Presidentiables and JPEPA

I was totally surprised that my post on October 9, 2008 on the Senate vote on the Japan-Philippine Economic Partnership Agreement (JPEPA) would attract interest these past few days.

I noticed that this particular post “Only 4 voted ‘no’ on JPEPA” was getting many hits.

Well, in that story, I wrote Senator Noynoy Aquino “a new hero,” Senator Mar Roxas a “wimp,” and in the comments section, I added Senator Manny Villar being “more presidentiable” and Senator Chiz Escudero having “more major league balls.”

You too might want to revisit the story in the light of recent political developments.

Incidentally, it might interest you to know that surveys among so-called presidentiables between December 2007 and December 2008 revealed an interesing fact.

It showed that only two such “presidentiables” lost ground, while a number made more headway.

Who are these two, you might ask?

Believe it or not, the two Ilonggo senators – Miriam Defensor Santiago and Mar Roxas, the main proponents of JPEPA.

Mar has not recovered from this slide. I believe he was punished for his JPEPA stand.

Go check your stats.

Thanks for the hits

Big thanks to all those who have been dropping by this blog.

I was surprised that in spite of my 5-month leave and no post at all, my blog was still receiving on average 30 hits a day. Many reached this blog through search engines with the tags in my past posts.

The day I resumed blogging, I had 58 hits. Not bad for starting this blog all over again.


Back to blog

I am now back to blog.

It has been more than five months since I took this self-imposed leave, partly in protest, partly because of the weak net signal in my house.


Well, I stop blogging because the Headquarters of Senator Mar Roxas for President accused my blog of feeding information to the enemy! Har har har.

Now, that Roxas has ended his quest just three hours ago to run for President to give way to Senator Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino, I felt that I can now go back to blogging. Thank God no more eager-beaver campaigners of Roxas to spite me who gave more premium to security than transparency or empowering the Roxas campaign and the people through blogging.

As local chair of the Liberal Party in Davao, I was organizing party units in the Davao Region and forming groups to support Roxas until I was forced to quit in April due to these unfounded accusations that “my blog was feeding information to the enemy.”

Of course, it is not my nature to “feed the enemy with information” or to put my principal at risk. The contents of my blog were not party or state secrets. I was really floored by the baseless accusations against my blog. Hence my leave of absence as a sort of protest.

I guess my silence has won the fight today.

What have I been doing since I took the leave you might ask?

Well, I organized, produced and co-hosted The Evening News Davao in local cable television. It is the only evening news in the city and it airs from Monday to Friday at 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. and replayed at 12 midnight.

So, I was terribly busy these past few months.

Now, that I am back to blog, I would have to find time to do this as regularly as I can.

And hopefully not “to feed any enemy with information.” Har har har!

On leave


Lucky lunch

Friday the 13th and I had a lucky lunch with Manila and Davao bloggers.

I came first at Tadakuma Japanese Restaurant at the Damosa Business Center in Lanang. And this was what welcomed me:


A neatly arranged table for the bloggers for their Food Appreciation Tour aka “food trip”

The taste test tour of several local resto was organized by Blogie Robillo, shown here with our young hosts – Toby and Tisha Ang.


Among the celebrity bloggers in town from Manila is no other than MLQIII himself (left below) with Blogie, Kim and me:


Visit the blogosphere for the many posts about the food trip. I am sure you would enjoy the fun as I did.

Was the food ok? Here’s what was left of my plates and bowls!


Definitely a place I would recommend not only for my family and friends, but to Davao visitors as well. Call 082-234-8813 for reservation.

Linked to serve


Promoting blogging as tool for participatory governance. “Linked to serve” forum at the Holy Cross of Davao College yesterday.


I just added three friends in my blogroll:

CQ Francisco’s My Mindanaw

Edwin Espejo’s Portal; and

Prix Banzon


Day 1 of the New Year and I guess I need to start the countdown to the end of my 3rd term in the City Council.

2009 would be my last full year in the City Council. My 9-year, 3-term stint at the local legsilative body ends on June 30, 2010.

There are still plenty of work to do and this year would indeed be a busy one. After taking it slow the past year to help me recover from my stomach ailment, I must now take extra effort to work harder and try to complete my legislative agenda.

January 6 is the resumption of the City Council session and I have already lined up three measures, namely, the extension up to January 31 the period for the renewal of business licenses, which is set by law during the first 20 days of the month; preparations for the Chinese New Year and inauguration of the second arch at Chinatown; and release of the balance of the city government Internal Revenue Allotment (IRA) as a result of the Supreme Court decision declaring the conversion of 16 towns into new cities last year as illegal.

On the last issue, the city is supposed to receive P2.055 billion in IRA shares last year. But because of the creation of new cities, this was reduced to P1.861 billion. Instead of an increase of P263 million from the previous year, the city got only an additional P69 million, thereby losing about P194 million.

With the High Court ruling, the city rightfully deserves to receive the full share of the IRA. We need this money to help pump prime the local economy and provide more social services as we face the effects of the global recession in our city.

Thank you to the Christmas cheers from Franklyn Ong of Pasajero Motors, Johnny Martinez of Mantex and DCWD.

Most important things during Yuletide

Find out here how Davaoenos spend the Yuletide holidays without firecrackers. They learned to embrace the most important things during Christmas.

Thanks for more Christmas cheers from Mayor Rody Duterte, Vice Mayor Inday Sara Duterte, Councilors Leo Avila, Tess Mata-Maranon, City Librarian Fe Alajar, Julio T. Cruz Group of Companies, Holcim, Chamber president Sim Marfori, Chary and Wit Holganza, and to Class 74 of the Davao City High School who sang Christmas carols to my family last night.

Im back

Thank you for waiting. I’m back.

I went off blogging due to my hectic travel schedule the past three weeks. I did not bring along my laptop and did not have any easy access to the net.

I know I missed a lot and will have to make up.

Now, I’m busy preparing for Christmas presents and gifts for about 300 individuals and groups. Actually my office started giving gifts since December 1.

In return, I have received early Christmas presents. Big thanks to the following:

1. Councilor Danny Dayanghirang;

2. NCCC Mall;

3. Mr. & Mrs. Devin Uraya of Uraya Land; and

4. Davao Association of Credit Men, Inc.

Today would be another busy day. Here are some of my appointments:

1. Davao City High School Alumni Homecoming at The Venue with Class 58 and Class 83 celebrating their golden and silver anniversaries respectively;

2. OFW Family Day at SM Parking Lot;

3. Phoenix Oil Christmas Party at Apo View Hotel;

Tomorrow and on Tuesday, the City Council wold hold its final two sessions for the year.

Temporarily off

I have a number of trips starting next week. So, I am taking a temporary leave from this blog.

Nov 18 – 20 Manila for the National Inventors Competition;

Nov 26 – Dec 2 Brunei for the 6th BIMP-EAGA Friendship Games;

Dec 3 – 4 San Juan, Metro Manila for the city sisterhood agreement;

Dec 5 – 7 Manila for the Philippine Councilors League conference;

Dec 13 -15 Bacolod for the National Boxing Championships; and

Dec 20 – 21 Cebu for an OFW conference

Advance Merry Christmas to all of you dear readers!

Historic vote

A convert

This former strongman who shunned free press in the past is not only a press freedom convert.

He has turned to blogging to write his thoughts and present his opinions. And he is willing to go to jail for it!

I’m free today and so I’m spending this lazy Sunday listening to concerts.

I just started with Santana’s live concert at Palladium, New York on Feburary 9, 1978 via Wolfgang’s Vault.

Next I will tune in to Neil Young and Led Zep.

Come, join the fun!

2nd Mindanao bloggers summit

Best wishes to all Mindanao bloggers who are attending the 2nd summit at General Santos City starting today.

I would not be able to make it to the Tuna Capital of the Philippines to attend the conference. I am confident though of its success following last year’s inaugural summit held here in Davao City.

With the likes of Avel of Bariles Republic at the helm and supported by the The Usual Suspects who were involved the 1st summit, things are indeed looking bright for the relevance of bloggers in this part of the virtual world.

I am truly happy that our ranks are expanding although I feel frustrated that not many public officials answered our own calls for them to use this new tool to promote government-to-citizen and citizen-to-government (G2C-C2G) communication.

Maybe by the 3rd summit more public officials, by the proximity of the 2010 elections, would embrace blogging.