‘Traitors’ — Alcover on Tumulak, Abella bolting from Team Rama
Cebu City Councilor Pastor Alcover Jr. called Councilors Dave Tumulak and Nendell Hanz Abella “traitors” for suddenly bolting from Team Rama without informing them beforehand.
He also accused Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña of “raiding” their group with the goal of achieving the majority bloc in the Cebu City Council.
“Kung oportunista gyud ka, motraydor gyud ka (If you are an opportunist, you will really betray your group),” Alcover said in a press conference he called yesterday in his office.
Councilor Joel Garganera said Tumulak and Abella should have talked with them first before leaving Team Rama.
“We were surprised by his (Tumulak) decision. It’s like having a girlfriend. You only learn from your neighbors that she has broken up with you,” Garganera said.
Informing the group would have been “basic respect”, he added.
Garganera said Tumulak was one of the assets of Team Rama. However, he has no plans of reaching out to him to convince him to go back to Team Rama.
Tumulak, on the other hand, said nothing is final yet as he still considers himself as an independent councilor. He said he has not yet officially accepted Mayor Osmeña’s offer for him to become Deputy Mayor for Police Relations.
“He has no right to call me a traitor. He doesn’t even know me since my childhood. I’m answerable to Cebu City constituents. I have a mandate to serve Cebu City. I’m an independent councilor, whatever legislation is for the good of Cebu City, I’m in,” he told Cebu Daily News.
Alcover said both Tumulak and Abella have repeatedly promised other Team Rama members, barangay captains and supporters that they would not transfer to Bando Osmeña-Pundok Kauswagan (BO-PK) amid rumors that they and two other councilors were set to jump the fence.
Alcover said that what the two did can be considered political survival for the next elections.
Garganera, meanwhile, said Team Rama has been undergoing so many things, including Michael Rama’s loss in the elections, his suspension and President Rodrigo Duterte naming him as a drug protector.
“Nadagma na, giyatakan pa (He already fell, he is also being stepped on.) Kana bang pity ba, but I know he (Rama) is a strong person,” said Garganera.
Tumulak said he is set to meet with the mayor and Cebu City Police Office chief, Joel Doria.
“We haven’t talked yet. But by the time I can talk with the mayor and Doria, we will have to come upwith what would be the best for the city to enhance and preserve public safety. We need the public to cooperate in achieving public safety and peace and order. There should be cooperation and trust from the public,” Tumulak said.
Osmeña has also offered Abella to be deputy mayor for education.
But until now, Abella has not responded to calls and texts to confirm if he is leaving Team Rama and accepting Osmeña’s offer.
On the other hand, gaining more allies would also benefit Osmeña particularly in the city council, Alcover said.
“They have what they call Operation October. Target ni Tomas is to get the majority in the council before October. Once they become the majority in the city council, they control City Hall. Ila mapabaligya ang SRP (South Road Properties) kay dako kaayo na’ng kwarta ug pwede nila lawgawon ang budget (They can sell the SRP because that’s big money and they can control the budget),” he added.
Aside from Tumulak and Abella, Alcover named councilors James Anthony Cuenco and Jerry Guardo as the two others rumored to bolt Team Rama for BO-PK.
Osmeña brushed off Alcover’s pronouncements.
“They just want to do something. I have my priorities in the city. I don’t ask anyone to pledge allegiance to me. What am I? An emperor?” he said.
He also denied that he is “raiding” Team Rama.
Instead he said that when he was not yet in City Hall, it was Team Rama who wooed former councilors Gerry Carillo, Richard Osmeña and Noel Wenceslao to leave BO-PK.
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