Walang forever

By Alex P. Vidal

“Everything is temporary. Everything is bound to end.” — Keren Ann

AT least two former officials of the Duterte administration are no longer active in the social media.

Before the Duterte regime came into power, they were so active not only in the social media but also in the mainstream media. They constantly appeared in the “kapihan”, a public forum and other talk shows like they owned the franchise of those talk shows.

They also regularly appeared in some newspapers as “columnists” (of course we knew they had “ghost” writers). Even without being invited, they talked a lot to broadcasters on a myriad of topics in order not to be forgotten or left behind in the publicity.

During their heydays, they always had plenty of time discussing the “success” of their agencies in their social media platforms—including their awards, junkets abroad, conferences, appearances as “guest speakers” in civic clubs and private organizations.

They also lived a luxurious life with fat allowances, free meals in expensive hotels, free round-trip air tickets, representation pays, among other pelf and privileges that went with their positions (all shouldered by the taxpayers).

And their names had been linked to various questionable deals that only benefited their pockets and the pockets of their relatives and inamoratas.

With the way they bragged about their “achievements” despite their implied dishonesty, it’s not hard to notice they weren’t ashamed.


One of them got mad when a columnist questioned his multimillion deals that actually benefited his family.

He became so sensitive and threatened to sue the columnist who exposed his shenanigan. The former official backtracked when the brave columnist told him to “bring it on!”

Some of those who knew him before he became a cabinet official were shocked by his transformation from a hitherto reticent person to a furious onion-skinned. He would threaten to eat alive those who would criticized him.

Because the previous president wasn’t known to be the kind of leader who canned subordinates enmeshed in charges of graft and corruption, this ex-government official managed to surreptitiously “disappear” without being noticed, thus all the allegations of act of dishonesty leveled against him went away with his “resignation.”

He actually did not die. He wasn’t sacked. As a loyal acolyte of the former president, he was given an “honorable” exit.

The agency or department he left behind has been in the headlines for being the new citadel of irregularities.

Traces of massive graft and corruption littered from top to bottom, and the new administration felt like it inherited the janitorial job for the stadium abandoned by fans of Argentina and France in the recent World Cup.

Now that their big boss is gone and they, too, were no longer in power, their money-making schemes had been put to a screeching halt.

They have shied away from the social media for fear people might remember their dark and malevolent capers.

As the popular saying in today’s Marites generation goes, “walang forever.”


buena mano report for 2023 from our regular informant, US chess master Marlon Bernardino, said veteran Sherwin Tiu won the GMG Rapid Chess Tournament on December 31, 2022 at the 2nd Floor Open Kitchen Foodhall, Rockwell Business Center, Sheridan Street, Mandaluyong City.

Bernardino said Tiu finished with 6.5 points in seven games to win the top prize of P10,000 in the one-day event organized by Bayanihan Chess Club and sponsored by Coach National Master Gerald Ferriol, in close cooperation with Mam China Aurelio and Mam Mimi Casas of Open Kitchen, sanctioned by the National Chess Federation of the Philippines, supervised by the Philippine Arbiters Chess Confederation.

International Master Daniel Quizon, Arena Grandmaster Jose Rafael “Jojo” Legaspi and International Master Jan Emmanuel Garcia were tied at 2nd to 4th places with 6.0 points each, Bernardino added.

Making it to the list of top ten performers were International Master Ronald Dableo, Fide Master David Elorta, National Master Gerardo Cabellon, National Master Bob Jones Liwagon, National Master Robert Suelo Jr. and National Master Noel dela Cruz with 5.5 points each.

Special award to six years old Marco Polo Sanido and seven years old Zeus Lester Manaois.

Meanwhile, the Sir Herky Del Mundo Memorial Rapid Open Chess Tournament gets underway on Tuesday, January 3, 2023,  2pm (two pm) at the same venue.

(The author, who is now based in New York City, used to be the editor of two local dailies in Iloilo.—Ed)