By: Modesto Palacios Sa-onoy
BEFORE I tackle the subject, let me share several opinions that came my way during the last weekend that have relevance to the issue at hand but I will not link them to the topic for the moment. We shall wait for developments in this regard because if UNA is not saved, then the information becomes significantly relevant to the demise of UNA and in fact, can explain why the UNA died the unwanted death.
In the meantime they shall remain in the closet as it were.
One of these came from 12 time zones away that suspect why there is the move to put Gov. Freddie Marañon on the defensive.
The other information came from within our time zone but from different places with the same conclusion on why there are forces that are putting up an opposition against Marañon and within UNA.
The opinions link the Capitol lot coveted by SM to the “plot.”
Everybody wants UNA to survive, most politicians of the province are telling media, but the actuations of some tend to undercut it.
There is hope that the break-up will come to pass but this means that one of the contending parties – that of Marañon and that of Vive Governor Genaro Alvarez, must give way. Which one? Both want to be governor but we can only have one.
Alvarez insists on the “process” as does Rep. Alfredo Benitez and I think everybody wants the process to succeed, but which process should be followed?
Alvarez has junked the idea of the equity of the incumbent rule and that the old system of six congressmen, the governor, the vice governor and former Danding Cojuangco should prevail.
If we use this process, then we can count three for Alvarez (with Rep. Ledesma and Mercedes Alvarez) plus Cojuangco that Alvarez said had given him the blessing. Marañon can count only for three – himself Rep. Alfredo Marañon III and Alejandro Mirasol.
We don’t know which way Rep. Benitez and Ferrer will swing but the possibility that Ferrer will go for to Marañon is high. Benitez is a question but his actuations point to Alvarez.
The possibility of Marañon losing out under this process is high.
On the other hand, Marañon wants another process. He wants the mayors to have a hand in the choice of the provincial standard bearer. With most mayors expressing support for him, his chances are higher. In fact he will clinch it, unless the “allowance” is more effective in convincing some mayors than saving the alliance.
So both Marañon and Alvarez want a process, but each has a different process.
Alvarez has already declared his reservations whether he would abide by the process that is not in accordance with his own idea of the right process, that means, the process that Marañon wants.
The same thing can be expected of Benitez. Will he, however, accept the process as proposed by Marañon or will he insist on the one set by Alvarez?
If the two camps remain adamant with their own process, then the goat of UNA is cut.
So far only Marañon has made a categorical statement that he will run, regardless of the opposition. On the other hand, Alvarez appears unsure so that there is room for him to get out without losing face.
Marañon can back out only at the risk of political suicide. He cannot stand down without getting out of politics altogether as he shall have lost his moral ascendancy and credibility.
And so UNA is faced with a dilemma that is difficult to resolve. Can it survive?
The repercussions of the non-resolution of the UNA conflict can be disastrous to some. It can cause a lot of realignments in the city and town politics. The hegemony of the UNA candidates shall be lost and encourage others to do battle.
In the sixth district, for instance, the group identified with Arles and Britanico families will face the Alvarez clan which will have to fight in the provincial, district and municipal level. Generals will always tell you that fighting in two fronts is extremely risky; fighting in three would be a disaster.
The murder charge against Mayor Paul Alvarez is not about to fly way before the elections, in facts, it can explode as the National Bureau of Investigation appears cocksure of its case.
There is also talk of one good candidate material for congressman in the 6th district. He is close to President Aquino. Some people will cross the traditional line even that of the Zayco’s if this guy runs there against Rep. Alvarez.
The unity of UNA is therefore crucial not only for the 6th district and other areas. Some mayors are already in tenterhooks. Their survival and continue dominance of UNA dictate it must remain intact.