MAGANES: When friends turned their backs

December 30, 2012 at 5:13 pm Leave a comment


Last two weeks ago, the whole country particularly Pangasinan was surprised when all of a sudden Bugallon Mayor Ric Orduna, together with Interior Secretary Mar Roxas, Police Director Allan Purisima, Archbishop Oscar Cruz and a certain Boy Alimango, appeared in a press conference revealing that Pangasinan Governor Amado T. Espino Jr. is the ” jueteng lord” of the province and had allegedly amassed P900 million from the illegal operations of jueteng.

I was glued on the TV screen.I could not believe of what I was watching.”What’s happening in my great province?” I asked myself. ” Is this a Chavit versus Erap deja vu?

Oh politics, just politics! I exclaimed. However, when I gave full attention to the press conference, Ordinal said that he has filed a plunder case against Governor Espino at the Ombudsman.

What a revelation! What I am aware of is that Mayor Ordinal and Governor Espino are the best of friends. Paterno Orduna, brother of Mayor Ric, has long served the governor at the Capitol. Pat was one of Espino’s trusted men and with that association, Mayor Ric albeit had endeared himself to Governor Espino. The revelations of Mayor Ric against Governor Espino were unbelievable if I were to recall when the latter was about to take the reign of the Capitol in 2007.

It was mid-month of June 2007. Espino’s groups who were members of transition committees for the smooth turn over of powers from then Governor Victor Agbayani to Espino have been examining all operations of the provincial government’s departments. In our office at that time, Population Office, many documents were requested as if big anomalies have been done. The same was done in other departments.

July 2007, Governor Espino took over the provincial reign. The first thing he said was to put the province in proper perspectives. Department heads were directed to do briefing at the Capitol.Those associated with the Agbayanis were not treated well. Espino and his men were trying to unmask anomalies of Agbayani’s administration.

Indeed it was a sight seeing department heads being quizzed with sarcastic laughter on the sides. The next move was even more scintillating. Department heads known to be close to the Agbayani have to be replaced either by officers in charge or the assistants.

Good government was the tall order from Governor Espino. Employees should be in their offices from 8:00 in the morning up to 5:00 in the afternoon. Good governance. Espino was on a right track then. Many times he said that he wanted to give sanity to the provincial administration.

Eight years as governor, Espino is now facing a fight for his honor and dignity. Of course the allegations must be backed up by evidence. Orduna’s statements could not be taken lightly also. There will be legal battles here that are worth waiting and watching.

Meantime, all Governor Espino could do is to deny the allegations.

“Politically motivated “, he uttered when asked in a press conference. Espino is pitted against Liberal Party bet Alaminos City Mayor Hernani Braganza. There is now a tug- of- war on whom to believe. We hope Governor Espino will be heard. We do not have the knowledge that transpired between him and Mayor Ric Orduna.

While we are anxiously waiting for the resolution of the “jueteng” scandal that rocked the province, one thing is certain, the shattered friendship between Espino and Orduna could no longer be pieced together.

Well readers, this Christmas season, be a blessing to everyone.

(For comments, email me at


Entry filed under: News.

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