Now Is the time for President Ferdinand Romualdez Marcos, Jr. to “walk his talk” – that he is President of the Republic of the Philippines and not just of Luzon where his paternal root comes from, or the Visayas, specifically the Waray-speaking region where her mother was born and raised.
We know that not a single Cabinet secretary of Marcos, Jr.’s administration hails from Mindanao. Yes, there are undersecretaries and assistant secretaries. But these are inconsequential positions given as payback for political support.
So, with the coming retirement of Philippine National Police (PNP) Director General Benjamin Acorda, Jr. this coming December the President can make amends in such lapse as forgetting that there are Mindanaoans who are as capable or even better than those who come from Luzon or the Visayas.
Yes, with Mindanaoans being left out in the formation of the President’s government, it is as if nobody meets his standard to join in the top echelon of his governance. Even in the armed or uniformed services, the highest officials come from Luzon, specifically the Ilocano-speaking regions. PNP’s Acorda is Ilocano; Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces of the Philippines Gen. Romeo Brawner, Jr. also comes from Northern Luzon.
Sometime in the middle of December this year Acorda will reach his compulsory age of retirement – 56. Unless the President will extend his term Acorda will have to go. The PNP’s second highest man Lt. Gen. Rodel Sermonia will be retiring in January of 2024. So if he is chosen he barely has one month to serve. What can he do for 30 or more days in office?
So this could be the better opportunity for President Bongbong to prove that he can also trust Mindanaoans to head the more than two hundred thousand strong Police organization. He can give the position to Lt. Gen. John Michael Dubria, a Mistah and batchmate of General Acorda at the Philippine Military Academy (PMA).
General Dubria has proven his worth in the various commands he was assigned to in the past. He served with distinction as Police Regional Director of Region 12 based in General Santos City. His most recent position in the PNP was as Head of the PNP Directorial Staff. He was also assigned as Chief of PNP Visayas Regional commands (Central, Western and Eastern Visayas PNP regions).
In all these assignments we never heard even just a single controversy dragging General Dubria’s name. And he has still a year to serve if appointed as head of the PNP – more than enough time to implement projects and programs for the national police.
Moreover, appointing a Mindanaoan as PNP Director General could be the President’s way of striking a balance should there be destabilization moves coming from any of the services of the AFP that are headed by officials coming from Luzon or the Visayas.
We are hoping that Marcos, Jr. will finally consider a Mindanaoan in General Dubria for the next PNP Director General. It could be his most appropriate way of paying a debt of gratitude to the people in this island, more specifically of Davao City, who went all out for him during the May, 2022 Presidential election.
Mindanaoans have the number that no one President can ignore if he is to succeed in his administration.
What is this complaint we heard from some winning barangay councilors who came from the line-up of defeated barangay chairmen that they were not informed by the winning village captains of the last mass oath-taking before Mayor Baste Duterte?
We commiserate with them. This early they are already victims of partisan politics even in the smallest unit of government. So, they have to go to some judges or prosecutors to take their oath and have their swearing officially documented.
We would not be surprised if during the incumbency of the winning barangay chairmen, these Kagawads who were not advised of the mass oath-taking will be the filibusters in the Sangguniang Barangay to the chagrin of the barangay chairmen.
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