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ROUGH CUTS | Mayor Baste casting own shadow

LAWYERS beware!

Here is one bit of news that may make lawyers in the country extra careful in their dealings with clients or the public.

In a post we read early yesterday morning on social media, and perhaps was already the screaming headlines in the national papers yesterday, the Supreme Court voting 15-0 disbarred lawyer Larry Gadon, newly appointed Presidential Adviser on poverty alleviation.  This was after some groups elevated his bad-mouthing journalist Maria Ressa to the highest court using unconscionable expletives.

That is what Gadon gets in his efforts to gain media attention when he was running for senator. But the language he used clearly did not endear him to the voting public. Gadon ended up among the tail-enders in the race for the Senate in the May 2022 national elections.

How will Gadon handle his humiliation by the Supreme Court? Maybe he will do a Maria Ressa. That is, loudly cry that he is deprived of his freedom of expression. We are certain of that. What we are not certain about is his credibility in invoking such a guarantee from the Constitution.


Mayor Baste Duterte is now starting to show that while he is a chip from his old block, his father former President Rodrigo Duterte, he has his own way of dealing with his constituents.

Over the past week or so, we learned that the younger Duterte sibling was all over several barangays in the rural areas to interact with the people. Late last week, he was in a village in the Marilog District to join the people in celebrating their “Araw ng Barangay.” Last Tuesday, he was in Barangay Biao Joaquin also to be part of the celebration of the barangay day.

Meanwhile, the young mayor was reported to have gritted his teeth after seeing the volume of the millions of pesos worth of prohibited drugs confiscated by the authorities while on their way to Davao City.

We can understand the mayor’s feeling because had the illegal drugs been successfully slipped through the city, it would have meant hundreds of lives of some gullible residents would be on the road to perdition.

But what is boggling the people’s minds is that after years of Davao City being relatively drug-free, there seems to be a resurgence of the socially destructive trade of late. Are the drug lords in this part of Mindanao or those who are subalterns of the drug syndicates based in Manila feeling more freedom to make their illegal trade in Davao compared to some years back?

Are they trying to make it appear that the current mayor can easily be kept blind to their illegal activities in the city? Or, are the gods of drug traders able to establish “connections” with some sectors of law enforcers in the city that they seem to be enjoying a certain degree of flexibility in their movement?

It is very clear that with media reports of drugs shipments nabbed in city checkpoints and of arrests of some suspected criminals apparently high on drugs upon their arrest or at the time of their commission of the crime, the demand for the illegal substance is still high, or on the rise.

Therefore, if the present trend continues, then it is eating up on the gains of the fight against illegal drugs in Davao City launched during the time of Mayor Baste’s father and sister.

But of course, as we said earlier, the mayor is slowly showing his own style of governance and dealing with the problems affecting the city and its population. Perhaps he is now on the tail-end of his “feeling his way around.”

Perhaps, with a little more time and with the help of the people of Davao City and a more in-depth study of the experiences of his father and sister, Mayor Baste will be able to restore whatever is lost in the fight against illegal drugs and perhaps approximate or even better the status that used to exist before his watch of the city.


What is the latest in the search by the police of the ombac tricycle used in the commission of the crime of rape with homicide in Calinan over a month ago?

Have the police already established the identities of the vehicle’s owner and the fourth suspect that they claimed to have gone into hiding other than the usual “John Doe? So far, there seems to be an intriguing silence on all of the above.   


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