Rabat reconciliation in the offing?


The reconciliation of the Rabats of Mati City is fast becoming imminent as the two Rabat families, from opposing factions, have expressed their willingness to kiss and make up after years of being at odds.

In her inaugural address before the City Council Thursday, July 4, Mati City Mayor Michelle Nakpil Rabat apologized to her cousin Carlo Rabat whom she defeated in the May 2019 election.

Carlo was two-term mayor from 2013-2019 after having defeated Michelle who also was a two-term mayor from 2007-2013.

Michelle admitted that it was with a heavy heart when she decided to seek the mayoral post instead of just allowing Carlo to have his third term. She said that she could however not turn her back on the clamor of the people for her return.

Mayor Rabat said that her campaign was a lonely one as she was independent and had no slate.

Aside from the people’s clamor for her return, Mayor Rabat’s victory was also boosted when Davao Oriental Governor Nelson Dayanghirang and 1st District Rep. Corazon Malanyaon decided to drop Carlo Rabat from their slate and support Michelle Rabat instead.

The governor and congresswoman’s decision stemmed from an earlier conflict with then mayor Carlo Rabat who refused to support the candidacy of the full slate of the Hugpong ng Pagbabago in Mati City headed by vice mayoral candidate Maria Gracia Tiago.

Carlo Rabat instead threw his support to the candidacy of his cousin incumbent Vice Mayor Glenda Rabat-Gayta.

In her speech before the City Council Thursday, Vice Mayor Glenda Rabat also admitted her difficulty in running her campaign in the May 2019 election. The vice mayor said that her experience made her realize that “true friends are hard to find”.

Vice Mayor Glenda then told Mayor Michelle that it’s about time for a family reconciliation. To this, Mayor Michelle said that family reconciliation will soon come but away from the public eye.

The Rabats have been lording over the political landscape of Mati City for decades now. Michelle’s father Francisco G. Rabat was mayor of Mati and governor of Davao Oriental. Carlo Rabat’s father, Luis G. Rabat, was also mayor of Mati for several years. Glenda’s father, Benito G. Rabat, also became mayor of Mati. Benito, Luis, and Francisco are brothers.


Speaker bets meet with Duterte siblings

Duterte Coalition leaders Rep. Paolo Duterte and Mayor Inday Sara Duterte met with candidates for speaker of the House, Rep. Martin Romualdez, Rep. Lord Allan Velasco, and Rep. Alan Peter Cayetano in Davao City today, July 6, 2019.

Rep. Paolo Duterte said the meeting was cordial, where they discussed the progress of the country.

The Duterte Coalition aimed at uniting the House of Representatives.

Paolo bows out from speakership race


I have personally spoken to President Rodrigo Duterte Thursday night in Davao City regarding my plan to run for speaker of the House of Representatives. We both agreed that this will not be the right time for me to be Speaker and I can still help his administration from the House in a different capacity.

As President of Hugpong sa Tawong Lungsod, I will support the bid for speakership of Congressman Isidro Ungab from our sister party, Hugpong ng Pagbabago.

The President has also been fully informed of Rep. Ungab’s participation in the race for the next Speaker of the House of Representatives.

Thank you.

Mati City mayor outlines priority projects in 1st inaugural address

The City of Mati Mayor Michelle Nakpil Rabat outlined her priority projects during her first inaugural address before the City Council Thursday, July 4, 2019.

Mayor Rabat, the first city mayor of Mati, identified education, agriculture, health, social welfare, tourism, peace and order, housing, disaster preparedness and sports as her administration’s priorities for the next three years.

Health will however get the lion share of the annual budget starting next year with 15%.

On education, Mayor Rabat said that the City Government will be providing scholarships to deserving Matinians from elementary, high school and college.

On tourism, with Mati fast-becoming the best tourist destination in the region, Mayor Rabat said she will be creating a Tourism Council that would help boost the industry in the city.

The lady mayor also welcomed the plan of the Provincial Government and the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) to reopen the Mati airport for commercial use.

It was learned that the Mati airport was built in the 80s by Mayor Rabat’s father, then Davao Oriental Governor Francisco G. Rabat. Cebu Pacific is reportedly interested on the Mati route after it topped in the airline’s survey for new destinations.

On peace and order, Mayor Rabat vowed to make Mati a drug-free city as she plans on constructing a drug rehabilitation center with the help of the national government.

Mayor Rabat also urged everyone to be prepared for any calamities especially so that Mati lies in two earthquake faults and has been hit by strong typhoons in the past.

She also plans on relocating all residents in danger zones and constructing housing projects in safer areas. Rabat said global and smart town centers will also be constructed to make Mati ready for the future.

With her father being a basketball player in his younger days, Mayor Rabat said that she wants the young to be involved in sports thus her plan to construct a training center that will train young athletes all year round and not just when there are upcoming sports competition.

Mayor Rabat also urged the City Council to revisit the past ordinances that may need amending or abolition.

The new city mayor also vowed to make the government bureaucracy as transparent as possible. But she also warned all government employees that they will be made accountable of all their actions in the past as well as the future as her administration will not tolerate any anomalies.

“We are here to serve the needy and not the greedy. If you want change to happen, be the change,” Mayor Rabat said. (MATI CIO)

“Duterte Coalition” created in Congress

A supposed coalition of Duterte supporters in Congress, regardless of political affiliations, was created as tension rises in the selection of the new House Speaker.

In a released statement Friday, July 5, the Duterte Coalition reminded all appointed officials to refrain from dipping their fingers in the speakership race as they do not have the mandate to do so.

“It has come to our attention that certain Presidential Cabinet members have their bet for Speaker. Everyone should note that, Cabinet members serve only on the basis of the trust and confidence of the President and should not participate in the selection of the Speaker,” the Coalition said.

It added that only the elected officials, in particular the Congressmen and Congresswomen “are the only rightful electorate for their leader”.

“Let us draw the line to define the independence of the Executive and the Legislative branches of the government,” the Duterte Coalition said.

“As members of the House of Representatives, Hugpong ng Pagbabago and Hugpong sa Tawong Lungsod hope to unite the House. We have created the Duterte Coalition and we wish to invite everyone to join this group of lawmakers who believe in positive change,” the group added.

The group said that the Duterte Coalition is a strategic partnership of dynamic public servants who are committed to institute governance and development reforms that are necessary for the Philippines to secure its rightful place in the world stage of nations, particularly in the Southeast Asian region.

“A special call to be a partner is extended to Congressmen Ferdinand Martin Romualdez, Alan Peter Cayetano, and Lord Allan Jay Velasco. We shall not serve one interest, we will work for all Filipinos. And we begin today,” the Coalition stated.

Signatories to the Duterte Coalition statement are Rep. Paolo Z. Duterte, Rep. Isidro Ungab, Rep. Vincent Garcia, Rep. Corazon Malanyaon, Rep. Manuel Zamora, Rep. Lorna Bautista, Rep. Claudine Bautista, Rep. Sandro Gonzales, and Rep. Anton Lopez.

Rumor has it that the Duterte coalition has already 60% of the members of the Lower House to its side.