Kauupo lang ni Ormoc City Mayor Richard Gomez, heto’t iniintriga na siya at pilit na isinasangkot sa isyu ng droga.
Isa kasi si Mayor Richard sa pinangalanan ni CIDG Region 8 Chief Inspector Leo Laraga na protector diumano ng drug pushers ng Eastern Visayas at aktor-mayor na diumano ay kabilang sa grupo ni Kerwin Espinosa, anak ng napaslang na si Mayor Rolando Espinosa, Sr. ng Albuera, Leyte.
Sa black propaganda laban sa bagong halal na mayor, pumutok ang istorya last Thursday, November 10, during the Senate hearing on public order na sumabay naman habang wala rito sa bansa ang mag-asawa Nasa London sila to represent the Philippines para sa isang tourism convention.
Personally, kilala namin si Mayor Goma. Bago pa man siya nahalal bilang mayor ng Ormoc, naging chairman siya ng Mamamayan Ayaw sa Droga (MAD) Foundation at Kabataan Iwas Droga sa Tulong ng Sports (K.I.D.S. Foundation). Patunay lang kung ano ang background ni Mayor Richard bago pa man siya naging punong-bayan ng Ormoc.
Alam mo na may malisya ang balita. Isang pagmamanipula ito ng kanyang mga kalaban sa pulitika. Sa kanyang official statement na ipinadala sa PEP, isang entertainment news portal, pahayag ni Mayor Richard, “I’m sorry to disappoint my political opponents. I have never been been and will never be involved in drugs. And no one can pin me down on an accusation so baseless and ridiculous. It I laughable.”
Sa inilabas ni Mayor Richard na official statement through his social media account, aniya, “Controversy is nothing new to me. As an actor in the world of show business for over 3 decades, I have had to deal with all sorts of controversy and sometimes-bad publicity, but this is the first time that my name has been dragged into an issue involving drugs.
“I initially did not want to dignify this with an answer but given that this is politically-motivated and very malicious, I am speaking up.
“I have been an anti-drug advocate all my life. I spearheaded a massive anti-drug campaign back in the 90’s, way before it became a fad, before most everyone wanted to join the bandwagon.
“I am sorry to disappoint my political opponents but I have never been and I will never be involved in drugs and no one can pin me down on an accusation so baseless and ridiculous it is almost laughable.
“In fact, I ran on a very strong anti-drug platform, which the constituency resonated with, and which got me elected as Mayor of ORMOC City, a place so infected by drugs for many years. I also openly supported President Rodrigo Roa Duterte during the 2016 elections precisely because of his strong and serious stance on drugs.
“To fight drugs and bring change is the reason I ran, and because the people saw how serious I was about it is the reason I won.
“Do not drag me into this circus, I was never part of it. I will never be part of it. I urge the legislators to dig deeper into this. Someone is trying to muddle the issue.
“I have asked my lawyers to file a case against Major Jovie Espenido, a cop beholden to my political opponents, who has attempted many times to besmirch my name. It is unfortunate that he was assigned to Albuera, Leyte, giving him control over the late Mayor Espinosa, whom I am sure he prevailed upon to impute my character and those of other equally innocent officials.”
By RK VillaCorta