Cebu Governor Gwendolyn Garcia in showdown with Aquino government

What is happening in Cebu? Apparently there is some sort of a lockdown going on complete with riot police and wire barricades in front of the governor’s office. Cebu governor Gwendolyn Garcia has locked herself in her office and been there for a few days now in defiance of the suspension order served to her by the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) on the 18th of December. This was reportedly as a result of being found guilty of grave abuse of authority in connection with administrative charges filed against her by the late Cebu Vice Governor Greg Sanchez Jr. in 2010.

gwendolyn_garciaUnfortunately, Cebu City is so far away from the capital Manila that most Filipinos don’t even give a hoot about the governor’s plight and that of the city itself. The crisis might as well be happening in Mars for all they care. Speaking of Mars, those who do care about what’s going on are saying that it was DILG Secretary Manuel “Mar” Roxas who was instrumental in the suspension of Garcia. The terms “power-grabbing”, “manipulative” and “dictator” are being thrown around to describe Mar and his boss, President Benigno Simeon “BS” Aquino following their decision to suspend Garcia. Some are saying this because the decision to suspend Garcia is quite suspect as with most decisions that comes out of Malacañang nowadays.

As far as Garcia and her supporters know her suspension is “illegal because it violated the Local Government Code, providing that the Office of the President must decide within 30 days after an investigation of the case.” She said that given the rules of prescription, the case has already been dropped. To quote the embattled governor:

“The investigation was terminated on August 31, 2011 so 30 days after that, on September 31, 2011, we should have had a decision. The decision came out on December 17, 2012. That’s 474 days,” Garcia said.”

The timing of the serving of the suspension order is also questionable. Everyone knows that December is the festive season particularly in the Philippines where most people live for hard partying at this time of the year. It seems as though the Liberal Party is trying to take advantage of the jolly season when most people are distracted by the Christmas Carols and horrendous traffic. They could be trying to pull a fast one. They probably thought that since most Filipinos are having a merry good time eating and drinking themselves silly, hardly anyone who matters to them will notice what some say is a “power-grab” by the Liberal Party (to which the incumbent President and DILG secretary belong) from the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA), a party which has a strong following in the province of Cebu.

One just has to ask, is BS Aquino’s party trying to beat a deadline? Are they trying to tick a list of people to get rid off by the end of the year? It does look like it especially since the 2013 senatorial election is just a few months away. You have to admire the Liberal Party’s tenacity. They plan their move meticulously in advance. It’s like the stars aligning so that “fate” will be on their side once again just like in 2010 when the reluctant Senator won the Presidential Election using sympathy votes. Unfortunately for the Liberal Party, their latest move has irked some people even members of the Cojuangco clan.

It’s been reported that President BS Aquino’s aunt, Margarita “Tingting” Cojuangco, has thrown her support for Cebu Gov. Garcia. She even went as far as saying that “It’s very obvious that what they did was for the Liberal Party.” You have to wonder again why a relative of the President would say something to undermine him like that. And why would she rather be a member of the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) instead of the Liberal Party? Shouldn’t she be supporting her nephew’s party consistent with the spirit of dynasty?

The Filipino people will never know the answer to those questions but the more important question to ask is: Why are there different political parties in the first place? As if one party is so different from the other. They are all the same anyway! They don’t make a difference to the plight of the Filipino people. Members of these political parties seem to be just after their own interests not the country’s interests. Kung baga, kampi-kampihan lang yan! Loosely translated, the parties just stand for George Bush, Jr’s famous mantra: “If you are not with us, you are against us”.

Sadly, most Filipinos only care about the personalities behind the political parties. They don’t care about political platforms. So if the people don’t care, why should the politicians bother to come up with a platform, right? With an apathetic electorate, Philippine politicians don’t really have to but what they do need to come up with are election-winning strategies. Bad mouthing and vilifying their political enemies is guaranteed to work all the time.

In another turn of events, aging but not fading political allies led by no less than the Vice President himself, Jejomar Binay, former President and convicted plunderer Joseph “Erap” Estrada and Senate President and alleged Martial Law architect, Juan Ponce Enrile flew to Cebu on a chartered plane two days before Christmas to be by the side of the governor Garcia. Binay is reported to be feeling a sense of déjà vu and is “alarmed that the same political tactics that were used against him by former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo in 2007 are now being employed against Garcia.”

The Vice President was also suspended by the DILG in 2006 and 2007 for allegations that he placed ghost employees when he was still Makati Mayor during former President Gloria Arroyo’s term.

The high drama in Cebu could come to an end soon though since Malacañang has used their ultimate weapon – the “survey”. Following an online survey conducted by the Cebu Daily News — said to be an affiliate of the Philippine Daily Inquirer — showing that most respondents support the government’s move to suspend Garcia, Presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda has boldly called on Governor Garcia to follow the “rule of law” because that’s what he thinks the people want anyway. Under the circumstances, the rule of law has become, it seems, the BS Aquino law. Does Garcia have any choice? None really. Not unless these stupid surveys that always work on the gullible crowd get outlawed.

[Photo courtesy EverythingCebu.com.]

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86 Comments on “Cebu Governor Gwendolyn Garcia in showdown with Aquino government”

    1. She could do that but she probably wanted to make a bold statement. And what better way to do that than to keep herself held up in her office, right? 😉

      1. Maybe she can appeal to the people of Cebu by doing some charity or any good deed outside of the office. That’s something to say about the “surveys”. It’s Christmas time anyway, so why not join in the spirit of giving?

        1. the survey’s are owned by our country’s beloved oligarchs, controllado na kasi lahat ng Conjuanco-Aquino.. Lalo na si Noynoy na ang Presidente..

  1. It seems that this latest move of malacanang will backfire on them. It is beginning to unmask their dictatorial tendencies. Malacanang has already managed to royally piss off the catholic church with the RH bill. I don’t think that this will end well for malacanang.

    1. I am pro-RH Bill pero tama ka, mali ang ginagawa ng Malacañang..

      RH Bill, Sin Tax Bill, Impeachment of Judge Renato Corona, etc..

      Tsk tsk tsk

    2. Pray that it doesn’t end well for those who don’t deserve it. But if this nation should burn due to the mistakes of the idiot who is the head of our nation then hopefully some will finally learn their lessons.

  2. It makes me feel like nothing as changed in 115 years. Faction vs. faction, family vs. family, the rule of law and the people be damned. Then the Catholic Church sticks it’s nose right into the middle of the whole thing.
    I think the question about all the political parties is addressed in the Constitution. All you have to do is convince Comelec that you represent some “underrepresented group” and BAM you’re in. Stupid, stupid, stupid.

    1. “It makes me feel like nothing as changed in 115 years.”

      You don’t say?

      “Faction vs. faction, family vs. family, the rule of law and the people be damned.”

      Nevertheless, I pin my hopes on the few “things” which might change the course of this catastrophe. I am hopeful for some “positive change”(no matter how, where, when etc.) to come. Besides it will make us carry on much better than being a complete pessimist. As for the IDIOTS who dragged this country to the mud,(those qualified to be called one) I just hope for some justice and I also “bless” in hopes that they might get their mind and heart straight.

  3. Have I missed something? Garcia does not seem to be saying that she is innocent; she is merely saying that the central government have not followed the prescribed procedures.

    1. I think U have a BIG point here Mr Andrew
      Many Garcia in the Office are involve in BIG scam ( Remember the hello garci & and the army general?) If she think she is innocent…Then Prove IT!

        1. One of the problems here, Ilda, is that stupid remark by yet another stupid person you had to reply to.

          It is the prosecution’s job to prove guilt, not for the defence to prove innocence because the rule of law starts with the presumption of innocence.

          Further to the other idiot in this thread, Garcia is quite within her rights to point out that the rule of law has not been followed because of the 30 day rule.

          Seriously, so many people here are too stupid to offer public opinions. Learn before you post!

        2. @Matthew Parkes

          LOL…I thought I was the only one who noticed. Some people do not bother to think before posting their comment on a public forum. 😉

      1. Hello Garci and army general? Jaime, which planet have u come from? or u simply barking on a wrong tree, u must do your research first before posting..u kidding me!

      2. sorry Jaime, you totally missed Andrew’s point…you only thought you did but, actually, you didn’t lol. and what has gwen garcia got to do with the hello garci case? or with general garcia’s case? for a moment, you got me confused…but not really lol.

      3. @ Alex granada
        That poster’s logic is what we refer here as “insane malacanang troll logic”. They always try to connect current issues with the past administration without providing any proof, just hot air.

  4. Thank you for this news. I can read, write and speak English but there are a lot of our countrymen that has limited vocabulary with the said language.

    I do appreciate this pero gusto ko din itong mabasa ng lahat ng Pilipino.

    Maraming salamat pong muli.

    1. I’m more worried about those who can read and understand English but still have screwed up reasoning. There are a lot of those in the Philippines. 😉

      1. And those people who can read and understand English but still have screwed up reasoning have a lot more influence.

  5. Ilda,

    They’ve been trying to invoke Jesse Robredo’s name into the whole thing. And the number of days that elapsed from the time of transmittal of records seemingly points to government’s inefficiency in follow-ups of cases.

    So, where has PNoy’s promises of a more efficient government gone to?

    And, has anyone noticed that PNoy has been seeing red every December since his presidency started?

    2010:
    His beloved Truth Commission got shot down due to unconstitutionality
    2011:
    Noynoy lambasts former CJ Corona and fast tracks his impeachment
    Noynoy’s government screws up the response to Sendong big time
    2012:
    Noynoy’s government screws up the response to Pablo big time (mmm, there’s a pattern here)
    Noynoy “strong-arms” the RH bill passing (allegedly, of course), and now this case with Garcia in Cebu and Espino in Pangasinan

    1. Hi FallenAngel

      It seems as though they are in a rush to finish off the year with a bang. In their haste, they make a lot of unnecessary mistakes. This was the case when they filed the hastily and badly written impeachment charges against Corona. The bahala na attitude is in play as usual.

        1. I dont think that this incident will go without anything bad happening to aquino. This incident could start growing opposition against the yellow menace. Aquino has consistenly made very bad choices. Pretty soon, it will all come back to bite aquino in the ass.

        2. If you are referring to the Aquino gov’t.,R u sure? They got rid of Corona and it seems that ‘BS’ is going to save the ranch,so he seems to doing OK for himself and his family,no? If they screw up a public works project,it is not by accident.All moves the gov’t. makes are well planned and made to look a certain way.and tough stuff for anyone who doesn’t like it,u kno?
          In the grand scheme of things it would be a lucky guess to say that everything is going according to plan? and btw,whatever happened to GMA? She never did go to jail,huh?No.She did not even get put on trial,huh? Of the money allegedly stolen,has it been returned? A pattern of BIG headlines followed by not much of anything and then move-on to the next BIG headline is what the PHILIPPINE ‘democracy’ is all about. One big elaborate scam.

  6. Recent incidents are a sad indictment upon malacanan and a reflection that nothing changes. In fact corruption and illegal activities have increased in the past 3 years, and the selective villification of a few political opponents is pure propaganda. No wonder they keep killing FoI bill.

    Financial greed, power lust, and self interest remain the political motives and occupy the time of these 3rd rate individuals/trapos.

    2013 – let the games begin.

    Malacanan cancelled the nativity play. They couldn’t find 3 wise men.

    And whilst p-noy spends his time playing with josh, maybe he should think about compostela valley where the government response has been a disgrace. The government has relied on red cross and oxfam to achieve something.

    1. @Libertas

      It’s probably a diversion. They need to distract the Filipino people from the 1500 (and counting) deaths and hundreds of thousands diplaced by typhoon Pablo in Mindanao.

      1. true. matuwid na daan but how come Noynoy increased taxes? dba dpat lower na nga dahil marami na sya mahahabol na corrupt at tsaka mga tax evaders? idiot.

    2. The FoI bill,as stated by Gov.Romualdo of Camiguin Island,can not be passed as it would open up, and leave vulnerable to EXTORTION, the people sitting in Congress(passed and present!).
      It is un-believable to hear a Governor state publicly that if the books of the country were opened for all to see that those responsible for the legislation passed with-in its chambers would be open to EXTORTION from people who would want to blab to anyone who will listen what is found out in that legislation.
      It is an OUTRAGE that what is going on is being covered up at all expenses lest the fox be caught in the hen-house!

  7. What’s really disturbing about the whole thing is that the acting governor is cutting off Gov. Gwen’s access to the media. A media blackout maybe justified in cases like a hostage crises or the one in Basilan a few years back since they involve national and public security, but denying media access to someone because of a simple suspension case against a governor is overkill to say the least. Only reason of said media cutoff is either the Yellowist have something to hide or they don’t want the public (who by the way has the right to know about both sides of the issue) to hear the Gov. Gwen side.

    “Sniff” “sniff” I smell a rat that stinks of dictatorship…..

    1. @Lord Chimera

      It’s like Martial Law in Cebu at the moment. What’s more disturbing is that most people in Cebu seem to be taking all this sitting down. They should be up in arms by now. Sigh…it’s the festive season. They can’t even pass up the annual celebrations for something important.

      1. let me tell you something. most people in cebu wanted gwen to follow the order. and well, they are on the side of pnoy on this one. also it’s enjoyable to see that woman holing herself in the capitol.

        1. it may well be 2 wrongs…making a fool of philippine politics/politicians.
          lose-lose.

          aboit time that binay showed some courage/leadership if he thinks he is up to being president.

          busying himself with ofw’s and minor celebrities is not the mark of a leader. time to stop hiding.

        2. @claire

          “most people in cebu wanted gwen to follow the order. and well, they are on the side of pnoy on this one”

          Oh, really? I was following the news on the administration’s dictatorial power grab to remove Governor Gwen Garcia. There was no mention at all about your myopic statement. In truth and in fact most of the news and commentaries backfired against the yellow administration. All I read about was the usual black propaganda from Valte and malacanang. You like to toe the black propaganda line of the silly dictator. Silly you!

  8. It should not always be what is the motive behind the action, but has Garcia done what she is accused of doing?
    It is certainly sad that the fact that ALL the politicians in the entire country are crooks/thieves/and bald-faced lying weasels and that none of them ever gives the money they are caught stealing back or spend time in jail, so the point of all this is exactly what? Is it surprising that no one has the balls to actually say that they have had enough of the crooks that run the country and actually do something RASH about it? The never-ending bull-shit stories are so predictable that listening to them is not even necessary, the outcome is always the same.
    The generalities referred to in this article are only generalities and may or may not be true, kind of like a horoscope.

  9. That is so funny!!

    So PersiNoynoy has unleashed THE ULTIMATE WEAPON — the survey!!!!

    PersiNoynoy told the survey-ors what he knows to be the truth… and wahhh-lahhhh!!! that’s what the survey found out to be what the people the survey asked said is believably true!

    Wahhh-lasss-tikk!!!

    Next time… Malakanyang will get THE SURVEY to ask about PersiNoy-2016 and Noyy-ii-Noy One-More-Term!!!

  10. “Sadly, most Filipinos only care about the personalities behind the political parties” exactly, Filipinos dont mind and dont care about what the hell are your flatforms for, as long as you can make them laugh, giggle and dance with your campaign jingles and as long as you can provide them celebrities during and after the election/fiesta. and not to forget groceries amounting of P100-200 pesos every fiesta and yuletide season. thats all that matter and they knew that. Very obvious; noynoy won the election in 2010…

  11. On cue, government propaganda has been stepped up to pass all the blame on Governor Gwen Garcia. Never mind if the executive branch acts like a silly banana republic dictator. Abuse of discretion, denial of procedural and substantive due process, unlawful taking of tents by the PNP tantamount to robbery and arbitrary censorship in closure of media outlets(TV cable station and newspaper)by the “acting” governor shows a continuing palace conspiracy to stifle basic rights guaranteed and protected by the Philippine Constitution. It is also very apparent that the subtle dictatorship is becoming bolder in its quest to totally control/stifle institutions, people, events and rights. Wake up people! Speak out against the creeping dictatorship now! We are not sheeple! We are a formidable force of people! Express your grievances in mass peaceable assembly! Stick it to the man thing.

  12. The Governor of Cebu is in a tight spot, let justice rule not hole up in the office which no longer has the power to even buy a toilet paper using govt funds, it is useless to stay in the capitol it is like imprisoning herself there when it is not necessary. If I were her, i would just file the necessary TRO and wait for it in a more dignified manner. Her boldness to stay in office will not merit any positivism, if the TRO comes then she can assume office in a more legal manner.

    1. @Rene S Lazo

      If you have been reading the news, you should know that there is already a petition with TRO filed in the CA. Governor Garcia’s “boldness to stay in office” is justified. It is a righteous cause. She is fighting the good fight against a subtle dictatorship that believes in black propaganda, abuse of discretion, denial of procedural and substantive due process and even censorship of Cebu cable television and newspaper media outlets. Please explain to GRP why the PNP confiscated without court order or due process tents in the provincial capitol. The members of the PNP committed robbery. You are obviously on the side of the yellow administration.

  13. The visit of the three kings in politics, did not re-install her in office, it is just for media mileage, the Governor, should just step down, the six months in office she wants to assume will not be much, the Cebuanos are not easily swayed to believe accusations,she will win in the congressional election,better prepare for it and defeat her opponent overwhelmingly to get even with her perceived notion that she is being politically persecuted by President Aquino. So, if she wants to get even then step out of her prison office and campaign against the candidate of the Liberal party. To me it is more politically correct to do so than fight a loosing battle in her prison office in the Capitol.

    1. @Rene S Lazo

      The visit of three political luminaries was made as a show of strong political support for Governor Garcia. It is not only for media mileage as you stated. The dirty, dark politics of malacanang was exposed and given due notice. You mention “prison office” twice. Thank you for validating the fact that she is already declared guilty by the dark powers that be without due process, trial and the rule of law. The executive branch implements and enforces the law. It is the Judiciary that interprets the law and not your yellow president. BS Aquino is not a judge, jury and executioner. To say otherwise, that he has absolute power to suspend with abuse of discretion and absence of due process, validates his creeping dictatorship in totally controlling institutions, people and events contrary to the rule of law. Ours is a rule of law and not of men. You are an obvious follower of the man who would be king.

  14. “Members of these political parties seem to be just after their own interests not the country’s interests.”

    LOL, so true. Unlike in US where the political parties has clear agenda and stand on different issues, in the Philippines politicians will join which ever is the dominant party. I bet most Phil. politicians can’t differentiate the ideological differences of among political parties in the country!

  15. The presence of M-16 armed Philippine National Police elements at the Cebu Provincial Capitol validates the fact that the subtle creeping dictatorship is getting bolder in trying hard to control the Cebuano people, its institutions and unfolding events. Censorship applied on cable channel TV and newspaper media outlets is intended to muzzle the truth in free speech, press and expression. The Cebuano people have the right to peaceably assemble in defending their elected Governor Gwen Garcia from the dark political power grab of the creeping dictatorship from Imperial Manila. That they are being prevented entry into the capitol shows an attempt to muzzle guaranteed rights of peaceful assembly and travel. That the police confiscated tents and chairs also shows clear criminal intent to commit robbery. It also shows that the PNP elements are politically motivated as they violate their own oaths as police officers. The motto of the police is “To Serve and Protect the People” They are not there in Cebu to serve and protect the dictator. The people of Cebu should be vigilant of their rights. Their peaceful people power can defeat the darkness of the creeping dictatorship. If they are prevented entry, then they should surround the capitol and the police and peacefully show the power of the people. As for the PNP elements, let them be aware that should they start violence against the people, they will not only be liable administratively and criminally. They will be forever condemned as instruments of a political dictatorship.

  16. @Freddy Most people I feel are not worried about corruption because I feel they don’t recognize it, I go to the grocery store I have to pay the spotter, I get out of my car and have to pay for toilet facilities, tip the boxer and the cart man the guy trying to sell me flowers, rags the kids that sell me mini eggs won’t leave me alone even after telling them politely I don’t need that, it’s not such a cheap place to live as a foreigner and my funds are limited and no work, nobody will ever understand, you get dogged everywhere you go even in your own neighborhood sharing is encouraged, I bought a large sack of individual packaged chips on the road and the guys drinking across from me go “You give me chips” I tried to ignore them but they kept bugging me, I told them no chips for you and they said that’s not good and yet I don’t harass them when they buy for their families it’s a culture problem and I thought it was at the top but it starts rock bottom for me. With all that said, go politicians, government workers take what you want because everybody else does.

    1. Yo mcalleyboy,you have a point there!!! If I were a Filipino I would steal everything that is not nailed down,and even some of that too…if I could!!! Whether it is through corruption or outright robbery,I WOULD DO IT!!! Yes Sir,put me in one of those flimsy-ass non-secured jails and I would break-out,no doubt!OR just become a politician,and steal legally,HA!!!!!
      It is happening in every government in the world,it is just in the fils. it is easier as it appears accepted,from the bottom up or top-down..same same!

  17. Breaking news from the headlines of the Philippine Star(12/27/2012):

    “Cebu gov’s son files robbery raps vs Mar, cops by Mylen Manto”

    “The son of suspended Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia filed a robbery complaint yesterday against Department of the Interior and Local Government(DILG)Secretary Manuel Roxas II and police officials. Pablo Garcia III said in his three-page complaint that despite demands, Roxas and the police have refused to return three tents each measuring six meters by 12 meters. The tents were used for a vigil at the capitol in support of the suspended governor. Police broke up the vigil and confiscated the tents. Garcia said the provincial capitol does not own the tents.”

    Just an excerpt but it shows how the creeping dictatorship treats its perceived enemies. It seems the motto of the police in Cebu is no longer “To Protect and Serve the People.” It is now to protect and serve the dictator.

  18. Hmm, I wonder what Vicenzo will be saying about this? That what AbNoy is doing is right ‘cuz he’s taking out corrupt people? 😛

    1. I bet he’s bitching and moaning right now since he can’t post any of his propaganda here without being counter trolled. He doesn’t have any capacity to even post something worth reading. 🙂

    2. It’ll probably something like this:
      “Iyan ang nararapat kay Garcia dahil corrupt sya. Mahusay talaga itong si pnoy sa pagsugpo ng korapsyon. Talagang nililigtas nya tayo para sa progreso’t asenso.”
      I suck on imitating him but hey he/she always delusively and monotonously writes like an incompetent elementary kid.

      1. Yep, vincenzo is incompetent like the one that he is so desperate to protect. Aquino has started his own downfall by becoming the very thing that he claims to fight against, A DICTATOR.

    1. @Domingo Arong

      Thank you buddy for posting the truth about the dark political power grab of the creeping dictatorship which has become bolder in imposing an undeclared martial law in Cebu.

      I am urging all concerned to rise up and exercise your constitutional right to peaceably assemble in expressing your grievances against BS Aquino, Mar Roxas, Vice governor Magpale and the PNP officers and men in Cebu.

      Peaceful People Power will win the day for the Cebuanos! If you are not allowed to enter the Provincial Capitol, then surround the usurpers. Copy the one and only EDSA revolution in showing your mandate by supporting Governor Gwen Garcia.

      Let the clergy and all sectors exercise their democratic rights in peaceful protest actions! Long live freedom and democracy! Down with the dictatorship!

    2. @Domingo Arong

      My goodness…not a lot of people know that the suspension order was not personally received by the governor herself. I can understand now why she is protesting. What they did to her is outrageous.

      And the case against Garcia should have been dropped when the complainant passed away last year. Who else can legally pursue the case apart from the complainant? Clearly, the current administration saw an opportunity they could not pass up.

      Thanks for the link.

    1. It’s ironic that Gov. Garcia has called for “People Power” — something closely associated with the Aquino family since 1986. It would be an even greater irony if it works in Garcia’s favor and forces BS Aquino to back down.

  19. The usurper Magpale had better be careful. She has no legal authority to bodily remove Governor Gwen Garcia. This is because the Court of Appeals has already acquired jurisdiction when it received Governor Garcia’s petition. Magpale cannot afford to preempt the Court of Appeals as she will suffer the legal consequences.

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