The Makati caper imbroglio goes on
THE SOUTHERN BEAT  - Rolly Espina () - December 4, 2007 - 12:00am

The uproar over the Thursday Makati incident continues with a lot of outcry against that caper by Sen. Antonio Trillanes, et al.

In Western Visayas and Oriental Negros, the collective opinion was against that adventurism. Even the schoolchildren of the Andres Bonifacio Elementary School in Bacolod City presented a drama that harped on the need to focus on true revolution.

That, more or less, pictured perfectly how even the young considered last week’s incident as deplorable and not true to form. That was not the kind of revolution that we want to happen and neither was it the kind Andres Bonifacio had dreamed of during his time, pointed out Vice Mayor Jude Thaddeus Sayson, the guest speaker.

Two Catholic bishops criticized Infanta Quezon Bishop Emeritus Julio Labayen for his involvement in the dramatic hype of their walkout from the Makati RTC court by Trillanes and Brig. Gen. Danilo Lim last week.

The two prelates were Lipa Bishop Ramon Arguelles and Butuan Bishop Juan de Dios Pueblos.

But Bacolod Bishop Vicente Navarra pointed out that the Thursday caper was just a tip of the iceberg.

“God is warning the Philippines,” stressed the Bacolod prelate.

For me, more than a destabilization act, it was a frightening prick to the conscience of these people in government, in the church, and in the private sector of our society, why, because dishonesty, hypocrisy and greed, have been contributing to the miserable plight of the country,” Bishop Navarra pointed out.

“I am afraid that ills and havocs graver than that provoked by Trillanes are to come upon our nation, because God always allows painful and dreadful purifications to fall upon wicked rulers and subjects alike, if only to jolt them from their wrongdoings,” was the message from the Bacolod bishop.

Overall, however, there was a continuing denunciation of the futile and ill-planned charade that led to the destruction of parts of the Manila Peninsula Hotel in Makati City.

Earlier, the League of City Mayors of the Philippines, led by Iloilo City Mayor Jerry Treñas blasted the ill-conceived action by Trillanes and company.

So did local executives of Negros Occidental and several of the province’s congressmen.

In Dumaguete City, Bais City Mayor Hector Villanueva said the League of City Mayors supports President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo who was asked by Magdalo soldiers under Gen. Lim and Sen. Trillanes to resign. The group included also civilians, particularly former Vice President Teofisto Guingona.

“There are better ways to solve the problem, not by an uprising which will only affect the economy of the country,” Villanueva declared.

The Negros Media Council for Press Freedom also condemned particularly the arrest of mediamen who were covering the Peninsula incident. They particularly singled out the handcuffing of crew members of the ABS-CBN camera team who were hauled off to Camp Bagong Diwa for processing.

Edgar Cadagat, one of the trustees of the group, said he had not expected the police to violate the role of mediamen who were only out to cover an event.

Former Negros Press Club president Primo Esleyer pointed out that the mediamen out there were only performing their professional mission and not obstructing the police.

Local mediamen, however, were quick to add that they had never experienced the same disregard for their co-workers in the past. Nor do they expect the same in the future.

Still, they decided to set up a committee made up of the undersigned as chairman, Cadagat as co-chair, and Esleyer as member with the members of the Press Freedom Council to hold a dialogue with local police authorities to come up with rules and guidelines on how to handle coverages of similar events in the future.

But the most touching, however, was the reenactment of the life of Bonifacio played by teachers and students of the ABES. It was directed by Alma Borhon and researched by Leny Lidres.

It was preceded by the Katipunan flag raising rites of the Philippine flag. This was followed by the wreath-laying spearheaded by Vice Mayor Sayson, with Councilors Celia Flor, Wilson Gamboa Jr. and Catalino Alisbo.

But, as pointed out by Sayson, the message was simple – “the true revolution that we should focus on is the battle against poverty and to uplift the lives of people.”

This celebration, he added, is for the youth, to remind us that we have a responsibility to give them a better life in the future,” Sayson stressed.

But for Negros Occidental Governor Joseph Marañon, by ending the standoff in Makati immediately, it showed decisiveness in enforcing the law and that is good for business.

“It assured the business community that the government is on top of the situation.

Incidentally, one of those arrested in the Makati caper is Capt. Gary Alejano, a native of Sipalay City, of the province of Negros Occidental.

ADDENDUM. Lyn Diaz, a Sangguniang Kabataan Barangay leader of Escalante City, denied yesterday that she had been kidnapped. An SK member of Barangay Libertad, she told DYEZ Aksyon Radio that she is a diehard supporter of Irene Maguilimotan, running for president of the Escalante SK Federation, and hid in the house of a friend because she did not want to support the candidate of Escalante Mayor Manuel Yap.

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