OMG! (Ombudsman Merceditas Gutierrez)

publicmarketbaguio1 It’s March!
Can you believe it? It’s already the third month of 2009! What does that mean? Graduation day, summer, beach, bodies, and of course, fire! March is Fire Prevention Month. And to usher in the strict observance of Fire Prevention Month, arsonists had to torch the Baguio City Public Market.

merci1 Under Fire
An impeachment complaint has been filed against Ombudsman Merceditas Gutierrez. I know what you’re thinking. What?! Atenean na naman?!

A day after an impeachment complaint was filed against her, Ombudsman Merceditas Gutierrez held a press conference. Yup, she faced the media. That was really unusual… because normally, Ateneans who are under fire run to St. Luke’s first.

baraquel_salonga As the Philippine Daily Inquirer described it, former senator Jovito Salonga of the Liberal Party, “came out of retirement” just to file the impeachment complaint against Ombudsman Merceditas Gutierrez. Judging from her reaction though, looks like even Ninoy Aquino’s resurrection will not make her quit.

Former senator Jovito Salonga of the Liberal Party “came out of retirement” to file an impeachment case against Ombudsman Merceditas Gutierrez… to which the feisty Ombudsman said, “I’ll never quit my post… kahit si Mar Roxas pa ang mag-come out!”

Press Secretary Cerge Remonde insists Malacañang is keeping a hands off stance on the Gutierrez case. To prove it, they all went to Boracay and enjoyed the beach while Gutierrez faced her accusers.

Top 5 Things to Tell Ombudsman Merceditas Gutierrez That Could Possibly Make Her Quit

5: “If you resign now, we’ll let you go to Belo. But if you stay, we’ll forcibly bring you to Calayan. Now, who do you wanna look like?”

4: “St. Luke’s Medical Center has just released an advisory. Kapag may nangyari daw sa ‘yo during an impeachment trial, never ka nilang i-a-admit! So quit now!”

3: “Jose ‘Joseph’ Estrada, Jose De Venecia, Jose Miguel Arroyo, Jocelyn ‘Jocjoc’ Bolante, Celso De Los Angeles. Do you seriously want to be their muse?”

2: “Aalis ka ba sa puwesto o mumurahin ka ni Mar Roxas in public?”

And the No. 1 thing to tell Ombudsman Merceditas Gutierrez that could possibly make her quit…

1: “Maawa ka naman kay Senator Salonga. Mag-ootsenta’y nuwebe na ‘yong matanda. Isipin mo na lang tatay mo siya. Isipin mo na lang anak ka niya. Isipin mo na lang nakikiusap ang ama sa anak. Isipin mo na lang huling pakiusap na niya ito. Isipin mo na lang last chance mo na ito para mapaligaya siya. At isipin mo na lang isasadula ng “Maalala Mo Kaya” ang buhay mo. Kakaawaan ka ng publiko. Makikisimpatiya sila sa ‘yo. At muling babango ang pangalan mo. So ano? Magreresign ka ba o hindi?!? Punyeta!”

GMA in Boracay gma_bora
President Arroyo was in Boracay the other day. Or as Albay Governor Joey Salceda would say it, “bitch on a beach.”

Resado In the News Again
Embattled State Prosecutor John Resado insisted that the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency did not conduct a buy-bust operation on the group of suspected drug dealers known as the Alabang Boys. Relatives of the Alabang Boys described Resado’s latest testimony as, “honest,” “credible, “ and “worth 1.6 million.”

Have you heard the rumor? The Alabang Boys have fired their lawyers. You know why? Because the boys just realized State Prosecutor John Resado was doing a much better job compared to them.

Euro Generaldlp1
“Euro general” and former PNP comptroller Eliseo De La Paz has strongly denied rumors he had been implicated in the fertilizer fund scam. The rumor was apparently fueled by a tabloid headline that said: “Ex-comptroller De La Paz, nag-abono!”

_________
“Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?”
(Who will guard the guards themselves?)
~ From Satire VI of Roman Poet Juvenal

REALITY SHOWS

De La Paz: Mea Culpa
Retired PNP comptroller Eliseo De La Paz appeared before the Senate Saturday and took full responsibility for the infamous Moscow incident. De La Paz says “it is a lapse on my part.” From requesting and approving 10 million pesos, to carrying the huge amount to Russia, to not declaring the said amount, to issuing conflicting statements as to the money’s real purpose – everything was his fault. In fact, De La Paz was too willing to take all the blame, he almost owned up to the fertilizer fund scam.

Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago said De La Paz’s refusal to tell the truth and reveal the role of his superiors in the fund mess was a blow to the country’s efforts to get rid of corruption. And an even bigger blow to her planned revenge on Ronaldo Puno.

Obama’s Mother-in-Law
Reports say US President-elect Barack Obama is moving into the White House with his family including his mother-in-law. Yup, his mother-in-law. No Philippine president has ever done that… although Joseph Estrada did plan to bring one to Malacañang. He just couldn’t decide which one.

BF’s Posters
Reports say militants vandalized MMDA Chairman Bayani Fernando’s posters in Quezon City. They put a G between BAYA and NI… incurring the ire of actress Susan Roces.

Inspired by BF’s Win
After Bayani Fernando’s half-expected win on “Celebrity Duets,” more and more politicians are rumored to be joining (some were invited) reality competitions:
Jinggoy Estrada on “Scare Tactics”
Lito Lapid on “Average Joe”
Jamby Madrigal will try to pull off a Paris Hilton in the local version of “The Simple Life.”
– Retired PNP comptroller Eliseo De La Paz is reviewing for “Who Wants to be a Millionaire?”
President Arroyo, Ombudsman Merceditas Gutierrez, Loren Legarda, Jamby Madrigal, and the wife of Eliseo De La Paz will be featured on “Girls Behaving Badly.”
Tessie Aquino-Oreta is training hard now for “Dancing With the Stars.”
Noynoy Aquino might do “The Bachelor.”
John Osmeña might do “The Bachelorette.”
Jose De Venecia was actually invited to be a contestant on “The Biggest Loser.”
And finally, Ping Lacson has reportedly bought a new gun in preparation for his stint on “Kakasa Ka ba sa Grade 5?”

Have a great week ahead!

_________
Few people have the imagination for reality.
~Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

SCANDALICIOUS

Postscript to the Senate Probe
Senators found it particularly unbelievable and incredible that Jocjoc Bolante alone (as he claimed) could have caused the release of P728 million. The Senate has ordered a thorough review of Bolante’s appointment papers. They wanted to make sure he was appointed “undersecretary” and not “president.”

Journalists observed how cool Jocjoc Bolante was when he appeared before the Senate. Still, he was no match for Jinggoy Estrada who was in his usual “saksakan ng hangin” element during the hearing.

Guess who came at the Bolante hearing? Jun Lozada. Yup, the favorite witness of the La Salle community was even caught by tv cameras smiling. You know why? Because three more months with the La Salle Brothers, and he’ll be allowed to officiate his first mass.

Top 5 Reasons Why It Took Some Time Before Retired PNP Director for Comptrollership Eliseo De La Paz Could Surrender to the Senate

5: His wife has just finished hiding vital pieces of evidence: the Louis Vuittons, Pradas, Dolce & Gabbanas, and Manolo Blahniks she purchased during the Moscow shopping spree.

4: He waited for another scandal to break open so the public would forget about the “Euro generals.” Unfortunately though, the only controversy that broke out after the “Moscow mess” was the dismissal of Cristy Fermin from “The Buzz.”

3: It took weeks before his superiors at the PNP & the DILG could decide whether to use the term “cash advance,” “contingency fund” or “intelligence fund” during the next hearing. Finally, they settled for… “bahala ka na.”

2. For weeks, he “wished” he had chest pains, esophagitis, gastritis, ulcers, and even a sleeping disorder but doctors at the St. Luke’s Medical Center repeatedly said, “No sir, you’re totally healthy. We cannot admit you.”

And the No. 1 reason why it took some time before retired PNP comptroller Eliseo De La Paz could surrender to the Senate…

1: He had to wait for the Senate hearing on Jocjoc Bolante to conclude. And after watching the proceedings, he realized, “If Jocjoc survived Jinggoy, I will survive Miriam.”

________
And nobody lies as much as the indignant do.
–Friedrich Nietzsche

LAST WORDS

BEFORE HE TOOK his last breath, Theodore Roosevelt uttered, “Put out the light.” George Bernard Shaw murmured, “I want to sleep.” And shortly before his fatal car crash, James Dean was quoted to have said, “My fun days are over.” Locally, how could showbiz writers forget the infamous suicide note of ‘80s bold star Stella Strada? Her final words? “This is a crazy planets!” Here’s an updated version of my blog post last year titled…

Top 12 Last Words and Deathbed Statements of Local Celebrities

12: Bro. Mike Velarde: “Gagaleeeeng! Lalakas! Gagaleng! Lalak… uk…uk…ugh!”

11: Sen. Francis Pangilinan: “Hiwalay kung hiwalay!”

10: John Lapus: “Doc, totoo bang mamamatay na ako? Yes or No? Don’t Lie to Me!

9: Nora Aunor: (Hallucinating) “Ding ang bato! Ihagis mo sa akin ang bato!”

8: Sen. Manuel Villar: “Cynthia… sa araw ng aking libing, gusto ko idaan n’yo ang aking funeral procession… sa C5!”

7: Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano: “Arf! Arf! Arf!”

6: Sen. Jamby Madrigal: (While gasping for her last breath) “A-a-attorney, pppa-pakibago ng la-la-last will and tetes-testament ko. I have me-me-made a de-de-decision a-a-attorney. Nobody de-dedeserves to inherit my ma-ma-money except – for myself! Akin lahat ang mana!”

5: Joseph Estrada: “Hik!”

4: Ret. PNP comptroller Eliseo De La Paz: “Sweetheart, ‘yong makukulektang abuloy, paki-convert sa euro huh.”

3: Jocjoc Bolante: “I am prepared to face death… in the proper forum.”

2: Cong. Jose De Venecia: “I swear! This is it na talaga! I’m now ready to tell the truth no matter who gets hurt! May oras pa ba?” (And then he dies)

And the No. 1 last words and deathbed statement of local celebrities…

1: President Arroyo: (in her deathbed, when doctors asked how she felt) “My respiratory fundamentals are very strong. I have become more resilient amid the global health crisis. I will survive this.”

See also: Deathbed Declarations of Contemporary Politicians and Celebrities

Here Comes the Bribe, er Bride

Reports say Luli Arroyo will wed her banker boyfriend next year.

__________
Never take life too seriously; after all, no one gets out of it alive.
— Elbert Hubbard

IT’S JOC TIME!


Jocjoc Bolante is Back
Former agriculture undersecretary Jocelyn Bolante is back in the country. Upon his arrival, the very prompt eight-member team from the Office of the Senate Sergeant-at-Arms read the Upper Chamber’s order for his arrest. The first line of the arrest order reads, “We, the Senators of the Republic of the Philippines, fooled by Eliseo De La Paz last week, vow not to be fooled for the second consecutive week.”

Former agriculture undersecretary Jocelyn Bolante arrived Tuesday night. In his arrival statement, Jocjoc said, “Now that I am back, I assure you that I will answer any and all accusations at the proper forum. I am ready to face the issues and all the malicious accusations against me.” He then denied rumors that ex-PNP comptroller Eliseo De La Paz wrote that statement for him.

When he is discharged from the hospital, Jocjoc Bolante will be detained at the Senate. A Philippine Star report says the detention room has air-conditioning unit, a bed, cable TV, electric fan, conference table, book shelf, white board, single bed, and two sofas. Nope, we’re not describing Claudio Teehankee Jr’s cell at the New Bilibid Prisons.

The Quezon City Police District has deployed its personnel to provide round-the-clock security for former agriculture undersecretary Jocelyn “Joc-joc” Bolante. The Senate has also sent eight men to protect him. Can anyone please check if there’s any security guy left for UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon?

An Inquirer report says former agriculture undersecretary Jocjoc Bolante’s house in the posh Ayala Alabang village showed no sign that his homecoming would be festive. The uninhabited 80 million peso-mansion of the alleged architect of the “fertilizer fund scam” is adorned by ornamental plants, palm trees… and a couple of scarecrows.

Unconfirmed reports say the St. Luke’s Medical Center has released its latest medical bulletin on the health condition of former agriculture undersecretary Jocjoc Bolante. His blood test showed unusual quantities of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium (N-P-K).

Rodolfo “Jun” Lozada and his nun friends from La Salle wanted to visit Jocjoc Bolante at St. Luke’s Medical Center but the security was really tight. So tight that it’s reportedly even tighter than Lozada’s nun friends.

Like Hollywood’s notorious paparazzi, dozens of media men and women swooped in on former agriculture undersecretary Jocelyn Bolante when he arrived at the NAIA last night. Next to Chris Tiu, Bolante is perhaps the most talked-about Atenean at this moment.

Finally!
Jocjoc Bolante has finally been returned. We have waited so long for this event to happen. To give you an idea how long we have waited, when Bolante fled the country, he looked like First Gentleman Mike Arroyo. When he arrived, he looked more like Joker Arroyo.

Jocjoc Bolante is finally back. We have waited so long for this event to happen. To give you an idea how long it was, lawyer Harry Roque’s waist line was still 27 when it all started.

Jocjoc Bolante is back guys. Finally, he’s back. We have waited so long for this event to happen. To give you an idea how long it has been, the price of gasoline was at the 25 pesos per liter level when he left.

Jocjoc Bolante is finally back. We have waited so long for this moment to happen. To give you an idea how long it has been: when Jocjoc Bolante left the country, Jose De Venecia was still GMA’s caddie when she played golf in China.

Jocjoc Bolante is finally back. We have waited so long for this moment to arrive. To give you an idea how long it has been: when Jocjoc Bolante left the country, Rustom Padilla was still straight.

Elsewhere

Check out the Guitar Hero World Tour advertisement featuring Michael Phelps, Tony Hawk, Alex Rodriguez and of course, THE Kobe Bryant.

One Flu Over the Cute-cute’s Nest
The Professional Heckler is currently down with flu.
_________
He who holds the ladder is as bad as the thief.
— German Proverb

ALIBIS


The “Euro Generals” Controversy
First, retired PNP director for comptrollership Eliseo De La Paz said the 6.9 million pesos worth of undeclared cash he was caught carrying in Moscow was “a cash advance.” DILG Sec. Ronaldo Puno then claimed it was part of the PNP delegation’s “contingency fund.” Came the Senate hearing last Thursday where PNP Director General Jesus Versoza denied having knowledge of both the source and purpose of the money. A day later though, Versoza was saying it was actually intended for the purchase of intelligence equipment. That doesn’t stop there though. Exclusive! The Professional Heckler has obtained a copy of Puno and Versoza’s prepared joint statements on the Moscow mess to be released daily for the rest of the week:
Monday: “One of the generals’ wives has cancer and the money was for her surgery. How could you be so heartless people? Understand her situation.”

Tuesday: “Remember the recent report about an unidentified Davaoeño who won the 130 million peso-jackpot in super lotto? That’s actually him! Oo, si De La Paz ‘yon! The money’s part of the windfall.”

Wednesday: “The media got it all wrong. It’s their flawed story that’s to blame. Yes, De La Paz was carrying cash but it’s not 105,000 euro. It’s actually 105,000 Japanese yen. That’s a measly 54 thousand 603 pesos.”

Thursday: “The money was planted by Communist sympathizers in Moscow. Definitely, a black propaganda diabolically designed by the CPP-NPA against the military.”

Friday: “Generals in Moscow? What the hell are you talking about? They did not leave the country!”

The “Euro Generals” II
The Senate committee on foreign relations has found the Philippine delegation to the 77th Interpol Assembly in Russia guilty. That was perhaps the fastest Senate probe yet. The only thing faster was PNP Chief Versoza’s change of statements.

JDV and Impeachment
Cong. Jose De Venecia repeatedly refused to endorse his son, Jose “Joey” De Venecia III’s impeachment complaint against President Arroyo because of delicadeza. On Saturday however, October 25, he held a press conference to announce his endorsement of the complaint because his “conscience” got the better of him. In other words, nakunsensya siya. Hindi pala niya kayang magpanggap na meron s’yang delicadeza.

JDV and Impeachment II
Days ago, Cong. Jose De Venecia said no, he wouldn’t endorse the impeachment complaint against President Arroyo. Today, De Venecia is saying yes, he’s endorsing it. If JDV didn’t run for congress, he’ll be the perfect PNP chief.

Niño Muhlach on Liezel Martinez
Actor Niño Muhlach has confirmed rumors his first cousin Liezel Martinez has breast cancer. Niño expressed confidence she will overcome the disease. The former child wonder also mentioned his closeness to his Ate Liezel saying they have so many things in common. Just like now, Liezel is under medication; Niño is on drugs.

__________
If one cannot invent a really convincing lie, it is often better to stick to the truth.
– Angela Thirkell

ETHICAL

NTC vs. ABS-CBN
For airing an interview with wanted MILF leader Kumander Bravo, the National Telecommunications Commission filed a complaint to the KBP against ABS-CBN. The NTC says the network violated the KBP’s Broadcast Code of 2007 particularly the provision that states, “”broadcast facilities shall not be used or allowed to be used for advocating the overthrow of government by force or violence,” and “the broadcast of materials which tend to incite treason, rebellion, sedition or create civil disorder or disturbance is prohibited.” This marks the first time NTC officials filed such a complaint against ABS-CBN… which could only mean one thing: they haven’t actually listened to DZMM’s “Tambalang Failon and Sanchez.”

NTC vs. ABS-CBN II
The NTC filed a complaint to the KBP against ABS-CBN for airing an interview with rogue MILF leader Kumander Bravo who is wanted by the military. But ABS-CBN News head Maria Ressa insists that the Kumander Bravo interview is a legitimate and ethical story and that ABS-CBN will not suspend the airing of his interviews… unless he starts talking about Nadia Montenegro’s love life.

NTC vs. ABS-CBN III
ABS-CBN successfully located and interviewed rogue MILF commander Bravo who has a 10 million-peso bounty on his head and is wanted by the Armed Forces of the Philippines. Outraged military officials who watched the interview vowed to intensify the info gathering and massive manhunt for Bravo in the Lanao Provinces, and soon at the ABS-CBN newsroom.

Meralco’s Power Rate Hike
Amid difficult times, the Lopez-owned Manila Electric Company or Meralco implemented a 36 percent power rate increase. Militant leader Rafael Mariano described the increase as “deceitful.” Cong. Mikey Arroyo believed it was “unjustified.” ABS-CBN News said it was “legitimate and ethical.”

“Euro Generals” Controversy
Retired Philippine National Police director for comptrollership Eliseo De La Paz underwent normal arrival procedures at the NAIA when he arrived Tuesday. Airport manager Angel Atutubo said De La Paz was not treated as a VIP and not a single marshal was assigned to escort him. Atutubo was understandably being careful… because the last time he escorted someone out of the airport, the La Salle Brothers accused him of kidnapping!

“Euro Generals” Controversy II
This has yet to be confirmed but retired PNP director for comptrollership Eliseo De La Paz will reportedly bring to the Senate what’s left of the undeclared 6.9 million pesos cash he was caught carrying in Moscow. To be sure it’s the real stuff, Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago wanted to hire canines to sniff out the money. But Sen. Panfilo Lacson said there’s no need for a K9 unit… as long as Senators Alan Peter and Joker Arroyo are there.

“Euro Generals” Controversy III
Retired PNP director for comptrollership Eliseo De La Paz and DILG Sec. Ronaldo Puno have conflicting claims with regard to the 6.9 million pesos worth of undeclared cash De La Paz carried while in Russia. De La Paz said the money was a “cash advance” while Puno claimed it was a “contingency” fund. But De La Paz’ wife, Maria Fe who traveled with him to Russia said, “I couldn’t really tell whether it was a cash advance or a contingency fund because when my husband handed me the money, he just said, “Sweetheart, ingatan mo ‘to… pang-shopping!”

Jocjoc to be Deported
US authorities will deport former agriculture undersecretary Jocjoc Bolante before the end of October. But Bolante’s legal counsel Ira Azulay refused to reveal the exact return date saying, “We’re concerned about his safety.” That’s actually a valid concern… because if he gets “kidnapped” when he arrives at the NAIA, he cannot expect support from the La Salle Brothers. He’s Atenean.

Jocjoc to be Deported 2
Lawyer Harry Roque is all over the news again announcing with certainty that former agriculture undersecretary Jocjoc Bolante will be deported in 24 hours. I know for a fact that Roque’s a UP professor (and I admire him) but I didn’t know he’s with the US Department of Homeland Security.

__________
Good people do not need laws to tell them to act responsibly, while bad people will find a way around the laws.
– Plato

RELAX, SEE A MOVIE

Top 20 Movie Casting Choices That Were Meant to Be 2

20: ex-Sen. Ramon Revilla Sr.: Staying Alive

19: Vicki Belo & Ellen Lising: House of Wax

18: DOJ Sec. Raul Gonzales: The Jerk

17: Sen. Antonio Trillanes: Chasing Liberty

16: Tim Yap/DJ Montano: Close Encounters of the Third Kind

15: Mrs. Rose Flaminiano: Super Size Me

14: The Gucci Gang with the special participation of Ms. Nora Aunor: Romancing the Stone

13: Shell, Petron, and Caltex: Liar Liar

12: ABS-CBN News’ Maria Ressa: The Punisher

11: Nadia Montenegro: Grease

10: Doña Mary Ejercito: 10,000 BC

9: Rodolfo “Jun” Lozada: The Man Who Knew Too Much

8: Sen. Lito Lapid: Artificial Intelligence

7: ex-Sen. John Osmeña: Girl, Interrupted

6: (tie) MILF’s Kumander Bravo and Umbra Kato: Psycho and Jose “Joey” De Venecia III: V for Vendetta

5: Panfilo Lacson and Jamby Madrigal: Sister Act

4: Sen. Manuel Villar: Two for the Road

3: Sens. Loren Legarda & Edgardo Angara: An Inconvenient Truth

2: Claudio Teehankee Jr.: While You Were Sleeping

And the No. 1 movie casting choice that was meant to be…

1: Sen. Francis Pangilinan: Unfaithful

See also The Top 20 Movie Casting Choices That Were Meant to Be