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.

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  • Practicalandconcerned

    I guess she can’t get over herself…simple secret the sooner you accept it the sooner you’ll be comfortable and able to move on…

  • DinngMae

    Suspended Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia has nobody to blame in the fiasco except herself. To aggravate the situation, she listened to Vice President Jejomar Binay whose primordial interest is to capture Malacanang, by hook or by crook, and score a political victory by using other people like Garcia.

    At this point in time, the governor should already realize that she’s being used by Binay as a tool for political exigency and the only way to extricate herself is to move out and restore the Cebuano’s respect and trust in her.

    Holding up in the Capitol to expose the alleged political witch hunt of the administration is not an effective way to do it. The Capitol should never be used to raise a point. It is a property owned by the people and Garcia should be aware of it. The longer the provincial government could not dispense public service normally, the more she exposes herself to the people as a tyrant.

    It is time for Garcia to be reminded that real political power emanates from an enlightened citizenry and no amount of Epoxy – grade adhesiveness could make her cling to power once the ballot box starts to come in.

    • Bing Chavez

      Well-spoken! Happy New Year!!

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/ROHE5UZ4CGDKA34F7LCVAARLCQ Leonardo

    mrs. gwen garcia, juz leave the office of the governor – breath some fresh air, recharge yourself, then plan your move with careful measures and address all issues that lead to your suspension. in doing this move you’ll give cebu a new year of peace.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/CYUXU35XHVC6K7HGRCZNI7JOFA PAZ

    E,ano ba ang aasahan sa ngayon. Puro siraan , turuan. Sumunod na lang si Garcia dahil baka madagdagan pa kaso nya. Nagmamatigas sya di ba nya nakita ang nangyari kay Corona? hahaha, isipin mo si Lito Lapid isa sa mga humatol ng guilty kay CJ Corona! hahaha. Noong hatulan sa senado si Corona para bang O, CJ Corona ako si Hestas at sya naman si Barabas at ang hatol namin sa yo ay guilty. PARANG NASA ISKUL BUKOL LANG SILA!!! hahahaha si CJ Corona hinatulan nina Lito Lapid!!! TUWID NA DAAN!!!

  • boybakal

    As GMA wants furlough on Christmas and New Year, Garcia made a sourdough.
    Her last stand is for naught.
    As the Governor acts as governor, Garcia is now a de facto governor.
    Better come out go home…there’s no place like home….hot shower and nice meal.

  • kilabot

    gwen, stay in the capitol until after the elections; 
    by then, we will know who cebuanos prefer; 
    don’t listen to people talking about rule of law because they themselves are lawbreakers; 
    if up to now they haven’t dragged you out, then they are not capable of doing it; no balls; 
    meantime, relax and enjoy your capitol stay.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/JOSZ2TW24FKJLQA6R3D24RZ24Y freemystic

    Well, just let her spend the rest of her days inside her “official” office.  Just make sure she pays for the electricity and water and other utilities.  After all, it’s public consumption, not for her own personal use.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/XFH3CDZSZKVLX4G74PJOQ3L64U Natx Bacalzo

    what the garcias need is a large dose of humility and a battery of good lawyers when she and winston will eventually be brought to the courts for their abuses while in power. 

  • valsore

    She has to scratch where it itches. Resolve your misdeeds first. An unethical leader loses her charisma, and consequently the people’s will to be her followers. And now she adds more fuel to the fire by being an enemy of the state.

  • calixto909

    That’s why Garcia and her tribe shall be toying with the law as usual because you as an editor of a respected tabloid thereat Cebu neglect to nail her coffin now that you have the opportune time by way of blasting to kingdom come the likes of Binay, Enrile et al who kept on issuing impassioned statements to encourage and defend Garcia, thus providing more adrenalin to this suspended governor to be more arrogant. The continued blah blah blah of Binay , et al is harming the legal and political institutions of the country for how can our laws be respected if a Vice president, a senator and a governor refused to uphold it?

    The power of the pen, Editor is mightier than guns and bullets. These politicians as we all knew are scared or rather in hiding behind the skirt of their spouses once Media start poking their noses into their affairs. Your editorial bespeaks of the truth that the Cebuanos desires most to allow the law runs is course so on this cue, you should have given Binay, et al a dose of their own medicine

  • Taiko_Kauna

    “Garcia needs a hand to set her free”, that hand may come from Garbo.

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