THE following is culled from William M. Esposo (As I Wreck This Chair/The Philippine Star) May 31, 2012 column. We are reprinting it for it touches on a local politician that figured prominently in the Corona impeachment trial:
For most people, Ilocos Norte Representative Rudy Fariñas came into our consciousness when he circulated a Betamax video of actress Vivian Velez and him — where they stripped into their birthday clothes, among other things they did on and off camera. Last Monday, Rudy Fariñas outdid himself by stripping now convicted Chief Justice Renato C. Corona in front of a national television audience.
Now popularly called the Palusot (excuse) Rudy Fariñas Prosecution closing argument for convicting CJ Corona, he spoke mostly in Filipino and in a language that registered well with Juan dela Cruz. He managed to give Juan dela Cruz the complex issues of the impeachment trial in easy to digest bite sizes. The closing argument of Fariñas had all the hallmarks of effective mass communications. It was crafted according to the appreciation level of Juan dela Cruz.
He compared what Corona declared as assets in his SALN (Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth) and did not declare. In his SALN, 98 percent or P180 million of his cash assets were not declared by Corona. Only P3.5 million of his cash assets were declared. That led to a conclusion of an attempt to conceal assets. He exposed inaccuracies in Corona’s claim to having traded in dollars. He showed how ridiculous Corona’s claim was of having borrowed money from his wife’s firm — why pay interest when you have the cash.
Earlier projected as an odd-man-out in the Prosecution panel, Fariñas turned out to be the saving grace for the disappointing closing argument made earlier by Lead Prosecutor Niel Tupas. Fariñas gave you the impression that he meant to talk to Juan dela Cruz. Tupas gave you the impression that he just loves to hear the sound of his squeaky voice.
The media tracking of last Monday’s closing arguments clearly reflected the celebrity that Rudy Fariñas had gained. Farinas logged an 87.77 percent approval by those who followed the penultimate day of the impeachment trial. Only 12.23 percent disapproved what he asserted. In contrast, Niel Tupas logged a disapproval rating of 80.53 percent versus a shameful 19.47 percent approval rating.
Considering that the prosecution enjoys majority of public support, this is a clear demonstration of the lack of quality of Niel Tupas. On verbal communications, he does not create empathy — sounding more like an entry in a declamation contest. He’s no better in non-verbal because his small, lean frame tends to reinforce the impression that he is of substandard quality.
So impressive was the impact of the closing argument of Rudy Fariñas that Defense lawyer Dennis Manalo did not track online because Fariñas reactions were still swamping the Internet. Manalo had the bad luck of speaking after Fariñas. Manalo may have also failed to make a positive impression because he too — like Tupas — appeared like an entry to a high school declamation contest and the fact that he was espousing the unpopular view.
THE public is speculating as to when the bulk water supply project of the Metro Iloilo Water District will commence. What is clear is the fact that it has been delayed for months now. What is the problem with the consortium led by Rogelio Florete of Bombo Radyo?
MIWD has yet to divulge to the public the contract it signed with the consortium. But source say the contract states that the consortium will have to pay MIWD for the delays. The longer the delay the bigger the penalty. How much? Sources say it is quite hefty. Is this the reason why some parts of the consortium are mulling to sell their share of the contract to a willing big time buyer?
Second class citizens still
I DON’T cover presidential visits because the local media remains an afterthought during press conferences, if ever one is held. Manila journalists, inspite of their daily coverage of Malacañang and proximity to the highest official of the land, still jostle out the community press in rare presidential presscons. Community journalists would like to ask the President’s position and sentiments on local concerns but we are hardly given space and time. Maybe these local concerns are of no consequence to the Palace and its keepers.