Senate President Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel lll, president of the Partido Demokratiko Pilipino – Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban) regarded as incredulous reports that a shakeup in the current leadership of the party in Bohol has been concluded.
Pimentel also expressed disbelief that attendance in seminars on federalism has been shamelessly dangled by organizers as a guarantee of appointments to barangay elective positions if proposed postponement of barangay elections is approved by Congress.
In a text message to the Chronicle, the Senate President said “are the people that gullible? I hope not.”
When pressed for his reaction to the claim of Tagbilaran City Councilor Vicente Polinar that he was now the acknowledged Secretary General of the PDP in the province, Pimentel responded: “There will be a change n Bohol soon, Abangan. N due time.”
The Chronicle sent a text message to Pimentel after participants in a seminar on Federalism held at the BIT International College campus on July 28, 2017 were baffled by the reported declaration of Polinar that he was now the Secretary General of the PDP in Bohol.
3rd District Board Member Dionisio Victor Balite in an interview with the Chronicle after the regular session of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan on Friday confirmed the reported pronouncement of Polinar despite the absence of any document to support his alleged appointment.
Max Almedilla is the present PDP Secretary General for Bohol.
Incumbent PDP Bohol chairman, former Panglao Mayor Dr. Doloreich Dumaluan confirmed the planned change of leadership in the party saying “I have been a long time chairman of the PDP in Bohol and I believe that we should inject new blood to the party to meet the challenges of the future but we have to follow the party process.”
Dumaluan told DYRD “Inyong Alagad” that the first step before the election of new officers is the scheduled trainers training in preparation for the basic membership seminar to be conducted in the 48 chapters in the province.
According to Dumaluan, regular members who wish to aspire for the chairmanship of the party should be a chapter president as provided in their constitution while those who ran under the PDP during the last election despite being non-members were considered associate members and should undergo the basic membership seminar to be officially recognized as regular members.
“In the case of Vice Governor Dionisio Balite, the highest ranking elected PDP regular member, to qualify for the position of party chair, a member should be a chapter president as required by the party rules.”
“I will personally nominate Vice Governor Balite for chairman since I don’t see any difficulty on his part in securing the chapter presidency in his hometown”, added Dumaluan.
Dumaluan also expressed his gratitude to those who worked for the party during the last elections even if they were volunteers for the campaign to ensure the victory of Duterte.
On his part, Polinar told “Inyong Alagad” on Thursday that he acknowledges the leadership of Dumaluan with “great respect and admiration” and assured that the seminar was purely to enlighten the people on federalism which has been the PDP advocacy.
Polinar also assured that attendance to federalism seminars is not a “job fair” as widely believed saying “there is no seminar fee but participants should bring their own food.”
DYRD “Inyong Alagad” heard the side of Polinar after Dumaluan denied that the PDP leadership was informed about these federalism seminars while raising serious concerns about the real motives of the organizers.
Dumaluan signed the certificate of nomination and acceptance (CONA) of Polinar who ran and won under the PDP as Tagbilaran City councilor in the May, 2016 local elections.
CHEAP POLITICAL TRICKERY
Board Member Balite also clarified that a letter invitation for the federalism seminar was sent to all sectors regardless of political affiliation but did not mention that their attendance would ensure their appointment to barangay elective positions if elections are again postponed.
Reports reaching the Chronicle unveiled a sinister scheme hatched by local political hucksters to inveigle those aspiring for barangay elective positions via appointments by President Rodrigo Duterte.
Lists of potential appointees for punong (head) barangay and kagawads (councilors) were shown to the Chronicle by an incumbent city barangay official, on condition of anonymity.
The barangay official told the Chronicle that he was approached by a member of the Sangguniang Panlungsod with the instruction to list down candidates sympathetic to the present administration.
However, a high ranking city hall official identified with the administration got wind of the list and allegedly insisted that several of the city mayor’s men should also be included creating confusion and intrigue among those who were first on the list, according to the Chronicle informant.
The source also told the Chronicle that they were made to believe that their attendance in the just concluded federalism seminar would strengthen their chances of bagging the much-coveted appointments.
Incumbent barangay officials believe that they can only be replaced thru an election and their term extended on a hold-over capacity.
But the clamor to hold village polls as scheduled has been rising considering the perceived political motive lurking behind the appointment process in lieu of elections.
With over 2.7 million registered voters eagerly awaiting for the barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan polls, it’s scheduled date on October 23, 2017 remains uncertain.
Senate Bill No. 1469 seeking to reset the barangay and SK polls to the fourth Mondayof October, 2018 has been filed by Senator Tito Sotto on May 17, 2017 but will have to undergo proceedings on the committee level. (Chito M. Visarra)