By ROGER M. BALANZA
Vice Mayor Digong
July 6, 2010. First regular session of the 16th Davao City Council. Vice Mayor Rodrigo R. Duterte, presiding. Time: 2:30 PM.
After the preliminaries—Invocation, National Anthem—members of the 26-man city council elects its officers.
Councilor Immanuel Galicia, the elected floor leader, takes the rostrum, and addresses Vice Mayor Duterte, the presiding officer.
The honorable Mr. President…..
Vice Mayor Duterte cuts him down.
“Sir Nonoy. I am not President Noynoy. You have not been reading the papers. Did you miss the headline story of the Sunstar Davao issue of July 1, 2010. I beg your indulgence, Nonoy. This is the first and the last that a member of this council will read a paper in this session hall. But it is important, so, will you allow me, Sir Nonoy?”
“It is on the jump page on Page 17, and reporter Jade Z. Zaldivar wrote: “Duterte said the first thing he would do in his power as the Vice Mayor would be to stop the usage of the word “Honorable” in the course of proceedings of the City Council.”
“Mahilasan ko. I find it arrogant. It’s not because we don’t have honor, it’s that we should not call ourselves honorable. Let other people call you honorable.”
“Are you not reading Sunstar, Sir Nonoy? What have you been reading, the Mindanao Insider Daily, the paper of Nograles?”
“By the way, this is also what I said and I stand by this beautiful reporter of Sunstar—“Kanang ibutang nimo mismo sa gawas sa imong purtahan kanang ?@@#$%*&^@ Honorable, ngil-ad tan-awon!”
“Tawaga lang ko ug Mister, Sir Nonoy. And this applies to every member of this council.”
“I would not care if you address me with whatever name you wish. Kanang mga batabata ni Nograles dinhi, I don’t give a f—cking s—it or a f—cking nose if you call me DDS chief or thief, basta ayaw lang ko tawaga honorable. Sila councilor Joanne Bonguyan, Rachel Zozobrado ug Marissa Salvador, ayaw lang apil si Pilar, they can call me “darling” and I would love it.”
“Just call me Mister, Mister Rody, Mister Duterte, in the same way that I would address you Mister Floorleader as Mister Galicia, Sir Nonoy.”
“Klaro na ba ta? Okay proceed.”
Floor leader Galicia is dumbstruck!
“Ahhhh, Mister Duterte, sir, Mister Rody Sir, I think this should be in the house rules.”
“In this house, I rule and make the rules, so it is in the rules, my dear Sir Nonoy,” the vice mayor said.
Councilor Jimmy Dureza raises his hands and takes the mike.
“Point of clarification, lang, Mister Duterte. Since you won’t give a hoot about addresses here, can I have the privilege to call you Bay Rody or Digong?” Dureza asks.
No probs. Bay Rody? It sounds like Ato ni Bay. Okay lang. Digong? Bahakhak katawa ani si Soleng!.
Thank you, Bay!
What’s our agenda, Sir Nonoy?
I would like somebody to move for adjournment.
Way problema. It’s good. What time is it? 3:30PM. Okay no problem. Tan-awa kanang mga reporter diha sa likod. Perteng ngisi. Abi seguro nila aboton ta ug gabii. Hala, sige. Adjourn kung adjourn. Basi atakehon pa ta anang mga @#$%&*?>@$#reporter kay dili nila gusto hapon ang sesyon.
But before that, I would like to add another rule to the house rules. Starting this session, I would like that—before we adjourn—Josh Groban’s “Raise Me Up” be sang by a councilor. Puli-puli ta. Morag curtain raiser ba. Wa koy labot kung sentonado ka. Basta, ang balaod kanta gyod. Basi gusto ninyo patudlo. Ubanan ta mo sa After Dark kada gabii hangtod mahimong mong Josh Groban.
Okay, the first to sing, karon gryod, would be councilor Nonong Cabling.
And, Nonong, kantaha tong Binisaya nga version ni Max Surban!