EULOGY: “ARMM will be a game-changer”

MALACANANG (MindaNews/25 August) — “They always say that ARMM’s problems are too difficult to solve. But we believe ARMM’s transformation can be the perfect template for the entire country. The battlecry will soon be, “if it can be done in ARMM, it can be done anywhere.”

Ito ang mga katagang iniwan sa amin ni Sec. Jesse Robredo sa kanyang pananalita sa turnover ceremonies ng ARMM noong December 22, 2011. Parang kelan lang ito. Malinaw sa amin ang mensahe ng kanyang talumpati. Malinaw sa amin ang kanyang hamon.

But life’s a swift thing. And just as we are starting to gain results in reforming ARMM since we started the ARMM transitional government eight months ago, Sec. Jesse passed away. We can just console ourselves with the thought that Sec. Jesse heard and was happy about our success in our ghost busting efforts in ARMM. I hope this was his last happy thoughts about ARMM.

Maigsi lang ang panahon ng aming pagkakilanlan sa isa’t isa ni Sec. Jesse. Pormal kong nakilala si Sec.Jesse nung ako’y sumanib sa Liberal Party at tumakbo bilang Gobernador ng Basilan. Pero kahit bago pa man kami pormal na nagkakilala, alam ko na kung sino at anong klaseng lider ang isang Jesse Robredo. Ika nga, his reputation precedes him. Sec.Jesse is popularly known as a non-traditional politician, a leader who introduced innovative reforms in government, a dedicated public servant and a model in good governance. Admittedly, his concepts on transparency and accountability in governance had become my ideals in government and public service.

Mas lumalim ang aming pagkakaibigan nung panahong kinakampanya namin ang postponement ng ARMM Elections. Si Sec. Jesse ang nanguna sa pangangasiwa sa pagtatatag ng transisyunal na pamahalaan sa ARMM. Sa proseso, merong pagkakataong hindi kami nagkakaintindihan, pero dahil taong prinsipyado, madali naming nalulutas ang mga gusot. Sa pamamagitan nito, mas naging mahigpit ang aming pagkakaibigan at mas tumaas ang pagrespeto namin sa isa’t isa. Naging mas madalas ang aming konsultahan at pagsasama sa iba’t ibang activities lalo na sa mga usaping peace and order sa mga LGUs ng ARMM. Sa maigsing panahon ng aming samahan, marami akong natutunan kay Sec.Jesse.

Kaya laking gulat at lungkot ko nang nabalitaan ko ang aksidenteng nangyari kay Sec.Jesse. Hindi ako makapaniwala, lalong lalo na na may nakaschedule pa kaming dadaluhang PPOC meeting sa Basilan. But all of us bow to the will of God.

“Inaa lillaahi Wa inaa illayhi raji’oon” – to Allah we belong and to Him shall we return.

To Sec. Jesse, we offer this prayer:”O Allah! Ease upon him, his matters and make lightwork for him whatever comes hereafter and honour him with Your meeting and make that which he has gone to, better than that which he came out from.”

In your memory Sec. Jesse, we dedicate the ARMM Reforms. Manahimik man ang iyong boses, pero mananatiling aalingaw-ngaw sa aming isipan ang iyong talumpati noon, kung saan sinabi mong:

“ARMM will be a game-changer.
When the history of ARMM is written, we want the scorecard to show, Transparency and Accountability: 100, Fear and Force: 0.”

We will be victorious Sec. Jesse, tayo’y magwawagi!

Paalam, kaibigan at kasamang Jessie…maraming salamat at hanggang sa muli.

(Mujiv Hataman, OIC Governor of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, delivered this eulogy during the Liberal Party tribute to Secretary Jesse Robredo at the Kalayaan Hall of Malacanang Saturday evening, August 25)

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