Ex-Baguio mayor Bugnosen passes on / Sen. Sotto’s ‘joke’

>> Monday, May 22, 2017

Alfred P. Dizon

BAGUIO CITY – This summer capital lost one of its gentle and compassionate mayors last week.
Former city mayor Jaime Roldan Bugnosen passed on May 9 after celebrating his 91st birthday at the hospital the preceding Saturday.   
A report by Julie Fianza of the city information office said Bugnosen was born in Tadian, Mt. Province May 6, 1926 to Isidro Cat-eg Bugnosen and Flora Roldan. Bugnosen was the eldest of five siblings: Andres, Mauricio, Floro and Mercedes. 
He graduated from Lucban Elementary School in 1938, after transferring from Mankayan, Benguet. His high school days at the Baguio City High School were cut short due to World War II, but he finished later at the Kalinga Academy in Kalinga.
He graduated with the degree Bachelor of Science in Commerce from the University of Baguio (UB) and passed the board examinations for Certified Public Accountant (CPA) in 1957.
He served as a dedicated public servant being elected and re-elected as city councilor in 1963 and 1967, as vice-mayor and later as mayor of the city, in 1988 to 1992. He bowed out of public service after 18 years, and was often sought as lecturer and active socio-civic leader.  
While in the city council, he was instrumental in establishment of Baguio City High School annexes, Special Education (SpEd) school and other public works.     
Awarded as an outstanding citizen during the 102th Baguio Charter day celebration, he continued to share his visions to the younger generation through education and socio-civic work, clubs and federations, some of which he pioneered.
Married to Onesima Elizalde Manipon of San Juan, La Union, Tagudin and Santiago, Ilocos Sur; they have six children; Isiand, Cynthia, Marichu, Jaime Jr., Eileen Mae and Marlowe.
The late mayor was seen as a gentle person, often inculcating values through kindness in words and deeds. According to one of his sons, he taught them to be sensitive to other people’s feelings and predicaments.
His remains lie in state at his Sta. Scholastica home and will be brought to city hall on Tuesday, May 16, for services. On Wednesday his remains will be transferred to the United Church of Christ Philippines (UCCP), Baguio before burial.
Our condolences to the Bugnosen family, particularly to Sonny (Jaime Jr.), a fellow musician of the jazz genre,  who like his father, is a humble man. Sonny was asked by the Pomar family to play piano at the opening of Crossroads Bar along Naguillian Road on Friday but he begged off, saying his father died.
It took a “joke” from Sen. Tito Sotto for the plight of solo parents, particularly mothers to be put in the limelight. 
According to Sotto, it is a sign of moving on from the issue that raised public ire when he cracked a joke about single parents at the confirmation hearing of Welfare Secretary Judy Taguiwalo.
Sotto said she was “na ganun” to imply she did the sexual act, being a solo parent which raised a howl among the populace particularly feminists. The senator could simply have forgotten that he was not hosting “Eat Bulaga,” the television show where a word, action or object could be given a sexual connotation by its overly imaginative hosts.   
“It was blown out of proportion, but it is a blessing in disguise because there is more attention to it. We can rally Congress,” Sotto said. “We can rally the Senate to seriously look at the amendments that they are proposing which if think are very laudable and important.”
A group of solo parents met with the Office of the Majority Floor Leader Sen. Tito Sotto to ask for support about the amendment of Republic Act 8972 or the Solo Parents Welfare Act.
According to DSWD Central Office Solo Parents Organization president Carina Javier, the organization wants single parents to have more benefits under this law. It includes discounts on products such as milk, vitamins, supplements and medicine, hospitalization bills, laboratory fees, school supplies and others.
“We want to have law, RA 8972, amended within the year if possible, this amendment will grant additional benefits and privileges to solo parents and our children. And we all know that majority of solo parents are women, poor, unemployed, uneducated,” Javier said.
Senator Sotto assured that he will push for the appeal of the Solo Parents’ Organization at the senate.
Sen. Sotto said he will immediately create a draft bill that may be consolidated with other proposed amendments on the Solo Parents’ Welfare Act.
“We will seriously look into their plight, their plight, and work on it and ask for the support of other members of Congress,” Sotto added.
The issue maybe far from over as Sotto’s ad lib  is still getting statements from individuals and groups who are lambasting him over his “joke.”
Here is one sent to us by Kate Lappin, regional coordinator of
Asia Pacific Forum On Women Law And Development (APWLD).
“The recent misogynist attacks on Secretary Judy Taguiwalo and Secretary Gina Lopez by the Philippine Commission of Appointments are alarming signs of institutional sexism.
“The Committee’s questioning of Secretary Taguiwalo’s marital status implies that unmarried mothers have no right to participate in public life. It is insulting to an individual who has dedicated her life to advancing the rights of women, prioritized ending corruption and consistently acted in the interest of marginalized communities.
“The Committee’s failure to confirm Secretary Lopez to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources after raising 'controversial policies, and alleged incompetence and being weird or eccentric' is at complete odds with Secretary Lopez’s distinguished career as an environmental activist who has confronted powerful extractive industries, in a country where women are suffering from the environmental devastation caused by mining industry.
“These malicious and sexist attacks serve the purpose of protecting the interests of powerful corporations over local communities, and are indicative of political systems designed to advance the interests of a few powerful men and the ruling elite.

 “There are only 18 percent women in political leadership positions across the region and it is quite rare for them to represent the interests of people, particularly women. Secretaries Taguiwalo and Lopez are the leaders we deserve and need, but attacks like these create an atmosphere that deter them from leadership positions.”


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