Editorial

Forcing the issue

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An elective position is something those who have gotten it seemed to have a hard time getting their hands off.

Power delegated to them by the sovereign – the people – must have brought a lot of good things, it has become addictive.

It was no wonder the world was shocked when at a frail age of 85, Pope Benedict XVI announced his resignation last Tuesday.

But that is not the issue we are going to tackle today, it is about the lesser mortals delegated with the vast powers of the government through election.

How many among the candidates are, of the same age as the Pope?

A fiery senator battling hypertension may have a point in saying many of his political nemesis are just up and about doing their thing because of stem cell therapy – yet another sensitive moral issue opposed by the Roman Catholic Church.

In historical times, it was thought that possessing power is a divine right of a chosen few, the elite, the royalty.

But as history unfolded and society evolved, this divine right of the royalty to hold power has been questioned and the modern republics emerged.

But even as civilization advanced in leaps and bounds in the last 100 years, some primitive ideas and practices are still pervasive.

The law on term limit of elected officials owes its roots on the country’s nightmarish Martial Law experience. The rule on residency has been there since biblical days.

Which would have made the issue of whether Cebu City north district Councilor Jun Pe who is serving out his third term should rest even for just three years a no brainer. Just like Rep. Tomas Osmeña who went to Congress after finishing three consecutive terms as mayor in 2010.

But it seemed that it is not even the case with Pe.

A crack in the three term limit rule seemed to surface – the creation of new political divisions like the division of Cebu City into the north and south district.

And Pe who filed his certificate of candidacy for city councilor in the south district may continue with the legal hairsplitting as the Commission on Election disqualification is not based on the three term limit rule but on his residency.

But while he may argue in the next legal forum his case, it also shows how insatiable some people’s appetite for power can become.

And forcing the issue may leave a bad taste in the mouth.

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