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DON VICENTE RAMA, FATHER OF THE CEBU CITY CHARTER

 

Don_Vicente_Rama_edited100(Cebu City Public Information Office)
In celebration of the 75th Charter Day Anniversary of Cebu City, people remembered the man who gave Cebuanos the reason to make February 24 a special day.  The late Vicente Rama, a writer, editor, and a publisher before he ventured politics.
He was given the Christian name Vicente in honor of St. Vincent Ferrer, also in Latin form Vincere, which means to conquer.
Don Vicente Rama, known as “The Father of Cebu City”, landed in the limelight in Cebu’s political history when he authored Act No. 58, creating Cebu City as a Chartered City which was approved on October 20, 1936.
Most famous as Nyor Inting, he was born in Cebu City on June 6, 1887. He was married to Catalina Genson, with whom he had thirteen children. As a father, he was a disciplinarian, sometimes even an unrelenting one.
He never used his government position to protect any of his children or relatives from any violation of the law.
There was an instance when his son was arrested by the police for public disturbance when he picked up a fistfight in the streets, Don Vicente allowed him to stay overnight in the cell to teach him a lesson. Even his own son was not exempted in the law.
He attended his college in Colegio de San Carlos and was marked “Excellent” in almost all his subjects except in languages, where he earned consistent marks of “Sobresaliente” (above excellent or outstanding).
He aspired for priesthood but unfortunately his parents’ marriage certificate was a strict requirement of Canon Law, instead he was later sent to Manila to study law.
Among his honors and awards were Outstanding Alumnus, Colegio de San Carlos along with Don Sergio Osmena, Don Mariano Jesus Cuenco, Hon Fortunato Borromeo, Hon. Felimon Sotto and Hon. Manual Briones.
He was nationally known as colossus of Cebu Journalism, one of the Brightest lawmakers of his time, the successful crusader against cedula, Father of Cebu City.
Rama’s political career was launched in 1915 when he assumed office as a municipal councilor of Cebu. Thereafter he became representative of the third District during the terms starting 1922, 1925 and 1934.
He was a member of the first National Assembly in 1935 and in 1938 he was Mayor of Cebu City.
It was a stormy political path for Nyor Inting. His opponents and enemies never rested to destroy him even in his fight for the approval of the Charter of Cebu City. He was even opposed by some Cebu political leaders and some organizations at that time.
They went as far as recommending to then President Quezon to “kill” or veto the bill but President Quezon was fully aware of their hidden agenda and signed on 20 October 1936 the Charter denominated as Commonwealth Act No. 58.
The concept of Local Autonomy is enshrined in both the 1973 and 1987 Constitutions of the Philippine Local Autonomy is indispensable not only to strengthen democracy, but to empower the local units of government and promote local and national progress and prosperity.
In review of his writing career, he started off as a staff member of El Precursor, then as editor of Kauswagan. In 1915, he then published and edited the newspaper Nueva Fuerza which later evolved into Bag-ong Kusog. This functioned as a clearing house of information, opinion and grievance whether directly in the regular columns, editorials and reports or indirectly through the literature. The last issue of this was in 1941.
He did not stop writing though, and produced the novels Donya Marcosa in 1947 and Ang Silot ni Bathala in 1948.
Nyor Inting died on Christmas eve of 1956 at the age of 69 but his passionate love for public service, his indomitable spirit, his Cebuano humility and amazing capacity to value what is fair and what is true will always be remembered as his legacy as a politician has been handed down to his descendants with his grandson, Michael Lopez Rama as the incumbent Mayor of the City of Cebu.



Last Updated on Thursday, 08 March 2012 11:45  

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