‘Look who’s talking’
Davide lashes back at Garcia, ready to face Congressional probe
Rep. Gwendolyn Garcia’s expose of “horror stories” at the Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center (CPDRC) could trigger a backlash as Gov. Hilario Davide III promised to expose anomalies at the jail during Garcia’s term as governor.
“Itug-an nako didto sa congreso nga ilang gihimong gatasan ang CPDRC sa dihang si Gwen ug Byron pa ang gaduma sa prisohan,(I will tell Congress that the Garcias made CPDRC a milking cow when Gwen and Byron were the ones running the detention facility),” a statement from the Public Information Office of the Cebu Capitol sent to Cebu Daily News read.
“Itug-an nako didto sa Congreso nga ang problema sa drogas nakaugat na kana sa panahon pa sa mga Garcia (I will reveal to Congress that the problem of drugs took its roots during the time of the Garcias),” the statement read.
Garcia, in a privilege speech before the House of Representatives sought a congressional inquiry, in aid of legislation, into what she called gross mismanagement and administration of CPDRC after raising before Congress “deeply troubling and frustrating developments” at the jail.
Davide, in the same statement, said he was more than willing to submit to an investigation, “although I don’t know what kind of law she intends to legislate.”
“In Congress, my voice will be the voice of the whole of Cebu. And let me remind Gwen that the truth can never be won through grandstanding.”
In a separate interview, Davide described the former governor, and now Cebu’s third district representative, as “hilas” (repulsive for being self-righteous).
“Gihilasan ko (She’s arrogant). I don’t know if she forgot. Nalimtan tingali ni Manang (maybe she forgot), that under her watch 133 inmates died and two inmates escaped who have not yet been recaptured until now,” Davide said, calling Garcia “Manang” alluding to their age difference.
Asked for comment, Garcia said, “Name-calling won’t get him anywhere. It only exposes the weakness of his position.”
“There are serious charges regarding his culpability of the CPDRC mess. He should come up with a better answer than such a lame reply,” Garcia’s text message to CDN read.
Davide however said there were bigger issues that haunted CPDRC during Garcia’s term as governor.
Corruption in CPDRC
The statement said that maybe Garcia forgot that in 2010, she and her brother Byron Garcia, who was then a Capitol consultant on CPDRC matters, had a big fight over the money donated by foreigners for the inmates.
“Dili nato kalimtan nga early 2010, si Gwen mismo ang nimando nga ipaundang ang dancing inmates tungod sa anomaliya sa kwarta sa CPDRC (Let us not forget that it was Gwen herself who ordered the cessation of the dancing inmates because of anomalies regarding money at the CPDRC),” the statement read.
Davide in that statement also questioned the exclusive arrangement between Sony Entertainment and CPDRC and why Byron Garcia’s contract as consultant was not renewed.
“Tungod ba wa ge remit ang kwarta? (Is it because the money was not remitted?),” the statement read.
Davide likewise asked whether Garcia, during her term as governor, had a clear accounting of the moneys donated for the inmates.
Davide said the drug problem inside the jail did not start during his administration but had been there during Garcia’s term.
He also said that even if the “dancing inmates”, which became internationally famous during Garcia’s administration, was but a cover on the illegal activities inside CPDRC in her term.
“Drug den, nga dugay naman ng drugs diha. Kadtong panahon niya dunay misikat nga dancing inmates. Well in fairness to her, maayo to, but she didn’t see the dark side of the CPDRC. The dark secrets of CPDRC, unsa may gibuhat niya?” Davide said.
(What drug den, when drugs have been there for a long time. During her administration, the dancing inmates became famous and it was good… But what did she do about the dark secrets of CPDRC?)
Davide said he hopes that the public would see that the provincial government is exerting all efforts to make reforms inside the CPDRC.
In response, Garcia said, “Whether true or not, the fact remains that CPDRC is in a mess now under his watch. Davide owes the Cebuanos an explanation because he is the present governor, and not me.”
Garcia said that the Aug. 13 raid in the CPDRC which yielded several contraband items merely confirmed how “horribly mismanaged” the CPDRC. Davide said that he is willing to submit himself to the investigation called by Garcia.
Davide laughed off Garcia’s description of his inclusion in the Honor List of Governors by the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) as a “mistake” and an “irony of ironies”. The list was read by President Rodrigo Duterte.
He said maybe Garcia was envious because she never got the award in the nine years she was in office.
“Maayo unta kung nangapply ko ana. Sila, ang DILG man na nagpili ana. Na “S” (suya) siguro siya (I never applied for that. DILG was the one who chose the governors. Maybe she is just envious,” Davide added.
“…But what is more ironic is that Gwen Garcia, who is out on bail due to her pending corruption charges, mao pa’y maka-ako ug panulisok nako (is the one who has the nerve to point her finger at me),” the statement further read.
In the statement, Davide also said that even the mistake in the spelling of his name in the list, was sneered at by Garcia.
“Apan bahala nalang ug tawgon ko’g Hilarious Davide, basta dili lang ko anggaan ug Gwen Balili (Never mind if I am called Hilarious Davide so long as I am not nicknamed Gwen Balili),” the statement read, obviously referring to the Balili lot controversy during Garcia’s term.
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