LAWYER Rogelio Bagabuyo, a convenor of the newly formed Socialist Union of Local Opposition Groups (Sulog), yesterday said there is no ‘‘hidden agenda’’ behind the moves to unify groups opposed to the Emano administration.
"Sulog is not competing with any opposition group," said Bagabuyo, adding that he and ex-Emano lawyer Frederico Gapuz were just doing their best to unite all those opposed to the present city administration.
"It’s because we know that unless the opposition groups unite, they will be ‘slaughtered’ once again to the detriment of Cagayan de Oro. Fred (Gapuz) and I have no hidden agenda," Bagabuyo said. "All I can say is that when someone kicks you from behind, it means you are ahead."
Bagabuyo said this obviously as a response to the criticisms of another opposition leader, lawyer Manolo Tagarda Sr. of Pundok Mindanao. The other day, Tagarda said Sulog was infiltrated by ‘‘scalawags’’ and ‘‘DPAs’’ (deep penetration agents) of Mayor Vicente Emano.
Gapuz said it was a bit unfair to call Sulog’s initiators ‘‘scalawags’’ and ‘‘DPAs’’ because Sulog was created out of the desire to unify all groups opposed to Emano’s PaDayon Pilipino.
Gapuz said it was possible that some of those who attended last Saturday’s Sulog meeting were agents of Emano.
‘‘Yes, maybe since the meeting was open to anyone. We had no control over people who may have wanted to spy on us," Gapuz said.
But Gapuz said Tagarda should rethink his position since his group, Pundok Mindanao, ‘‘can’t stand alone’’ in the fight against PaDayon Pilipino.
"Remember that in politics, one needs some allies to win in an election," said Gapuz.
"Is Tagarda really with the ‘opposition’? Yes, but what kind?" Gapuz asked.
He said he would rather not quarrel with Tagarda. He said he would just respect Tagarda’s opinion.
Instead, Gapuz said he would continue working to unite local opposition groups to fight the Emano administration.
"If we can unite the opposition groups, at least 70 to 80 percent, Tagarda’s group would become irrelevant," Gapuz said. "So let him (Tagarda) do his own, and I will do own my own.’’
Meanwhile, Bagabuyo said Sulog’s critics were the ones causing chaos in the local opposition.
"I’m not saying that he (Tagarda) is the one causing chaos. They are the ones who do not want change in the city," Bagabuyo said.
He said the political oppositionists in Cagayan de Oro are now moving toward one direction.
"From 74 people during the first meeting to 145 participants during last Saturday’s meeting... This is a good sign," he said.
At the rate things are going, he said he was confident Emano would soon lose his grip over Cagayan de Oro politics.
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