Monday, April 05, 2010



IMAGINE THIS: yearly, since 2007, Governor Gwen Garcia, her father Deputy House Speaker and 2nd District Representative Pablo Paras Garcia, and her brother 3rd district Representative Pablo John Fiel Garcia, control among the three of them the amount of PhP1,306,275,367.00 every year. Both house representatives have 70 million each of annual budget called as the PDAF/DPWH Fund while Gwen Garcia has an Internal Revenue Allotment of PhP1,166,275,367.00. Which means that the GARCIA family has access to almost 4 BILLION pesos from 2007 to 2009.

We do not know how much Winston Garcia, brother of Gwen Garcia, controls in the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) but I'm going to bet my life that it has to be in the billions of pesos, as well.

Now, two more of Gwen Garcia's brothers are running for public office: Marlon Garcia as Vice-Mayor in Barili and Nelson Garcia as Mayor of Dumanjug. A cousin, Alvin Garcia, is also running for mayor in Cebu City.

Imagine how much money the Garcias of Cebu would then control if all six of these people, not including Winston Garcia, would control if they all won in the May polls?

In the 2008 PASIGARBO SA SUGBO Festival of Festivals, thirty-four contingents joined in the affair.

Each contingent received P100,000.00 as subsidy. That would mean a cool P3.4 MILLION in subsidy alone.

First prize winner received a cash prize of P1 MILLION, while the second placer got P800,000.00, while the third P700,000, until the 8th place which got P200,000. In cash prizes, the Province of Cebu gave out a total of P4,500,000.00.

Based on the figures that we know of, the 2008 PASIGARBO SA SUGBO spent about SEVEN MILLION NINE HUNDRED THOUSAND PESOS of Cebuano taxpayers' money.

During the 2009 PASIGARBO SA SUGBO Festival of Festivals, thirty-two contingents joined in the affair.

Each contingent received an initial subsidy of P100,000.00 and later got additional subsidy of P200,000.00. So, for the 32 contingents, the Province of Cebu doled out 9 MILLION AND 600 THOUSAND PESOS for the subsidies alone.

There was a minimum of 60 participants for each contingent. More or less, each contingent had about 70 to 80 people including chaperons. Most contingents stayed in Mandaue City for two nights. Even if we just count one night, the Province spent another (and this a very conservative but based on government budgetary requirements estimation) P153,000 something for two snacks.

The sound system Gwen usually uses is a very expensive (albeit very dependable and high quality) sound system that would not go below P100,000 in rental. Since Capitol booked it for several days, let's peg it at P300,000.00 (based on the almost half million fee they charged Argao when we had them for 5 days).

First prize winner received a cash prize of P1 MILLION, while the second placer got P800,000.00, while the third P700,000, until the 8th place which got P200,000. In cash prizes, the Province of Cebu gave out a total ofP4,500,000.00.

For the 2009 Pasigarbo sa Sugbo, 14 MILLION 553 THOUSAND PESOS of taxpayers' money was spent.

From February to March 2010, Gwen Garcia has visited Argao more than twice to dole out brand-new multicabs to the 45 barangays of Argao. Each multi-cab (which, sources say, were brokered by the family of Allan Sesaldo, a Gwen Garcia supported and a vice-moyoralty candidate for Argao) supposedly costs P160,000.00; many of the barangays of Argao already have their own multicabs.


The P100,000.00 subsidy, even for just one town, could have paid for 111 AMBULANCE gasoline fees in Argao. The total subsidies for 2008 and 2009 of the Pasigarbo sa Sugbo could have paid for 14,444 AMBULANCE FEES.

The cash prizes for the two Pasigarbos Gwen Garcia squandered, which totals to 9 MILLION PESOS, could have easily bought 264,705 ampules of ventolin solution to be used for the pulmo aide in the hospital.

One of the multicabs distributed in Argao, just one, could have bought 32 pulmo aide machines to help asthmatic patients. Or it could have bought 32,000 pieces of biogesic, alaxan, or neozep.

Budgetary constraints cannot be an excuse. The abovementioned figures are only very few of the many activities and projects that Gwen Garcia had embarked on. The abovementioned amounts could have bought for gasoline for the ambulance, medicines and even machines for the hospital.

A portion of the money above could have also been used to pay for the monthly inspections of district hospitals all over the province to see if there are violations to the policies set by Capitol. Instead, as usual, the little people, the administrators and personnel of Argao's hospital are the ones blamed.

Well, they are only sentries. In any war, it is the general who should be killed to root out the problem.

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