Congressman Erico Aristotle Aumentado swears in lady pilot, captain Giselle Bendong-Boniel to bring Bien Unido soaring to new heights.
And as a pilot, Bendong-Boniel has her wings and countless flight hours on commercial jets and even recently landing crippled plane to prove.
But, the lady aviator has to get hands on the tiller, albeit a different one, taxiing a town and getting it aligned for the take-off.
While aligning a plane only takes minutes, Bendong-Boniel has three years to steer her town to greatness.
Boniel, along with Vice Mayor Rene Borenaga, Councilors Ramon Arcenal, Froilan Romo Jr., Veer Angelo Autida, Rosemarie Boniel, Angelito Laride, Leonilo Baculfo, Alex Mabalatan and Felicito Garcia also took their oaths before Aumentado who administered their oaths of office, in modest ceremonies attended by friends and families at Talibon Pension House Hall, June 26.
Past the ceremony, the lady aviator takes the yoke and gains full control of the town from her husband, now Board Member-elect Nino Rey Boniel, who completed a full 3 term as town chief executive and elevated Bien Unidoâ€™s economic status from 5th to 4th class town.
Her next direction: taking Bien Unido into better posture to command more economic development, so with her people would need to gun all engines on full thrust to be able to ease out of poverty.
Bien Unido is Boholâ€™s youngest town and is still relatively untouched, under developed and teeming with promise, and may need a ladyâ€™s touch to get going.
For Captain-mayor Giselle, braving the skies with only instruments need only guts. But guts she can not simply rely in taking control of a much bigger flight of a town.
â€œMy administrations priorities would be Health, education, livelihood, environment, tourism and with the biggest heart for children and the senior citizens,â€ she declared.
â€œIt wonâ€™t be a bed of roses and, neither [will it be] a walk in the park,â€ the lady pilot, who was sued with all the tenderness a woman would dream of, before marrying an endeared Boholano politician, candidly admitted.
Totally snapped and strapped now in a new seat, she should be wary, but she forged the unity with the new slate of officials.
â€œIt wonâ€™t be a walk in the park, if we do not unite,â€ she emphasized, sounding like a pilot exuding control.
Hounded by the baggage of lacking the right skills, the lady mayor who knew going into uncharted territory of local governance without logging hours is a risk she canâ€™t afford, she accordingly went back to school ahead of the rest.
â€œShe took a crash course in local governance in Manila,â€ her husband Board member Rey Nino Boniel told the gathering of friends and family at the inaugural oath taking, also attended by Bien Unido parish priest Reynaldo Omamalin.
The crash course offered at the National College of Public Administration and Governance in Quezon City, is a must for newly elected officials.
But instead of simply waiting to be equipped, the new lady mayor opted to learn ahead.
â€œShe wants to hit the ground running, so she could not wait for any delay,â€ the husband told media in an after event interview.
Now modestly equipped with the task at hand, coupled with the discipline and the control that pilots always carry as their philosophy, Mayor Boniel guns her engines, wiggles the ailerons and jolts forward.
With the vows of shaking off party differences from the two opposition councilors in her team, Boniel may have little to worry.
Not very long ago, after successfully landing an ailing commercial plane with one engine conked out, she said, â€œWe were united and had only one goal leaning towards what we call one hell of a successful flight.â€
That may as well be one she can also hold on as she grips the townâ€™s tiller to new heights. (rac/PIA-7/Bohol) Â