By Herbert Vego
THE problem with our representatives is that they always say “for the people” whenever they introduce measures beneficial to themselves.
This truism reared its ugly head in the House of Representatives’ passed resolution calling for a constitutional convention (con-con) “to amend the economic provisions of the 1987 Charter” – as in allowing foreigners to invest 100%, instead of the prevailing 40% limit, in business and real estate.
Obviously misrepresenting their constituents – there being no public outcry for that amendment — 301 congressmen voted “yes” to the measure, against six “no” votes and one abstention.
As most congressmen are wont to do, they favored what’s personally good for them. We wonder, however, who’s manipulating or paying whom.
Let’s pretend they have Chinese “clients” who could not own a piece of property in China because it is not allowed there. So, why not come to our country and edge out the struggling Pinoy entrepreneurs.
We fear that their more selfish reason is to railroad the con-con into extending their terms of office and dismantling term limits, which could perpetuate themselves in power with the usual tools of the trade – gold, guns and goons.
Since the leader of the band, Speaker Martin Romualdez, is a first cousin of President Marcos, could the latter be the real McCoy?
The Senate, on the other hand, is believed to be in favor of transforming themselves into a constituent assembly (con-ass). So what? Any which way leads to the same end, as in driving on different roads to reach the same destination.
Our solons could not be proud of their track record. For instance, they have ignored the provision of the existing Constitution asking them to enact a law prohibiting political dynasties in pursuit of Article II, Section 26): “The State shall guarantee equal access to opportunities for public service, and prohibit political dynasties as may be defined by law.”
That ignored provision stands to be finally “killed” in the event a con-con or con-ass shapes up.
Yes, Virginia, the voice of the “gods” is not the voice of the people.
NEW SUBSTATION MIRRORS MODERNIZATION
KUDOS to MORE Electric and Power Corp. (MORE Power) for another giant step in its five-year modernization program with the full energization of its new 30/36 MVA (mega -volt amperes) substation at the Megaworld, which is now Iloilo City’s world-class commercial hub.
The substation boasts of automation features, including protection from external and internal faults.
As envisioned by MORE Power President Roel Z. Castro, the substation features a state-of-the-art system to support the growing demand for electricity in Iloilo City. It deserves no less, since Megaworld is host to the city’s finest hotels, call centers, condos and shopping centers.
The new feeder coverage is not restricted to the Megaworld area; it also empowers portions of barangays San Rafael, Airport, Abeto-Mirasol and Sta. Rosa.
From a customer base of 62,000 households and establishments in 2020 when it began energizing Iloilo City, it has grown to around 90,000. According to MORE Power’s customer-care manager Maricon Garrido, it’s not just because of new residents coming in from other places but also because hitherto power pilferers now want to go “legal” and avoid fire hazards.
She said that even the urban poor or informal settlers who squat in public and private properties, may now get connected with trimmed-down requirements, namely an electrical safety inspection report with electrical plan and vicinity map from the City Engineer’s Office, a government-issued ID, a barangay certificate of residency and an oath of undertaking.
A REVIVED ‘SMILE’ WORTH SMILING OVER
THERE was a time in the 1970s when a businessman surnamed Vengco invited me to his office in Quiapo, Manila. He offered me a job — to edit a magazine which would be named “Smile”.
Alas, the project never took off.
But much later in the 1990s, Cebu Pacific named its in-flight magazine Smile.
It must have been due to the Covid-19 pandemic that Smile stopped “smiling”.
But now, the good news is that it has returned to the skies with its March-April 2023 issue, according to Selrahco Management. Hi there, Sir Charles Lim!
Thank God, the unvaccinated (including me), may now fly to any of Cebu Pacific’s 34 domestic destinations and 25 international destinations.