With just a little over a year left till the Noynoy administration’s term ends, it is now using the government machinery and its resources to salvage Mar Roxas’ faint viability as the ruling Liberal Party (LP) standard-bearer in the May 9, 2016 elections.
Roxas himself has used his position as Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) secretary to gain more visibility and to improve his sagging ratings in voters’ choice for president.
But it is clearly indicated that he is bound to lose even if he used up the billions of pesos in pork barrel funds that President Noynoy and Budget Sec. Butch Abad are said to have embezzled under the illegal Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP).
Roxas has dismally trailed Vice President Jojo Binay, Senator Grace Poe, Manila Mayor Erap Estrada, Sen. Miriam Santiago, Sen. Chiz Escudero and even Davao Mayor Rodrigo Duterte in various polls and surveys, and social media websites have consistently showed Roxas a loser in his bid to succeed Noynoy.
Noynoy’s own satisfaction ratings have plunged in the wake of the whitewash-cover-up on the Mamasapano massacre of 44 Special Action Force (SAF) commandos by the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), which outraged the nation in a way that the massive corruption committed under the DAP did not.
The shameless lies and arrogance of an insensitive and treacherous Commander-in-Chief, who had spent weeks “noynoying” before acting to help super-typhoon Yolanda victims, shattered Roxas’ dream of becoming president.
In the first place, how can Noynoy endorse Roxas after treating him like a mascot by shutting him out of Oplan Exodus and designated suspended policeman Alan Purisima to take charge instead?
It is also clear now that Noynoy’s endorsement of Roxas will be nothing but a “kiss of death.”
So, Malacañang is mulling to fill the posts of the Commission on Election (Comelec) chairman with a rabid Noynoy crony in what some camps allege is designed “to railroad” next year’s presidential polls for Roxas.
Noynoy has deferred the appointment of a Comelec chairman to replace retired Sixto Brillantes, Jr., who signed a new contract with the much-maligned Smartmatic, supplier of the despised precinct count optical scan (PCOS) machines.
This president again would show his lack of delicadeza if he appoints a known political protégé instead of basing his choice on competence and integrity.
But then again, how can an incompetent chief executive, who has lost credibility and the trust of the people, pick a respectable Comelec chairman.
Needless to say, the public must be vigilant against Malacañang’s ill-designs copied from the previous administration.
Fontana villas used as illegal gambling dens
Illegal aliens allegedly nestle in Fontana villas in the former Clark Field in Angeles City and in another casino resort in Laoag City in Ilocos Norte.
My informants say hundreds of Chinese and Koreans of dubious immigration status are staying in the real property owned by Macau-based casino mogul Jack Lam, who is also operating illegal online casino in the said resorts.
Authorities from the Bureau of Immigration (BI) and the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) have rounded up a number of illegal aliens involved in illegal gambling but Lam and officials of the Clark Development Corporation (CDC) allegedly coddle many more of them.
Lam’s Jimei Group allegedly offers the Chinese and Korean nationals “visas” to engage in the online casino business.
Jimei Group is licensed by the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) to operate land-based casino resort.
The group is not licensed by the Cagayan Economic Zone Authority (CEZA).
In exchange for Lam’s and CDC officials’ “protection,” the aliens were asked to buy or lease villa properties worth millions of pesos and these units are used in the unlicensed online gambling operations.
Apart from the protection of corrupt CDC officials, the mafia-like syndicate, who reportedly rake in millions of dollars in profit, also has the “right connections” in Malacañang.
Unlike those duly-licensed by PAGCOR or CEZA, Lam’s associates do not pay any taxes to the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR).
The government, particularly the CDC and Pagcor should now review if it is still worth renewing Jimei Group’s license with its questionable operations in Clark and Laoag.