Let me congratulate my good friend Councilor Hanz Abella who was recently appointed a commissioner of the regional office of the National Labor Relations Commission (NLRC-7).
As a councilor of Cebu City, Hanz is considered a hardworking legislator who shies away from controversies and the limelight. Abella will be missed by colleagues and by his constituents in the city.
Good luck, Hanz, and I am confident that you are going to do a good job in your new appointment which you richly deserve.
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With Abella’s appointment in the NLRC, the balance of power in the City Council now swings back to Barug Team Rama because under the law, the
person who will replace Abella should come from the same party where Abella was elected.
And Abella was elected as councilor under Barug Team Rama; thus, two names were mentioned to possibly replace him.
They are Barangay Chairperson Lotlot Ignacio Soon and Jun Jun Osmeña, son of the late vice mayor Renato Osmeña. Both are loyal members of Barug Team Rama.
But I warn Barug Team Rama to choose carefully who will replace Abella since he or she should withstand all moves of the Bando Osmeña-Pundok Kauswagan (BO-PK) to win them over and convince them to jump ship.
It is expected that Mayor Tommy Osmeña will do everything to convince some Barug Team Rama members to shift to BO-PK like what he did to Councilors Dave Tumulak and Jerry Guardo.
Some people thought before that Barug Team Rama councilors will stick with the party after winning reelection under the banner, but we were wrong because those who left valued their political ambition and survival over loyalty.
Another person who is rumored to replace Abella is Attorney Coping Fernandez, who is an original Team Rama member and is perceived by many as highly qualified and loyal to Team Rama.
I think the premium requirement to replace Abella is more on loyalty than being qualified because of Mayor Osmeña’s plans to target members of Barug Team Rama in order to win support for his legislative agenda.
A person’s educational and professional qualifications are more of a bonus. I hope and pray that the Barug Team Rama leadership will be guided accordingly and choose the best replacement for Councilor Abella.
Mayor Tommy Osmeña is a smart, shrewd and wily politician who has gone through a lot of challenges, and he is a political survivor.