Cebu News

Feeling hurt, betrayed: Councilor quits “minority post”

Jean Marvette A. Demecillo - The Freeman

CEBU, Philippines- While expressing gratitude to Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama, City Councilor Mary Ann de los Santos stepped down from being the minority floor leader of the legislative body. She, however, stopped shy of announcing she was bolting Team Rama.

In her privilege speech, De los Santos said she felt betrayed after she voted on measures that drew the “ire of the present administration”, thus, she is stepping down from her position.

“With profound gratitude and with all humility, I hereby irrevocably resign and relinquish my position as minority floor leader in this August body. I step down from such position in order to give way to other equally qualified, competent and deserving members of the minority,” she said.

“I am thankful to Mayor Mike Rama for inviting me to join his party and sharing our victory in 2013,” De los Santos added.

On August 5, the Bando Osmeña Pundok Kauswagan-dominated City Council voted 10-3 in passing the resolution asking the city’s executive department to defer any action regarding the South Road Properties sale. De los Santos, who was invited to be part of BOPK, was one of the councilors that voted for the passage of the resolution.

From then on, the city’s executive department went vocal in filing a complaint against the councilors who passed the resolution, stressing the “undue injury” that the city got after the resolution.

“Never in my mind, did I think of filing a suit or multiple suits for every ‘no’ vote that came my way, because being able to say ‘no’ is the very essence of a democracy,” De los Santos said.

“I personally saw how such action drew the most adverse reactions and opinions, some even below the belt. I have for all this time felt bullied, clearly I’m not the only one reading newspapers and listening to radio commentators because I have family and friends reacting very strongly to false allegations and personal attack on my character,” she said.

She said she felt “assassinated”. She said she was traumatized with the “hurt, betrayal, abuse, abandonment, and aloneness.”

“I think what bothered me most is that through all these nerve-wracking malicious propaganda is the fact that no one intervened to calm the chaos and not even defend my public position nor my personal hurt,” she said.

City Councilor Gerardo Carillo, who was once affiliated with BOPK, was elected as the new minority leader.

After her privilege speech, De los Santos said she is not closing her doors to anything, including the possibility of going to the other side, BOPK.

When asked if she is still affiliated with Team Rama, she said: “I already relinquish my position as minority floor leader and it is Team Rama who put me there. The mere fact that I relinquish it, that signals something.”

“Basically, there is no point for me to stay there. Number one, I cannot remain my independence in voting measures that is supported by the minority and that would be very hypocrite of me. As you can see, in the past days, I think you’ve read the papers and read in the radio that I am politically massacred. As to who is doing that, you know the culprit. There is practically, there is no more trust there,” she said.

When asked if she is now part with BOPK or the majority bloc, she she will answer in the coming days.

Sought for comment, Rama said voting as the minority floor leader is a City Council matter and not an executive.

“Who voted for her as the minority floor leader? It’s a council matter, not an executive. I do not think that Team Rama gave that position. I overheard, it was being claimed,” she said.

Announcement of candidates

Meanwhile, Rama yesterday announced additional candidates for the 2016 elections.

For the south, the bets of the Partido Panaghiusa sa Panerbisyo-Tungod sa Gugma-Team Rama-United Nationalist are former city councilors Jose Daluz III, Eduardo Rama and Jocelyn Pesquera.

Rama earlier announced Councilors James Cuenco, Nendell Hanz Abella, David Tumulak and Renato “Junjun” Osmeña will run for the south district.

For the north district, Rama said Kamputhaw Barangay Captain Raymond Garcia will be running with his team.

Rama earlier announced that other bets are De los Santos and Noel Wenceslao and former Sambag I barangay captain Jerry Guardo.

Even with the resignation of De los Santos as minority floor leader, Rama said he will not delist her from the partial list.

“I have not delisted her because, as I’ve said, until it’s over, it’s not yet over,” he said. — /BRP (FREEMAN)













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