Time to say goodbye to those who served the public well

Published June 5, 2022, 7:06 AM

by Deedee Siytangco

Angle Thoughts

So sad to say goodbye to outstanding senators, like Senators Frank Drilon, Dick Gordon, Sonny Trillanes, Kiko Pangilinan, VP Leni Robredo and my mayor Yorme Isko Moreno Domagoso. We will miss their zeal and dedication to serve.

To those back in the Senate, please serve your constituents well and to the neophytes, we are willing to give you a chance, so please study and learn!

I was born and raised in the city of Manila, in what was once the best residential area in Paco near the parish church, the fire station, and a historic park for the victims of a plague that hit the city in the early 1900s.

Our street was lined with giant trees that shaded the pavement and made walking to church, park, and market a delight. The trees are long gone and so are the bungalows of my illustrious neighbors. My maternal grandfather, Dr. Gabriel Intengan, was one of the esteemed doctors of medicine and he counted the creative MaMonLuk, who had the popular restaurant as his “godchild.”

I have “survived ” several mayors—Ramon Bagatsing, Lito Atienza, Alfredo Lim, and Joseph Erap Estrada.  And, I can honestly say, I hate saying “Goodbye, I hate to see you go” to a stellar mayor, Francisco “Isko” Moreno Domagoso, who should have stayed as my city mayor for another two terms!

There, I have said it and while there is no turning back, it was his decision to run for president. I can only thank him for what he did for my city in the short three years he governed it.

Yorme for this Manileña was a star performer who honestly tried to uplift our then deteriorating city to greater heighs with better health care services newer public hospitals and parks, education benefits, enlightened infrastructure revival of historical monuments and edifices, a true vision for the nation’s capital city.

More important, he had the guts to follow through on his dreams and  decisions.  He became city mayor and immediately was a “rock star,” who attracted diplomats, businessmen, investors, ordinary citizens of the tired city of Manila to cheer and help him build a better city!

Yorme became a media superstar in local politics and soon even on the national scene. His style of governance became the envy of other city chiefs. Sure, he might have made some mistakes (like selling off Divisoria market) but overall, he kept his promise—the city’s monuments, parks, patches of greenery, and other public places were spruced up (regularly too), making them all truly for the people, all the time.

Which is why it is so hard to put on a brave face and bid Yorme Isko goodbye! Thank you for serving as our mayor for a term! You deserve the privacy you will go back to and I know you wife and children will be happy you will have all the time again for them. Your successor, Dr. Honey Lacuna, has been tested and she has been a true partner as your vice-mayor over the last three years.

To mark the celebration of National Heritage Month (NHM), the Philippine Postal Corporation (Post Office) has issued a commemorative stamp honoring cartoonist and National Artist for Visual Arts Larry Alcala, featuring his well-known “Slice of Life” cartoon series.

“His comic strips gave us a glimpse of Filipino lives in the wittiest and meaningful way. His comics became known for giving its readers the task of finding Mr. Alcala’s face hidden in his illustrations”,”said postmaster general Norman Fulgencio.

There is an ongoing exhibit of the stamps and cartoons of the late great Alcala at the Aura in BGC. In 1988, the “Slice of Life” cartoon series received the Best in Humor Award. It was cited for helping to keep alive the Filipino’s ability to laugh at themselves in the midst of adversities through a combination of art and humor.

Mahalaga po ang mga selyong ito dahil stamps are our window to the world, showcasing the rich history and culture of our country. Like our own National Artist Larry Alcala, the Post Office recognizes Filipino talents and achievers and encourages more Filipinos to do their best, to give joy, inspiration, and pride to the nation, and make a greater contribution in the improvement of Philippine economy and the nation,” Fulgencio said.

I met Larry Alcala when I was tasked to ask him to do instructional comic strips of “Asyong Aksaya” to encourage the public not to waste any resources. He was enthusiastic, readily diving into Asyong’s humorous lifetsyle while imparting the lesson against wastefulness!