his precious time solving the homicide and murder cases in the city. I am sad to say that as of now, I am hopeless but as long as the media continue to speak and protect our rights to express ourselves, then there might be some hope for us.Go NC for your steadfastness in protecting the right to speak!
H. Albrido"

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