MAGANES: Lies and deceits
I don’t have any personal grudge against the media men of the sitting governor, although most of the time over their block time radio programs, I am one of those getting unfavorable tirades from them. I still hope that media men, whether from the other side of any political camp, will still be together after the election. In this small world of media industry, media practitioners in Pangasinan will meet one day in an important event needing media coverage.
While I don’t harbor I’ll-feelings against them, I am pissed off by what they are doing just to appease their patron-client- the sitting governor. Their continuous spewing of “deceits and lies” over their paid radio broadcasts peeves me no end. These mouthpieces of Governor Espino have been eluding real issues in Pangasinan and even twisting the truths on the illegal activities being undertaken in Pangasinan. Of course, being paid broadcasters, they have to parry off issues and make them appear to be the “lies” from the other political camp.
The illegal black sand mining issue in Lingayen has not been put to end yet. Although events leading to the exposure of this illegal activity have been continuously been the subject of radio commentaries, still the Espino camp tries to cover it up. What keeps them on lying?
Politically, the illegal black sand mining issue is a deep wound Espino inflicted on himself and his “annointed son” who will be running for Governor. Corruption is a dreaded “social disease” that is abhorred by the Pangasinenses. Making it appear that Espino has “clean hands” to offer to Pangasinenses will mean another victory at the polls on May 9. But, is it the truth? The cover up is absolutely tainted with lies and deceits to sway the minds of Pangasinenses.
On February 10 this year, the Office of the Ombudsman released a joint order affirming its earlier resolution dated February 28, 2014 indicting Espino, former Provincial Administrator Rafael Baraan, former Provincial Housing and Urban Development Officer Alvin Bigay and the owners of Alexanria Mining and Oil Ventures Inc. and Xypher Builders for violation of Section 3(e) of Republic Act No. 3019 or Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices. This, after the motions for reconsideration of Espino and co-indictees were denied.
The resolution also affirmed the administrative cases against Baraan and Bigay with penalties of ” dismissal from government service, cancellation of licenses and eligibility, forfeiture of benefits and perpetual disqualification to hold office in the government service.” Are these not enough proofs that illegal black sand mining were undertaken in Lingayen? What other proofs do these media men want?
During his press conference last February 12, the sitting governor announced he had already accepted his fate on this issue, which will be elevated to the Sandiganbayan for a full-blown court hearing. However, after his press conference, Espino issued a “press statement” questioning the final resolution of the Ombudsman.. Apparently, he was questioning the wisdom of the Ombudsman in affirming its earlier ruling which set aside their “motions for reconsideration.” All those he pointed out were parts of his defense in his motions but were considered trash by the Ombudsman.
I can’t figure out why Espino kept on denying the illegal black sand mining issue. His two trusted men-Baraan and Bigay, were made “sacrificial lambs” making his leadership put into question. Why, as the highest official of the province, did not take cudgel for the two provincial officials? He even dragged Abono Partylist Chairman Rosendo O. So and gubernatorial aspirant Mark O. Cojuangco into the issue.
Denial is the highest form of defense. All Espino could do is to prepare himself for the hearing at the Sandiganbayan. He could deny there with all his heart’s content that no such illegal black sand mining did not take place in Pangasinan. But don’t you think the Divine Providence will intervene? The mountain of black sand that was mined is still in Malimpuec with a total volume of 9,583 cubic meters. It was already confiscated by the Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR). The equipment used were also confiscated by MGB.
Commentaries about black sand mining issue will continue as long as the sitting governor will keep denying its existence. Complainants, who were previously cowed, are now coming out in the open saying, ” There is justice after all.” And justice will be best served if Espino and his ilk will once and for all tell the truth that they were mistaken in undertaking the black sand mining illegally.
(For comments, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit my blog The Roving Pen at http://www.virgilmaganes.wordpress.com. Listen to my radio programs, “Ang Bagong Bayan Po(e)” aired over DZRD Sonshine Radio, 981 KHZ, 8:00-9:00 AM and “On Your Marks, 2nd Edition” aired over DWPR Radio Asenso, 1296 KHZ,10:15-11:15 AM. Both programs are aired Mondays to Fridays)
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