By Perry Diaz   


‘Rigodon de Bobo’


After six months in office, President Benigno “P-Noy” Aquino III is being criticized for surrounding himself with bumbling and inexperienced people in high positions in his administration. And the latest buzz is that there is infighting in his official family among the “Balay,” “Samar,” and “Times Street” factions.   Throw in P-Noy’s legal team into the fracas and you end up with a “Rigodon de bobo.”  Yup, that is, a bunch of bobos dancing rigodon.


The other day, Communications Secretary Ricky Carandang was quoted – of course he’d deny it -- as saying that Executive Secretary or “Little President” Paquito “Jojo” Ochoa Jr. will lose his post at the end of the one-year ban on the appointment of losing candidates.  Ricky said either former Sen. Mar Roxas or Energy Secretary Jose Rene Almendras would take over as “Little President.” But “Mojo” Jojo is untouchable, Ricky!  

And guess where Jojo would be appointed?  Secretary of Justice, kuno.  Hmm… After drafting executives orders full of holes, he’s now going to head the Department of Justice?  I can just see Ombudsman Merceditas Gutierrez and Midnight Chief Justice Renato Corona laughing and giggling.


And where would Justice Secretary Leila de Lima go?  Chairman of the Commission on Elections (Comelec), kuno. No wonder Comelec Chairman Carmelo Melo is retiring two years earlier.  I wouldn’t be surprised if “Mellow” Melo would soon be appointed to a plum ambassadorial position. 


Now, the question is: Why is De Lima being shoved out of the Justice Department when she’s doing a wonderful job, which includes the Incident Investigation Review Committee (IIRC) report on the August 23 bloody hostage-taking fiasco?  Hmm…  I wonder if De Lima’s recommendation to prosecute P-Noy’s “shooting buddy,” Dept. of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Undersecretary Rico E. Puno, had anything to do with De Lima being booted out?  Didn’t she know that Rico the “Shooter” is untouchable?


It’s chop-chop time…  It’s in the news – Malacañang said, “Any one among President Aquino's Cabinet secretaries may either be sacked or moved to another post come January.”  The buzz is that several executives’ heads are on the chopping block (ugh!), to wit: DILG Secretary Jesse Robredo, DILG Undersecretary Rico E. Puno (I gotta see this to believe it), Customs Commissioner Angelito Alvarez and Presidential Legal Counsel Eduardo de Mesa. The word is that Alvarez is in trouble with some “importers” who are connected to a powerful official inMalacañang. Yup, stepping on “big toes” is the common pitfall of Customs Commissioners. 


It’s an open secret that P-Noy wants to move Jesse Robredo to head an office involved in the welfare of “informal settlers” or squatters, as they’re widely known. That definitely would be a demotion.  The handwriting is on the wall, Jesse.   Beat P-Noy to the punch and say, “I quit!” and move on to better things.  You don’t deserve to be treated like that. 


Wedding bells for P-Noy soon?   If I’m to listen to P-Noy’s youngest sister, Kris Aquino, it looks like Len Lopez is P-Noy’s “new apple of his eye.” Kris announced to the whole world over radio station dzMM that P-Noy has introduced Len to his four sisters – known to some social circles as the “four witches.”  Kris said that Len is “marunong makibagay” (“knows how to get along”) and “friendly to all of us.”  Yup, it’s all or nothing, babe.  They’re like the “Three Musketeers,” one for all and all for one.  Oh, well, que sera sera…   


Are P-Noy and Gloria going to kiss up soon?  Hey, if P-Noy and Len Lopez are going to get married, it would not only unite the Aquinos and the affluent Lopezes of Iloilo, it might also unite the Aquinos and the Arroyos.   ABS-CBN News recently said that Len is said to be the best friend of Luli Arroyo-Bernas, daughter of ex-prez Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.  Just imagine the P-Noy Aquino – Len Lopez wedding entourage with Mike and Gloria Arroyo as principal sponsors or “ninong” and “ninang.”  Surreal, isn’t it?


Kris makes her move… Not to be outshone, Kris Aquino announced that she wants to be governor of Tarlac in 2016 and then explore a possible run for vice president after that.  And then what?  “President Kris Aquino Binay” or “President Kris Aquino Failon” has a nice ring to it.  Kris has been romantically linked lately to Makati City Mayor Junjun Binay, son of Vice President Jejomar “Jojo” Binay.  But she’s also been linked to broadcaster Ted Failon!  Que sera, sera…


However, Kris said, “I will let Noy (P-Noy) go first before I tie the knot.”  Now, that could really be a problem.  First, Kris is still legally married to James Yap unless it’s been annulled. Secondly, P-Noy said, “I won’t give up presidency for love.”  Shucks! Naloko na!


That’s bad news for Len Lopez, Junjun Binay, and Ted Failon.  They’ll have to wait until P-Noy finishes his term in 2016.   At 38 years old, Len would be 44 when P-Noy is ready to tie the knot.  And Kris would be 45 by then.  Does anyone think that Junjun or Ted is going to wait that long to become “First Gentleman” in 2028?  By that time, Kris would be 57.  Ay naku! Kay sira, sira…


Tarsier deposed Gloria… Gloria Macapagal Arroyo survived coup attempts, impeachments, and people power revolts in the nine and a half years she was in power.  Yup, she was too big for all her enemies to bring down.  But, finally, she met her Waterloo – the endangered species tarsier deposed Gloria on the P200 bill.  The diminutive tarsier took the place of Gloria on the face of the bill and Gloria was miniaturized to a tiny speck at the back of the bill, which shows her being sworn in as President in 2001. 


Consuelo de bobo…  In an effort to make Vice President Jejomar “Jojo” Binay feel good, P-Noy is giving him a P200-million pork barrel in 2011 and the Coconut Palace by the Manila Bay as his official residence.  It’s the first time for a vice president to be getting pork.  Before, VPs were only getting chicharon (pork rind) and a bottle of Tanduay Rum from the prez. But the Coconut Palace is something else.  The palace is one of the extravagant projects of Imelda during her heydays.  Now, it’s only good as a “consuelo de bobo” for Jojo. 


Imelda may have lost the Coconut Palace when the Marcos conjugal dictatorship was deposed in 1986 by P-Noy’s mom, Cory Aquino, but she got a “consuelo de bobo” from the “Arroyo Court” (used to be called the Supreme Court) when it recently affirmed the lower court’s ruling that voided the Cory government’s order to sequester the Marcoses’ 17-room rest house in Olot, Tolosa in Leyte province.  This is another blow to the Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG) whose “flawed” case against the Marcos property was the basis of the high court’s decision, which said, “PCGG failed to provide prima facie evidence.”  Talagang bobo!


Garbage in, garbage out… With the recent “Arroyo Court” ruling nullifying the Truth Commission, P-Noy’s new “hot shot” Presidential Assistant for Special Concerns Magdangal Elma issued a press release – without the go-signal of Malacañang! – giving his recommendations on the Truth Commission.  Whoa! That would be enough to raise P-Noy’s hair and cause his blood pressure to hit the roof. 


Elma recommended that P-Noy use the PCGG to investigate Arroyo and her cohorts.  Didn’t Elma know that PCGG filed 900 graft and corruption cases against the Marcoses and lost them all?  With a zero track record against the Marcoses, does PCGG have what it takes to investigate the Arroyos and convince the “Arroyo Court” to rule in its favor?  Like they say,“Garbage in, garbage out.”  And that’s what the “GG” in PCGG seems to stand for.