The good things that the Cayetanos did for the country
WHAT MATTERS MOST - Atty. Josephus B. Jimenez (The Freeman) - October 19, 2020 - 12:00am

In Mark Anthony's speech on the death of his friend, Julius Caesar, he said the evil that men do lives after them. The good is oft interred with their bones. True enough, now that Alan Peter is down, we’re inclined to recall what he did wrong. We should be balanced enough to recollect the good things he did.

While I prefer Lord Alan Velasco, and while we wrote that Cayetano made a lot of errors in judgment, in fairness to him and to the Cayetanos, they have also done a number of things good for the country. We have to be fair in not forgetting the positive sides of the Cayetanos. His father Rene Luna Cayetano, a poor man who struggled his way, studied well, practiced Law in a grand manner, became Senator after handling the prosecution in the infamous Vizconde massacre. Companero Rene became famous because of ABS-CBN's program “Compañero y Compañera” with the Gel Santos Relos. Ironically, Alan Peter became the chief architect of the denial of that network's renewal of franchise.

Rene Cayetano obtained his law degree from UP, his masters and doctorate in Law from Michigan where he met and married his landlady's daughter, Sandra Schramm, a German-American from Ann Arbor, Michigan. Rene founded his own law firm and was later invited by Senator Johnny Enrile and they co-founded PECABAR or Ponce Enrile Cayetano Bautista and Reyes Law firm. He handled high-profile cases, such as the Pepsi Paloma case, the Manila Film Fest scandal, the Louie Beltran case, and the sensational Vizconde rape and massacre.

Pia Cayetano, the eldest child, was an academic performer in UP. She became a lawyer and ran for her father's seat, campaigning as a bike-riding young woman and an advocate for women's rights. She is a mother of three and a solo mom. Next to Pia is Alan Peter. There are two other brothers. Rene is a businessman with no appetite for politics, and Lino, a former movie and TV director who is now doing well as the mayor of Taguig. He gave half of his liver to his late dad for a transplant. The first district representative is Lani, Alan Peter's wife. And the former speaker is representing the second district which covers Pateros, the only remaining municipality in Metro Manila, and hometown of his late dad.

Alan Peter was a graduate of Ateneo, unlike Rene and Pia who finished Law in UP. He was a councilor, then Taguig vice mayor. He was a congressman, then senator from 2007 to 2017. He ran for vice president but lost to Leni Robredo. He was elected congressman in the second district of Taguig then speaker but with a term-sharing agreement this writer calls the Treaty of 1521. Alan Peter is a very dignified, articulate, and brilliant lawyer. He can be very persuasive in his mastery of Law and procedures. He openly fought against GMA and the first gentleman and was critical of President Erap. He also did not like PNoy and was very vocal about many things PNoy did.

It’s claimed that the Cayetanos have transformed Taguig from a former sleepy suburban town of rice paddies, duck farms, and fishing villages. That is partly true. The other side of the truth is that the Fort Bonifacio Global City, thanks to FVR, was transformed by the forces of development, from a talahib Philippine Army Fort McKinley, into a new Manhattan-like city of skyscrapers and world-class establishments, generating billions of revenues for Taguig. In all, the Cayetano political dynasty is better than other political dynasties that only enriched themselves in office for the longest time.

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