Latest Stories


Looking for a graceful exit

After being cooped up in her Capitol office for 13 straight days, it wouldn’t be surprising if suspended Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia yearned to be on the road visiting towns as she’s used to doing – or just to go home for a hot shower and the freedom to move around.

Christmas was spent in unprecedented fashion – noche buena with the Garcia clan and a daughter’s birthday in the Governor’s Office.

Include New Year’s Eve. That’s how far she’s taking her declaration that she will wait for court relief to reverse the President’s order for a six-month suspension and continue to perform the duties of a governor at the Capitol.

The sacrifice is entirely self-imposed.

There’s are no “duties” to perform anymore with Acting Gov. Agnes Magpale sworn in as chief executive. For financial operations, the flurry of bills that have reached Magpale’s desk in the amount of almost P200 million, per report of the Provincial Treasurer, are looking for her signature, not Garcia’s to exact payment.

When the New Year rolls in, guess who will be visited in the Capitol for courtesy calls by government and private sector leaders?

Judging from Garcia’s exuberant speech to about 1,000 supporters who marched to the Capitol Sunday afternoon of Day 12 she’s ready to spend the Sinulog in her office as well.

The question is: Should the Office of the President and the Garcia clan wait that long to resolve an impasse that has reached absurd lengths?

The need to explore a graceful exit is a conversation that should begin, in the spirit of the new year.

It will take a kind, patient hand to channel Garcia’s raging sense of injustice to the proper venue, the courts of law. Perhaps that’s what Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma tried to do when he made a pastoral visit to the Capitol and met for two hours with Gwen and the family last week.

It’s a start. Ricardo Cardinal Vidal has also remained open to playing the role of peacemaker.

Nobody wants a violent ending but the risk of that goes up the longer the standoff drags on.

The title holder has sworn not to leave the Capitol “over my dead body” till a court reverses the suspension order ­- and that relief may not come at all.

Her oath will not be set aside lightly.

The Court of Appeals is not likely to spit out a temporary restraining order against a decision of the President in an administrative case that is “final and executory,” especially one based on a carefully penned recommendation by the late Local Government Secretary Jesse Robredo, who lived and breathed good governance.

In the first place, there is nothing more to restrain. The suspension order has been served and acknowledged by the larger world, even if Garcia and her family and followers choose to ignore it.

If it isn’t dismissed outright, a CA hearing or exchange of pleadings could stretch to weeks if not months.

While some actors prefer high drama in the Capitol, the rest of peace-loving Cebuanos just want to move on and settle the hardcore political choices of leadership in the right venue – the May 2013 election.

Cebu province can’t be run by two governors, one acting and the other in denial.

In a prison of her own choosing, Gwen Garcia needs a hand to set her free.

Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter

Other Stories:

More from this Column:

Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
  1. Santiago accuses Lacson of fronting for Enrile, Gigi Reyes
  2. Name names, Lacson told
  3. Santiago: Enrile, Lacson, Reyes plotting massive psywar operation
  4. Slain officer’s ‘diagram’ rocks PNP
  5. Kris Aquino’s ex- close in security named new Air Force chief
  6. Ex-COA chief nabbed for plunder
  7. 12 senators on Napoles ‘pork’ list, says Lacson
  8. Obama: US will defend Japan vs China
  9. Save the queen? Aide takes fall for Enrile, Gigi Reyes
  10. HK apology: Why Estrada and not Aquino?
  1. Napoles spills beans on Enrile, Estrada, Revilla – De Lima
  2. 12 senators on Napoles ‘pork’ list, says Lacson
  3. Gigi Reyes pins blame on aide
  4. Estrada: Gigi Reyes won’t testify vs JPE
  5. Bernice Lee arrested by NBI team
  6. Enrile chief aide back in PH ‘to face charges’
  7. Cedric Lee’s cohort flies out of PH despite look-out order – De Lima
  8. Suspect in Vhong Navarro’s mauling wants to turn state witness – De Lima
  9. Reckless driver endangered lives of Aquino, entourage–report
  10. Lawyer: Napoles ‘will tell all’
  1. MRT passengers pass the hat for 6-year-old Ashley
  2. Rookie, lady cops lauded for quick response to MOA heist
  3. Napoles spills beans on Enrile, Estrada, Revilla – De Lima
  4. Malaysia averts another air tragedy; pilot lands troubled plane safely
  5. Revilla says he was joking; Lacson stands by his story
  6. Revilla ‘consulted’ Lacson on how he evaded arrest
  7. 12 senators on Napoles ‘pork’ list, says Lacson
  8. Gigi Reyes pins blame on aide
  9. Cudia, dismissed for lying, got 99% in conduct
  10. Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano


  • Lacson rejects calls to name ‘pork’ execs
  • Obama due in Seoul as North Korea nuclear test fears grow
  • Hold departure order out vs Corona, Singson
  • Malaysia to release MH370 report–PM
  • Man found dead in Quezon City, alleged victim of summary execution–report
  • Sports

  • Michael Phelps loses to Lochte in comeback meet
  • Sharapova advances to Stuttgart quarterfinals
  • Galedo caps ride of redemption
  • Beermen, Express dispute second semis slot today
  • Lady Agilas upset Lady Bulldogs in four sets
  • Lifestyle

  • ‘Recovered’ Banksy works on display ahead of sale
  • Marinduque: Visiting the ‘palm of the ocean’
  • First at Vatican in 60 years
  • How Jing Monis Salon gave Krissy the pixie
  • Want to be a supermodel? Work on your inner beauty, says Joey Espino
  • Entertainment

  • Paul McCartney to play at Candlestick concert
  • Kristoffer Martin: from thug to gay teen
  • Has Ai Ai fallen deeply with ‘sireno?’
  • California court won’t review Jackson doctor case
  • Cris Villonco on play adapted from different medium
  • Business

  • PAL hailed for ban on shark fin cargo
  • BSP to change tint of P100 bill
  • Nielsen sees car buying boom in the Philippines
  • How author of best-seller exposed ‘one percent’ economic elite
  • Bangko Sentral readies new bank lending rules
  • Technology

  • Cloud strength helps Microsoft earnings top Street
  • Vatican announces hashtag for April 27 canonizations
  • Enrile in Masters of the Universe, Lord of the Rings?
  • Top Traits of Digital Marketers
  • No truth to viral no-visa ‘chronicles’
  • Opinion

  • Editorial Cartoon, April 25, 2014
  • No deal, Janet
  • Like making Al Capone a witness vs his gang
  • MERS-CoV and mothers
  • A graduation story
  • Global Nation

  • China welcomes PH apology
  • Only 4 Etihad passengers not accounted for
  • Abandoned in Malta,15 PH seamen return
  • Senator hopes PH will also get same vow
  • HK victims to get P115M; traders raised money
  • Marketplace