The French word Potpourri (noun) is defined as (1) a mixture of flowers, herbs and spices that is usually kept in a jar and used scent; (2) a miscellaneous collection: MEDLEY—(a) a potpourri of the best songs and sketches –Current Biography.

       Examples (a) The festival was a musical potpourri—performances included folk, jass, blues, and rap music. (b) a potpourri of hit songs from the last ten years.

       First known use of Potpourri was in the middle of the 18th century (1749), in the meaning defined at sense 1. (Source: Merriam-Webster. Since 1828).

       In Mr. Sabawzki’s version, Potpourri concerns refer to any events—good or bad, previous and recent ones, that have temporary, serious and lasting impacts on people here in our province, region,  country and the whole world in general. It may pertain to any or all of the following–climate change, coal and all forms of mining in Catanduanes.  Arguably, this mining concept include this unique, disgusting version ofmining: “MINE IS MINE. YOURS IS STILL MINE.”

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         The SP Shade of Solomonic Wisdom I mentioned in the previous write-up is meant to be like this: “In what could be construed as forcible response to the immediate and massive condemnation by multi-sector groups in the province and elsewhere through various platforms,  the Sangguniang Panlalawigan led by Vice Governor Peter C. Cua as presiding officer, in the process,  was saved from further embarrassment and humiliation.

          The PBMs who were alarmed by this avalanche/massive bashing/condemnation from people of all walks of life was made to choose: (1)“LIVELIHOOD VERSUS ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION”; (2) LIVELIHOOD VERSUS FACTS/SCIENCE AND RULE OF LAW,”and  (3) LIVELIHOOD OF MINORITY VERSUS ENVIRONMEMTAL INTEGRITY/PROTECTION OF THE PROVINCE”.

            What the honorable members of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan failed to consider with deeper analysis were the possible repercussions  of  the requests made through a resolution a resolution (?) by lone barangay leader for one year coal mining operation. THERE GOES THE RUB. THERE GOES THE BIG BLUNDER.  Entonces, due to lack/lapse of judgment, they took that request for  one year moratorium , “HOOK, LINE AND SINKER” not only for that barangay but the entire province. SUS GINOO!  Coincidentally or was it providentially, then PB who requested such resolution unfortunately lost in the BSKE last October 30, 2023.

       Be that as it may, I’m constrained to echo  these questions raised by some neutral observers: (1) “Were there big personalities behind such requests? (2) Why were Mayor Cesar Robles , Vice Mayor Alvin Atencia and Sangguniang Members not consulted and/or informed before such request were forwarded to the two SP members who did not do their homework.

        Sad to say, all the veteran legislslators,  except one did not, fall into the trap of crafting, poorly analyzed piece of legislation. In their supposed to be last hurrah as Ex-Officio Members, the duo failed miserably. Nadamay pa lugod you mga beterano, tahudan nang mga lehislador.

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          The proactive, visionary, working president of the Catanduanes State Univeristy (CatSU), DR. PATRICK ALAIN T. AZANZA, showed its world-class status as the University’s tophoncho—highest academic leader and CEO—when he hosted the FIRST EVER PUBLIC FORUM dubbed “MINING IN CATANDUANES: BOON OR BANE.”

            And he had to do it. WHY? CATSU, like the other 200 plus SUC serve  as advocates, bastion, depository,  and initiator of knowledge vis-à-vis its fourfold functions of instruction, research, extensions and production.

            The public forum galvanized the anti-mining participants to denounce the adverse impacts of coal mining in the province based on the testimonies of experts, scientists and environmentalists-ecologists. MINING IS BANE IN AN ISLAND PROVINCE LIKE CATANDUANES. The academicians, researchers, elected and religious leaders, CATSU studentry and leaders from Catanduanes Polytechnic Institute of Catanduanes (CPIC) and the Catanduanes Colleges made their collective decision—”NO TO MINING OF ALL FORMS IN THE ISLAND PROVINCE OF CATANDUANES.”

            With that successful half-day, 2:00-6:00 P.M. forum conducted by the CatSU administration, PRESIDENT PATRICK ALAIN T.  AZANZA is not guilty of TWO SINS—THE SIN OF COMMISSION AND SIN OMSIION. THE SAYING “ DAMNED  HE DO, AND DAMNED IF HE DON’T, is surely debatable but pointing towards PRESIDENT AZANZA’S FAVOR. EXCEPT THE NINCOOMPOPS, PAID HACKS AND BLIND FOLLOWERS. NO MORE! NO LESS!

                    Due to space and time constraints, other significant events, particularly  the highly successful “ 4TH PASALINGGAYA VIRAC 2023 BONANZA” sponsored by SORSOGON GOVERNOR BOBOY HAMOR and hosted/supported  by VIRAC  MAYOR  SAMUEL V. LAYNES, will be featured next issue.