Saturday, April 12, 2014
Bred-In-The-Bone “Epal” Style of Stumping Keeps Roxas Flailing out of the Water.
“Christmas in Lent: Roxas togive P4B for survivors” reads the Inquirer headline of an article by Marlon Ramos, a Philippine Daily Inquirer columnist. Something is egregiously wrong with this headline. It sounds as though Mar Roxas is giving away his own money out of his generosity. This is the same poor and inflammatory bred-in-the-bone “epal” style of stumping. It unwittingly or wittingly offends the taxpayers, who now more than ever feel pained by the brazen raid of public coffers, courtesy of PDAF and DAP.
And it does not stop there. Roxas, the disconnected politico that he is, waltzed with this anomaly as he handed over to the local officials of his home province, Capiz, 200 million in rehabilitation aid, saying: “Advance Happy Easter. May you spend your money wisely to help your [constituents].” Really, this is how irresponsibly inept or helpless the government is in ensuring that taxpayers’ money, as this 200 million pesos, is spent as planned and approved?
He should have said anything to the effect that the Commission on Audit (COA) will be hot on their trail in seeing to it that those funds are spent as intended, otherwise the Ombudsman will be all over them, and will definitely file cases against those found responsible—clearly the thrust that the administration, at least, is projecting, so why not reinforce it.
While he later warned politicians against epal or credit-grabbing stunts, as embellishing projects with their names, he was up front doing it. That he further warned that Pnoy would be closely monitoring the use of funds, mattered less, because he overshadowed it with his shadowy remarks.
I don’t want to go as far as to say that this is intended or meant as coming from his gut, but his handlers have to manage these political miscues if they were to succeed in rebuilding his sullied political image.