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Good Morning Judge: Happy Halloween to all

THE long weekend starts as we also start the Halloween celebration where all roads lead to the provinces for the celebration of the All Saints/All Souls day. As this column took note last week, the long weekend starting October 31 up to November 5 will not only be an occasion to pay respect to our departed friends and loved ones but also an occasion to have a reflective pause from our hectic and busy schedules. Reports from the national broadsheets indicated that President Rodrigo Duterte has signed into law R.A. No. 10952 which set the barangay elections to coincide with the local and national elections on May 2018 with hold-over village officials ordered to remain in office. It may be recalled that the barangay polls were originally scheduled on October 31, 2016 but this was moved to October 23, 2017 after President Duterte said he wanted the elections deferred because of possible drug money funding the local politicians’ campaign. The reactions to the deferment of the polls were varied. Some elected officials were elated by the polls’ postponement as they would continue to enjoy the power and the prestige vested on their positions. Some, however, were not happy about it, especially those whose terms will be ending as they long to go back to a private citizen’s life. The allusion to narco-politics as the reason for the postponement also seems to be an unwelcome statement to some local officials. Be that as it may, the Congress has ruled, so let it be. On a personal level, however, I feel that the decision is quite unfortunate in the light of the fact that the Comelec has been preparing for the slated elections and according Chairman Bautista who has since resigned, Comelec has already spent an estimated P700M in terms of the purchase of paraphernalia needed for the purpose. Postponing this sacred exercise to vote twice in a row also makes a mockery of this democratic exercise that elects leaders of the most basic political unit in Philippine society. TRIVIA: Two weeks ago when I renewed my car registration the LTO Naga did not issue any sticker as there was none available. When I also renewed my driver’s license last August, no plastic license issued for lack of supply. Where does the thousands of pesos that the LTO collected from car registration and license renewal go, observers ask. A batch mate of mine from AdeNU high school batch ‘54 sent the following observations: “For our tough-talking and reformist President DU30, it is inaccurate to say ‘anti-drug war’. You should specify ‘anti-illegal drug war’ because coffee contains caffeine, which is the world’s most popular drug. Caffeine is a central nervous system stimulant of the methyl xanthine class, so coffee is the world’s most widely traded and consumed ‘psychoactive drug’. It is legal, safer and unregulated in nearly all parts of the world.” Congratulations and greetings to Patricia Abrantes , sales staff of the Enjoy Realty and Development Corporation, who celebrated her Nth birthday anniversary recently. QUOTATION OF THE WEEK: “YOU CAN DREAM, CREATE, DESIGN, AND BUILD THE MOST WONDERFUL IDEA IN THE WORLD, BUT IT REQUIRES PEOPLE TO MAKE THE DREAM A REALITY.” WALT DISNEY FOR OUR WORD OF LIFE: “AT DAWN MAY THE LORD BESTOW FAITHFUL LOVE, THAT I MAY SING PRAISE THROUGH THE NIGHT.” PSALM 44:9

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