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ROUGH CUTS | Lost saw speaks of how he lived

Vic N. Sumalinog

WE do not disagree with the claim of government that it is succeeding in a large way in its campaign against the proliferation of illegal drugs in the country. Only, that we cannot help but doubt the claimed extent of the campaign’s success.

     As many observers may have noted every time the President talks about the so-called success in the anti-illegal drugs campaign, Davao City, with which he was mayor for several years, always comes out as his showcase. Unfortunately however, reports of drug trades in the city only seem to have its lull every now and then. In the last five years that the former mayor left the city for a much bigger responsibility as President of the country and a much wider arena for his campaign against the dreaded drugs, there have been several drug deals busted in the city big and small.

    These incidents actually indicate that the drug trade did not completely vanish in the erstwhile drug-free city. The latest of these incidents of drug dealings were those made by certain persons targeting the inmates of the Davao City Jail in Ma-a. Imagine, the tricky modus done by the shrewd illegal drug trader/s; shabu with an estimated street value of P400 thousand pesos surreptitiously inserted as condiments sandwiched inside some lechon chicken being brought to the City Jail in Ma-a for some inmates! Not only that, there was also another failed attempt to smuggle inside the jail facility illegal drugs through a drone. Good thing the drone conked out while it was still flying outside the fenced perimeter of the jail. The drone which fell on a tree was discovered by a barangay official who reported his discovery to the police.

     Given these two latest incidents of illicit transactions inside a government facility despite warnings of consequences, it is not difficult to imagine that the illegal drug trade continues to flourish not just in the so-called drug-free city but in the whole of the country. Police records of arrests and busts will bear us out.

     Now, as to the latest drug smuggling incident at the Davao City Jail, we believe that the proper authorities should conduct a thorough investigation on the matter. The perpetrators could not have enough courage to undertake his or their illegal transactions if no one with influence at the jail facility has assured the perpetrators protection as to their identities.

     We have no iota of doubt that the jail may have been the home to certain kind of termites as it has been possibly proliferated with rust. And as a line in a famous song goes, “Rust never sleeps.” So are termites. They keep on gnawing whenever they can and where there is something to nibble.


     The other day, a man, a carpenter by occupation, according to members of his family, was killed after his bicycle was hit by a speeding dump truck at the Ulas by-pass road. The man, the police said, was on his way home from work when he accidentally dropped his saw. He reportedly pedaled back to look for his carpentry tool. That was when a reckless driver hit the biking victim. The result is, the man got back to his home not anymore on board his bike but inside a wooden box — minus his saw.    

     The family members were stunned and are now grieving over the accident. But even as they are seeking justice for their deceased love one, they have one single very passionate appeal: That is, for whoever found the saw of their victim relative to please return the tool to his family. According to the wife of the victim, the saw has been an important part of the life of the carpenter-victim. In fact, according to the wife, as fat as her husband and the rest of the family members are concerned, the saw signifies their lives all these years.

     Indeed who will ever argue with them in putting a lot of sentimental value to that particular saw? After all, it was used by the victim to raise his family.

     That particular carpenter’s tool should not be made a basis for a question on how he died. Rather, it should be seen as an effective gauge in determining how the victim and his family lived.


     We are not surprised at all with the presidential mandate of President Rodrigo Duterte to his Cabinet officials not to anymore attend any “invitation” from the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee. The Congressional probers whose mandate for the investigation is pure “in aid of legislation” are instead doing it as prosecutors who are tasked to build up a case against an accused. The likes of Senators Gordon, Ping Lacson, Kiko Pangilinan, Riza Hontiveros, Franklin Drilon – they are doing their thing like they are prosecuting persons whom they have already personally convicted guilty of the crime/s they are suspected of having committed.

     If indeed they are true to their responsibility these senators should just turn over the transcript of their probe to the appropriate investigating bodies for them to do what is necessary. All that the lawmakers should do is establish during the probe where and what particular aspect of any existing laws need to be amended or what laws should be crafted to avoid the occurrence of similar violations from happening again. But no; they are using the probe as opportunity for grandstanding showing their prowess as investigators and destroyers of other persons or corporation’s reputation. These are mostly our lawmakers – senators more specifically — today. Want to have more of their kind or retain them? You know what to do come May 2022 election.



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