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Rough Cuts | Underutilizing some councilors’ expertise?

We went over the list of committees created by the 19th City Council of Davao as published in local papers. We checked as well the committee chairs, vice chairs, and members.

It is unfortunate that somehow, there seems to be underutilization of certain members of the council in the assignment of chairmanship as well as membership in the committees.

One such councilor is Mabel Sunga-Acosta of the First District. We have no doubt that she performed well as chair of the Committee on Peace and Public Safety during the previous council, as well as the Committee on Information that she headed.

But we believe that her experience and dedication to duty could have helped the local legislative body if she were tapped to head other committees, other than her present designated assignment.

Of course we have to give it to the City Council leadership if it believes the strong need to have Councilor Mabel retained in her previous committees. As we said earlier during her chairmanship of the Peace and Public Safety body she demonstrated how a woman with keen eyes for relevant legislations, introduced a lot of measures out of the NCCC fire tragedy that killed 38 people.

We are looking forward to Councilor Mabel doing some miracles to make the other committee that she now heads, the Committee on Special Publications — whatever its duties and responsibilities are — justified as to its existence.

On the other hand Councilor Myrna Dalodo-Ortiz’s assignment to head a single committee — that of Tourism and Beautification — also came as a surprise to us and perhaps to many other people, especially in the Third District.
While it cannot be denied that Dalodo-Ortiz has the knack for creating pulchritude out of otherwise inappreciable objects, we are certain that her long experience in the council and her wide reach of the entire Davao City and knowledge of its physical attributes, made her a cinch for the tourism and beautification body.

But there is also no doubt that the same capability could have already prepared her to head committees other than that of her recent designation.
Nevertheless, we subscribe to the dictum that the relevance of any committee or body depends on what its head and members make out of it.
So, for the time being we give chance to the wisdom of the 19th council leadership in putting Councilor Ortiz in that committee and judge such decision later.

But of course there is one thing in the council committee assignment that did not escape our attention. Certain councilors have so much in their plate that we doubt if they could be effective in discharging their duties.
Is this not a case of giving flesh to that line of a Frank Sinatra song about something “more than you could chew?” Just asking.

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‘No jackets’ at checkpoints: TF. News headline.

This came about as the Task Force – Davao command announced during a press forum that it is tightening security inspection procedures in various checkpoints put in place in roads leading to Davao City proper.

The strict implementation of security measures came as an offshoot of the reported twin suicide bombings in a checkpoint in Indanan, Sulu that led to the death of some eight people including three army personnel.

According to TF Davao commander Col. Consolito Yecla, the security forces in the city has to adopt the stricter procedure to obviate the possibility of suicide bombers being able to slip military checkpoints and enter the city to do terroristic activities using themselves as carriers of strong explosives.

Like what happened in Indanan, the bombers detonated the explosives put in a vest strapped to their bodies upon reaching their target. And even as their bodies were blown into smithereens they were made to believe prior to the execution of their act that they are sacrificial heroes to the cause they are fighting for.

And it is possibly these kind of fanatics that Colonel Yecla is trying to prevent from coming to Davao City. We can only imagine the magnitude of damage created and the number of lives snapped if suicide terrorists reach Davao City proper and are able to do their dastardly mission in this part of Mindanao.

So, knowing that vest with explosives can be concealed from the probing eyes of checkpoint personnel, Yecla finds it necessary to ask passengers of any transportation coming to Davao to step down and submit to bodily inspection. They also have to take off their jacket if they are wearing one. And the removal has to be done some thirty meters before reaching the checkpoint installation.

Now, that policy gives some kind of a martial law scene in the city. But what that little inconvenience can give in return to the people of this premiere city of the south is something beyond imagining. After all, safety of people is primordial over anything else.
Carry on Colonel Yecla. We are certain that procedure is something not to worry about by law abiding travelers.

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