By being available and visible to the public, Iloilo Governor Arthur Defensor, Jr. and Iloilo City Mayor Jerry P. Treñas are telling the public: “We are on top of the situation and, with your help and cooperation, we can surmount this crisis.” It’s during times of calamity when leadership and the worthiness of election officials are scrutinized.
The coronavirus disease, or Covid-19, has humbled the province (much like other areas around the world) and there seems to be a resignation and fatalism in the air as despair remains unrelieved despite glimmers of hope spread across social media and traditional media.
Ilonggos and many around the world were caught flat-footed; however, across the province, the show of unity is heart-warming and unparalleled. They know when and how to turn despair into hope and cooperate with authorities and coax others to toe the line through social media and person-to-person persuasion.
Ilonggos are now united against a common enemy. There has been no opposition, bellyaching, nor protest and nobody has criticized or opposed local officials sending out stern executive orders limiting movement.
When Treñas ordered the temporary closure of the Iloilo River Esplanade, nobody complained.
Iloilo City currently has 16 patients under investigation and 1,097 persons under monitoring for Covid-19 and, with these people facing uncertainty and confusion, they need leaders who are intrepid, decisive, and firm. They must be assured everything is being handled efficiently and professionally and that the government is ready to confront crisis with full authority, resources, and technical capabilities.
Health experts, members of the disaster and coordinating council, police, and military will work alongside the local chief executives to calm the nervous public and help them prepare for the next episode. Despite everybody shaking in their boots, they must be kept optimistic as there will be light at the end of the tunnel because leaders are on the forefront helping contain the conflagration.
* * *
Instead of spending a lot of money on a new desk for the office, invest in salvaged wood and pay a carpenter to make one. It will also have an added advantage of fitting the space perfectly.
* * *
If one looks into a room with only one eye, they find it looks flatter than with two eyes. With two eyes, one can see a chair in front of the desk, the roundness of the wastebasket, and the closet’s depth. Eyes are set about two to two and a half inches from each other.
* * *
Eyebrows serve a good and useful purpose. Without eyebrows, the drops of sweat that form on the forehead would run directly into the eyes.
* * *
Alex P. Vidal, who is based in New York City, used to be the editor for two local dailies in Iloilo./WDJ