Buhay si Lapu-Lapu (Una sa Dalawang Yugto)

Rep. Alejano confronts Atty Harry Roque in House committee hearing regarding frigate purchase [Photo: Philstar]

 

ni Wilfredo G. Villanueva

Siguro nakakita na kayo ng rebulto ni Lapu-Lapu. Matipuno, nakatingin sa malayo, nagmamatyag. Akala ko bihira ang mandirigmang Pilipinong katulad ni Lapu-Lapu sa panahon ngayon, ‘yun bang may kakayahan na tumapat sa banyaga na sibat at gulok lang ang armas samantalang nakapanlulumo ang makabagong sandata ng mananakop—na kahit tagilid ang laban, ‘di pa rin pasusupil. Marami pala sila, ang ilan ay nalathala na sa The Villanueva Interviews ng Society of Honor. Tinutukoy ko sila Vice-President Leni Robredo, Sen. Leila de Lima, Sen. Sonny Trillanes, Sen. Kiko Pangilinan, Comm. Chito Gascon, Florin Hilbay, Romy Macalintal, Leah Navarro, Jozy Acosta-Nisperos, Philip Lustre, Jr., Jover Laurio, Dick Malay, Jim Paredes. Pinagpala tayo at nandito si Cong. Gary Alejano, isa sa ating mga bagong usbong na Lapu-Lapu. Philippine Military Academy “strongest cadet,” outstanding scholar, philosopher-warrior, a heart for service, nationalist and family man.

Taong 2000 noon, mga alas siete ng gabi, sa may maisan sa Matanog, Maguindanao, all-out war laban sa Muslim separatists ng administrasyon ng dating Pangulong Erap Estrada. Captain siya ng force reconnaissance marines, katumbas ng U.S. Seal Team Six ang training nila, na kaya nilang lumangoy isang kilometro ang layo sa pangpang, habang nakatali ang mga kamay at paa.

Ganito ang siste noong gabi na ‘yun:

Susugurin nila ang kuta ng MILF (Moro Islamic Liberation Front), pero naunahan sila ng putok. Napako sa kinalalagyan ang unit, at ang utos ni Capt. Alejano, pumuwesto ang gunner nila na may dalang Cal. 7.62 mm, M60 machine gun sa burol para makaporma sila’t mapagtuloy ang naantalang pagsugod. Nahirapan umakyat ang gunner gawa nang buhos na putok mula sa kalaban. Ang ginawa ni Capt. Alejano, tumayo ng matuwid, binalewale ang mga naglipana na bala, dinampot sa uniporme sa bandang batok ang gunner, kilakadkad ito paakyat—laman, dugo, buto’t bakal, tao’t baril—at iniluklok ang tauhan sa vantage point. Naka-abante rin sa wakas ang marines dahil naibalik ang putok. Buong araw ang bakbakan pero kailangang umatras bandang gabi dahil sa dami ng kalaban. Sa bandang dulo ng pag-atras ay siya namang tinamaan sa likuran ng ulo at sa batok si Capt. Alejano mula sa shrapnel galing sa mortar, gabuhok ang layo ng sugat sa gulugod (spine). Nawalan ng malay, kalaunan, nagising, “Buhay pa ako,” buong galak na sinabi sa sarili ng mandirigma. Duguang gumapang papunta sa mga kasamahan, hinarap ang fire zone ng tropang AFP dahil mauubusan siya ng dugo kung iikutan nang pagkalayo-layo ang pwesto ng government forces.

Nagmumuntik-muntikanan na silang tamaan ng friendly fire, sinigurong buo pa ang unit niya nang masagip kahit nanghihina na dahil sa dami ng dugo na nawala.

Papatawan sana ng Medal of Valor,

pinakamataas na award sa kasundaluhan, ngunit naunsiyame’t under appeal ito gawa ng pagsali niya sa protesta sa Oakwood at insidente sa Manila Peninsula na inilunsad ng Magdalo laban sa kurapsyon sa ilalim ng pamumuno ng dating Pangulong Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. Nakulong nang pitong taon.

“Buhay pa ako.” Tinanggap ang consequences ng ginawa, tiniis ang pagkabilanggo, hindi tumakas. At ngayon, isa siyang tinik na nakaharang sa lalamunan ng pinakamataas na opisyal ng pamahalaan—ang kaisa-isang kongresista na naghain ng impeachment complaint laban kay Pangulong Rodrigo Roa Duterte.

Isinama ko ang aking maybahay sa Magdalo headquarters para ma-interview si Cong. Gary, isang nakatutuwang pangyayari, sapagkat andun din pala ang asawa niyang si Minnie, na laging handang tulungan siya. Nagkatapat ang dalawang family man, at dalawang loyal and dutiful wives. Doon kami sa conference room nag-usap, kung saan nagmi-meeting ang mga namumuno ng Magdalo.  Nakalalasing ang kasaysayan ng lahing magiting.

“Over half a million na ang miyembro namin,” sabi ni Gary, “na hindi military, mga civilians, grassroots.”

Si Gary Cajolo Alejano Sr. ay isinilang nuong January 22, 1973 sa Sipalay City, Negros Occidental. Minerva Cojuangco Alejano ang kanyang kabiyak, ng Bamban, Tarlac (hindi close sa mga Cojuangco ng Hacienda Luisita). Dalawang taon silang magkakilala pero hindi nagparamdam ni minsan si Gary. Isang araw, bigla na lang inalok si Minnie na magpakasal. Nagulat, pero pagkatapos ng ilang buwan ay ibinigay din ang matamis na oo. Nagugustuhan din kasi ni Minnie nang lihim ang binata dahil sa taglay nitong values and principles. After 14 years of marriage, limang supling: ang kambal na Martine Gwyneth at Micah Gabrielle, Maxine Gail, Gary Jr., at Gian Marcus. Labing-apat na taon nang kasal, nakayanan ang pagkahiwalay ng pitong taon nang makulong ang bayani. Na-amnesty nuong panahon ng dating Pangulong Benigno S. Aquino III.

Miyembro ng 17th Congress of the Philippines si Gary, tumatayo para sa mga retiradong miyembro ng Armed Forces of the Philippines, urban poor at kabataan.

Madasalin si Gary nung kabataan niya. (Pero maton daw siya panimula. Bumait lang nung high school.) Magpapari sana ngunit pinigilan ng mga magulang.

 

Maging pari o maging sundalo

ang gusto niya. Naka-dalawang taon siya sa kursong electrical engineering sa University of Cebu. Lumipat sa Philippine Military Academy noong 1991. Mistah niya si Senator Sonny Trillanes. Si Cong. Ashley Acedillo naman ay kanyang lower class. Pare-parehong Magdalo, pare-parehong mambabatas.

Well-rounded si Gary. Iskolar na, atleta pa. Nakuha niya ang titulong Strongest Cadet of PMA sa loob ng apat na taon. Paligsahan ito sa push-ups, running, sit-ups at iba pa. Kung makikita ninyo siya, pwede nga naman siyang bihisan ng Lapu-Lapu gaya nang sa rebulto dahil sa taas, tindig at kaha niya. Pride of Filipino manhood si Gary Alejano.

Natuloy ang pagsundalo, pero andun pa rin ang matinding dedikasyon ng isang pari na magserbisyo sa mga nangangailangan. Duon sa PMA namuo ang Magdalo, sa usap-usapang Trillanes, Alejano at iba pang kadete, mga bagong usbong na Pilipino na nagmamahal sa bayan at nais pagsilbihan ang lipunan. Natapos niya ang masters of public management degree sa University of the Philippines Open University (isang on-line course sa state university) habang nasa piitan. Nagpaka-busy siya noon, pati gardening ng organic vegetables hinataw, lalong umitim daw siya dahil doon. Noong 2010 nang mapalaya, kumuha siya ng security program sa Harvard Kennedy School kasama ng representatives ng iba’t-ibang bansa.

Ano ang sitwasyon natin, ayon sa iyong natatanaw, tanong ko.

“Vicious cycle itong bayan natin,” aniya.

“Kailangang i-educate ang mamamayan. Virtual dictator na si Pangulong Duterte, no more democracy, wala nang due process, pero pag sila ang nagviolate, palulusutin.”

“Wala akong budget,” sabi niya. “Pero ang primary role naman namin, lawmaking and oversight function, to make sure all agencies are doing their mandate. Kaya kami nagiinvestigate in aid of legislation. Nasa amin ang power of the purse, pero gigipitin nila ang members ng Congress na hindi ka-alyado.”

Saan na tayo papunta bilang isang bayan?

“We’ll never know. At the end of the day, it will be up to the people. Political action will come from the people. We just have to educate and encourage the people, for them to stand up and take action, to take us to the right place.”

Ang war on drugs?

“Ang controlling mechanism is the war on drugs. Sino ba ang gustong masali sa tokhang? O, may listahan ako, sabi ng Presidente, pwedeng makasama kayo dito sa listahan ko. Maliban sa takot, nais din ng mga politiko umanib sa partido ng pangulo para ma-secure ang political and personal interests nila.”

“In reality, may drug users naman talaga. But how do we address, how do we approach the drug problem in a holistic manner? Is the violation purely criminal? Ang global average ng drug use, five per cent, tayo two per cent lang. Ayon ito sa Dangerous Drugs Board na gumamit ng 5,000 sample size. Malaking sample yun.”

“Extra-judicial killings destroy police professionalism. Ano ba ang strategy? May rehab side yan. Was the Department of Health part of the planning? When officials are asked in one of the budget hearings, their answer was that they just take the cue from the pronouncements of the President. Walang directive mula sa pangulo, walang plano.”

So, ano ang objective ng drug war kung malabo ang parameters, tanong ko.

“Yun nga. Maybe, killing them will send chills up the spine of the people, for control. Takot ang tao magsabi ng saloobin nila dahil sa war on drugs.”

Saan nakatayo ang military sa ginagawa sa atin ng China?

“Sanay ang military sa internal security—rebellion, terrorism, secession—pero bago sa kanila ang external defense and security. Mayroong National Security Policy ang kasalukuyang administration but it’s a policy that remains on paper. In other words, hindi tinutupad.”

Ano ang pwedeng mangyayari sa Pilipinas kung hindi na kayang bayaran ang mga loans ng China na ang tataas ng interest?

“Maliit lang ang interest ng International Monetary Fund at World Bank, marami nga lang requirements, kasama na ang respect for human rights. Ang China, maaaring 7 per cent pa aabot ang interest, pero walang requirements, walang compliance na hinahanap.”

“Ang objective ng tinatawag na Belt and Road Initiative ay ang ilapit ang China sa economic circles ng Asia, Europe at Africa. Animnapu’t walong bayan ang ipagdudugtong sa BRI, may investment na $8 trillion. Ngunit, may agam-agam na hindi mabayaran ang loans ng mga bayan na sakop ng Belt and Road Initiative.” (May karugtong.)

 

Comments
59 Responses to “Buhay si Lapu-Lapu (Una sa Dalawang Yugto)”
  1. karlgarcia says:

    Will ang galing mong mag-interview at makinig.
    Ang galing mong mag capture ng detalye.
    Kudos!

  2. edgar lores says:

    *******
    1. I thank Congressman Gary Alejano for his service to the country.

    2. I was touched by the opening story of his valor under fire.

    3. That valor appears again in his initiation of an impeachment complaint against Duterte. We know how the complaint was rejected on the basis of “no personal knowledge.” A criterion that was not used in the assessment of the impeachment complaint against Chief Justice Sereno.

    3.1. The double standard of Umali and Fariñas is beyond disgusting. It shows how principles, in all branches of government, are not set in stone and are used as palusots for the sake of expediency and convenience.

    3.2. Strangely, the vote to reject was unanimous, 42 to none. I wonder about Belmonte and Bagao. Perhaps they had not yet developed their profiles in courage?

    4. May Gary’s push for senatorship in 2019 come to fruition. We need a fighter to serve in place of Senator Trillanes who will be completing his second and final term. We need sincere and productive patriots like Gary.

    4.1. And we need trapos — like Umali, Fariñas, and unprincipled members of the abswelto committees in the Lower House and in the Senate — like we need Chinese missiles in our backyard.
    *****

    • Wilfredo G. Villanueva says:

      Yes, Edgar, agree on all points. “Tumatayo.” That’s his oft-repeated word. Filipino great.

  3. NHerrera says:

    Will, ang sarap basahin. Salamat. Buti lang may kadugtong. More power to our Modern Lapu-Lapu — Gary Alejano.

    • NHerrera says:

      The theft of US high-tech intellectual properties by Chinese Companies, most probably abetted by Chinese Authorities or at least not hindering such thefts — and now, as shown in the ZTE case, its re-selling to Iran and NK — is a proven fact. I am not a fan of all Trump’s moves, but in this one, I am all for US moves on ZTE and other such moves on Companies involved in intellectual property thefts..

      • karlgarcia says:

        The forced technology transfer is another thing that must be stopped.

        If they want to do tech transfer, why not reverse engineer?

        Is that unethical NH?

        • NHerrera says:

          karl, I have not delved into that subject so my comment here is knee-jerk reply. I suppose it depends on the device being reversed-engineered — watch, car, phone hardware/ software, weapon system and the countries’ laws. And also as to whether the device was bought or stolen. Of course, legality and ethics are also two different animals.

          Take the case of cars, say, of the level of Toyota Vios and its equivalent in other brands — Honda, Hyundai, Volkswagen. In the case of cars, the design and components — rid of the aesthetics, for which one can easily get consultants — are pretty much standardized at this stage of development for cars. So, Sarao, for example may buy several of these (not steal), disassemble, study and after sometime come out with a car whose components are not exact copies, but functionally similar [refer to my bold italicized note]. In the case of car then, the resulting Sarao-made car may not be the product of an illegal or unethical act.

  4. Will, Salamat. Consistent si Cong. Alejano pagdating sa pagbantay sa nangyayari sa mga isla..

    Ang tanong, may paki pa ba ang Pilipino ngayon, o basta may kabuhayan kahit sinong amo OK?

    Tignan natin. Kasi sayang kung utak alila nalang ang majority, iyan ang wala na talagang pag-asa.

    • One more thing – this is also for the English-ispokening.. I have observed a simplistic “anti-imperialism” among Dutards but not only among them which makes it hard for Magdalo..

      It is of the kind “the white man is the enemy”. Duterte attacking the EU, throwing out the Australian nun, insulting IMF’s LaGarde – or Sasot attacking the BBC reporter, the demo she organized in front of the ICC all fit into that simplistic frame of mind.

      The frame of mind that dislikes the USA but ignores Chinese incursions. People who think that simply will say “who attacked the Philippines in the time of Lapu-Lapu, wasn’t it whites?”. Then one can continue with Balangiga Bells etc. – racism as an extension of tribal thinking.

      • Same stupid attitude – this time anti-Arab – was at work in Kuwait..

        The undertone of the uncoordinated rescue actions was “the Arabs are harming Filipinos”. Understandably they were pissed off – good they didn’t react more harshly.

        • karlgarcia says:

          You have reason to believe that the reported abuse were only isolated incidents?
          Kindly enlighten me Irineo, medyo mixed reaction ako eh.

          • They are not isolated incidents. In fact Filipinas regularly flee from Arab employers when they are with them in Germany. Arabs were the first slave traders in Africa and all of that.

            Helping Filipinas get out of such situations is correct – in fact there are groups in Berlin that secretly slip emergency numbers to Pinays accompanying Arab families, JUST IN CASE.

            But Sassots comment that the Philippines should invade Kuwait to protect them is stupid. Just like these videoed “rescue operations” which insult the host country, making it look as if the FIlipinos see them as accomplices to abusers – and endanger others who are in need.

            There is another side to the whole matter though. I remember meeting a woman in the mid 1980s in Bonn at a Filipino basketball tournament. Asked here where she worked she said middle East, I said mataas ba ang suweldo, she said “hindi kuwan lang sa bawat lalake”. Kuwan is a certain amount she named which I have forgotten – even I forget stuff at times. But that jibes with a story told me by a German whose wife is from one of the Gulf States.

            He told me there are cases of Pinays (a) killing their employers, or those who (b) run away and then are found to be working as prostitutes. Certainly some cases of (a) are similar to Sara Balabagan, and some (b) cases are due to syndicates – but not all are that innocent.
            On the other hand, I once met an Arab here in Munich who really likes Pinoys, tells me he had a lot of OFW friends back home. But I am of course aware that Orientals tend to treat men VERY differently from women. Wholesale Pinay export to the Gulf never was that wise.

            In all matters regarding crimes with one’s own nationality and another involved it is better to keep cool and not prejudge. It isn’t always that simple, just like in the case of J. Laude and LCPL Pemberton. The natural instinct is “one’s own folks” are right, but it isn’t always true.

            • If you consider a country totally unsafe for your citizens, then you have this option: Filipino passports in the late 1980s had the stamp on them “Not Valid for Travel to Lebanon”.

              And another thing: Mocha said in one video that all who want relatives to be rescued can just call. That is indeed bordering on kidnapping. And if you remove people from a place without local police as witnesses, what do you do if the employers say stuff is missing from their house or their construction site? They can claim it, or it can really be true that you have helped a thief, what then? There are good reasons for being cautious in handling matters, of course many Pinoys expect 100% kampihan but in some situations it is just unprofessional.

              • karlgarcia says:

                Thanks Irineo, that explains a lot.

              • Welcome – “it’s complicated”, ika nga. Add unconfirmed stories of Pinoy shenanigans..

                Not to even mention the Embassies themselves – recent stories I read about some Labor Attaches having suspected recruiter connections remind me of very old stories I heard. And of course none of that is unlikely, given what does happen in the Philippine government. There are even former Tourism Secretaries who are tour operators themselves and have many brothers, one always got a black eye from Kuya which is why he wears shades. 😀

              • karlgarcia says:

                Hehe 😊

      • Francis says:

        @Irineo

        My short-term gut response:

        This is what I have been saying this whole time. The great division in Filipino politics is between the Westernized/Liberals and the Nativists/Nationalists.

        The “Left” is spread across this spectrum—with the moderates being closer to the former, and the more orthodox currents being closer to the latter.

        • Francis says:

          Addendum:

          This is why I stressed earlier on the article on preambles the need to adopt liberalism to the Filipino context—or rather, to infuse universal liberal values via Filipino idioms and metaphors.

          Duterte is bigger than Duterte; he is a new phase in the cultural tensions that mark the soul of this country.

          Despite being an Inglasero who who has the vocabulary of an elementary student in Filipino, I insist that liberals must contest the Filipino language itself, must transition from English to Filipino as their main language of discourse, if liberalism is to survive as a major current of thought in the national discourse.

          Right now—the Left and the Nationalists have a monopoly on Filipino. I find that extremely disappointing.

          • Magdalo are intelligent nationalists who understand who is the enemy NOW. I don’t even consider them Liberals, they are pro-democracy and rule of law but definitely right-wing. Those who consider any Westerner an enemy are fools playing into Chinese hands.

        • There is a difference between Nativist and Nationalist. Magdalo are Nationalists. Looking after the interests of the nation is something respectable any nation should do for itself.

          Sass Sasot and Duterte – and many extreme leftists – are Nativists. “The white man has been doing bad things to us for 500 years, so let us reject help from the EU today”. Categories of clan and tribe are applied to races, with a good helping of victim mentality.

          • Sup says:

            Sass Sasot reject help EU?
            After a free schooling and stay in Netherland?
            Bastos……………

          • edgar lores says:

            *******
            Good points.

            1. Granted that Magdalos are nationalists, pro-democratic, and right-wing but not liberals, then what are Nativists like?

            2. If we take Duterte to be the epitome of a Nativist, I might conclude that Nativists are:

            2.1. Extremists on either side of center. Duterte is a fascist with deep leftist sympathies.

            2.2. Non-nationalists, willing to be subjects of neo-colonials. Duterte loves Xi.

            2.3. Anti-democrats, with a strong authoritarian bent and willing to forgo human rights for greater state control. Duterte is an autocrat.

            2.3.1. Currently, Nativists are NOT totally non-democratic… yet. Democracy is tolerated as the mechanism for the political turnover but there is a slight drift towards a single-party system.

            2.3.2. The shape of the separation of powers is not a horizontal block of three rectangles but a triangle with the dominant Executive at the top and the Legislature and Judiciary at the base.

            2.4. Question: Are Nativists federalists? Is Federalism compatible with a centrist authoritarian regime? I think Nativists think along the lines of Rajahs and Datus. In this sense, they are Federalists.

            3. The ideology of Nativism is undeveloped and the structural framework is tenuous.

            3.1. The basic problem seems to be a desire for a strong authoritarian center coupled with an opposite desire for a decentralized semi-autonomous structure.

            3.2. If dynasties are not removed, the states — the Datuships — can hold sway. But the authoritarian center — the Rajahship — cannot. It is non-hereditary. Duterte will go. Arroyo will go. Marcos will go. There will be a continuous need for an autocrat — a Putin, a Xi, a Duterte — but the center will not hold.
            *****

    • Wilfredo G. Villanueva says:

      You’re welcome, Irineo. Utak alila. Ang sakit.

  5. Olivia says:

    Iboboto ko at ng buongbpamilya ko angvtaong simbolo ng kagitingan. We are proud of you and your group. Panonpo ba sumali sa Magdao group?

  6. Popoy Del R. Cartanio says:

    ‘Insan, hindi kulang ang lahing Pinoy sa mga marangal at ehemplong nilalang, mga tunay na siga sa kabutihan, karangalan mo nang sila at kapanayamin para lumawak naman ang ipagmamalaka ng madlang pipol. Salamat ‘insan sa malasakit mo.

  7. Popoy Del R. Cartanio says:

    Yung mga hindi naliligayahan o nasisiyahan dito sa TSoH interviews gumawa naman sana ng kanilang TSoD (Society of Dishonor ni Kulokoy) . Kopyahin si ‘Insan sa mga interview pero mga question pare-pareho lang.

    Pare ko, Okay ka, Ang laki ng Tagumpay mo, biglang yaman Pare! Eh share mo naman papano ka nagkaganyan? Anong ang ginamit mong puhunan?

    Sir, Mam, alam ng publiko mayaman ang pamiltya nyo, pero mga bayani kayo dahil pinili nyong magsilbi sa kababayan nyo. Dahil sa lumagong negosyo nyo sa mga probinsiya dumami at dumali ang mamili ng mga tao sa kailangan nila.

    Sir, Mam ang lakas nyo daw sa mga pulis , hanggang sa korte suprema, ano ba ang sekreto nyo?

    Sir, Mam dito sa TSoD pantay-pantay lahat dito, lahat naman tumutulong at nagsisilbi sa mga mahirap na kababayan natin. Ano ang masasabi nyo sa mga kritikong tila galit sa inyo?

    Ang TSoD ay kadugo at kabuto ng mga mahilig sa wang-wang Ang mga TSoH bukod sa off limits, at laging binubura dito. TSoD ang pugad ng mga Wakarang at Wakawakwak.

  8. gerverg1885 says:

    Will,

    Pasensiya na pero ang di ko matatanggap ay ang sinabi mong mandirigmang Pilipino si Lapu-lapu dahil siya ang unang katutubong lumaban sa mga Kastila.

    Wala pa ang term na Pilipino noong panahong iyon. At palagay ko ay hindi papayag ang mga sunod niyang lahi na tawagin siyang ganon.

    Salamat.

    • Popoy Del R. Cartanio says:

      Hindi tuligsa ito o pagmamagaling na puna ito Gerverg1885.Pilosopong Eche bucheche lang ni Popoy. Noon panahon ni Jesus, Joseph at Maria, iniisip ko ano ba ang apelyido nila? Si Hesus wala namang Kristo, naging Hesukristo. JESUS CHRIST!

      I read about the brutal end of Magellan in the thigh–deep waters of shores of Mactan/Cebu. Lapu-lapu it was mentioned was not his real name. It seems the root of battle was tribal fighting where foreigners tried to meddle and was given a lesson. Forebears and descendants have reasons of pride and honor which I agree we should be neutral..

  9. NHerrera says:

    Off topic

    NOTE ON THE REPORTED Q1 2018 GDP GROWTH RATE OF 6.8 PERCENT

    That seems like a reasonably good growth rate even if it falls below NEDA’s 7%-8% forecast. Then I read about IMF’s Managing Director Christine Lagarde’s gloomy outlook on the Philippines and the immediate visceral reaction of Duterte against Lagarde — complete with the trademark P. I. phrase — and I asked myself why.

    Sure enough the detailed growth picture of the GDP — Q1 2018 versus Q1 2017 — is not that pretty or healthy. The chart below is taken from Rappler’s Business Report:

    https://www.rappler.com/business/202132-gross-domestic-product-philippines-q1-2018-economic-growth

    Now I am not as economy savvy as some economic experts here at TSH (ref, chemrock and others), but what little I know results in my following comments on the chart:

    1. First, Q1 2017 GDP growth rate over Q1 2016, I believe, carried much of the program of ex-Pres Aquino, a little over six months from the start of Pres Duterte’s term.

    2. Look at the chart of GDP growth rate by Industrial Origin: the Agri, Fishery, Forestry sector from which the many poor derive its subsistence is unhealthy (Q1 2017 = 4.9%, Q1 2018 = 1.5%) even though there is an uptick in the Industry sector (Q1 2017 = 6.5%, Q1 2018 = 7.9%).

    3. Next look at GDP by Consumption or Expenditure. There is a decrease in Household Consumption (Q1 2017 = 5.9%, Q1 2018 = 5.6%), probably from a combination of price inflation and decreased employment/ income — not a healthy sign from poverty level viewpoint.

    Let us jump next to the exports-imports: the contribution to the GDP is in the net export, meaning more exports than imports is good, the reverse bad. In this respect Q1 2017 is better in that the trade deficit at 1.3% (= 18.7% – 17.4%) is lower compared to the larger trade deficit in Q1 2018 of 3.1% (= 9.3% – 6.2%).

    Now let us go to the middle two items: Government final consumption and capital formation. The investment item are marginally the same. But the huge government spending on BBB Program etc (for which TRAIN has to be passed) explains the huge growth Q1 2018 vs Q1 2017 of 13.6% compared to Q1 2017 vs Q1 2016 of only 0.1%

    (There are details in the Philippine Statistics Authority Report.)

    IMF’s Lagarde and her staff must have examined the detailed components of the GDP growth rate and based her opinion on the details!

    Indeed, “the devil is in the details.”

  10. Bert Mabilin says:

    Hoped you get the side of the present administration if you believe in a fair and square presentation of reality.

    • Wilfredo G. Villanueva says:

      Hi Bert! I did try to secure an appointment with Spox Harry Roque since Christmas last year pa, by coursing through my highly-placed PCOO contact, but it died in the vine. If you can help, I’d be delighted to write them up.

  11. Lot says:

    Can I share this?

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  1. […] thank Will Villanueva for his many enlightening, humanistic interviews, and particularly his recent insights into Representative Gary Alejano of the Magdalo party. I was inspired by both the man and the party, as I have been with the Senate […]



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