By Ellson Quismorio
Davao City 1st district Rep. Karlo Nograles can now call himself an “adopted Waray.”
Nograles received this honor after delivering a speech at Leyte 3 Electric Cooperative’s (LEYECO 3) recent Annual General Membership Assembly at the LEYECO 3 Gymnasium, LEYECO 3 Compound in Tunga, Leyte.
It was LEYECO 3 Board President Cornelio Brazil who dubbed the legislator as such to the approval of almost 10,000 member-consumer-owners of the electric cooperative (EC) who attended the event.
“From this day onwards, you shall be known as Karlo Nograles, adopted son of the Warays,” Brazil said.
As Brazil announced this, he unsheathed the sword named “Goodbye Jaro” and tapped the three-term congressman’s left and right shoulders a la the accolade in a knighthood ceremony. The attendees gave the latter a standing ovation.
The sword was later handed to Nograles by the EC official, who explained the significance of the ceremonial weapon.
“Dalawa ang sementeryo sa Jaro, Leyte, magkabilang dulo ng bayan. Kapag pumasok ka at ayaw sayo ng mga siga at matapang na Waray, hindi ka na makakalabas ng buhay. Kaya yun ang modern na tawag sa espada na yun. Yun kasi ang madalas na ginagamit ng mga Waray pag meron silang gustong patayin na kaaway,” said the Leyte native.
(There are two cemeteries in Jaro, Leyte, on opposite sides of the town. It is said that if you enter the town and the brave Waray dislike you, you will not be able to get out of Jaro alive. This is how the sword got its name, because often this is what Warays used when they want to kill their enemies.)
”Ikaw amon gin aadopt na Waray-Waray, yana usa ka na ha amon, usa ka na nga Waray-Waray. (We are now adopting you as a true Waray-Waray. Now you are one of us. You are now a Waray-Waray),” Brazil further said.
Nograles, chairman of the House Committee on Appropriations, served as guest of honor of the event.
He stressed in his speech that ECs should be recognized for their efforts in energizing the countryside and bringing much-needed development to the regions and providing economic opportunities for “probinsyanos (province dwellers).”
The Davao lawmaker also lauded the LEYECO 3 leadership for turning around the financial fortunes of the EC, transforming it from an economically unviable EC into one with a net worth of nearly P350 million.
The pro-probinsyano congressman has been an outspoken supporter of ECs as well as the Duterte administration’s campaign to complete the electrification of the country by 2022, and has consistently supported calls to properly finance this effort.
Nograles is a rumored senatorial aspirant in next year’s mid-term elections. He is President Rodrigo Duterte’s nephew.