Top banking non-event

The future isn’t just something that happens. It’s a brutal force, with a great sense of humor, that’ll steamroll you if you’re not watching.

—Bill Murray in Aloha

No, it did not come to pass.

The highly anticipated and much desired appointment of what could have been the first woman Banko Sentral governor did not eventuate.

“Beware the Ides of March,” the Bard of Avon famously said.

But the tides of March marched on instead for embattled Budget Sec. Benjamin Diokno, who was appointed BSP chief by President Duterte in a breath-taking emergency extraction from the Department of Budget and Management’s lofty perch, which has been the target of serial attacks by congressional leaders.

When ailing BSP Gov. Nestor Espenilla Jr. departed this order of earthly being, former BSP chiefs, banking industry leaders, and career BSP officials and employees were unanimous in saying that an “insider” would be named as the next monetary mogul.

Career BSP executives who rose from the ranks were generally expected to be short-listed and eventually nominated to the top BSP post.

In fact, two women BSP deputy chiefs were leading the pack along with a senior male deputy governor.

Also said to be in contention was a former Cabinet secretary, member of the Monetary Board, and Veteran banker.

Alas, the President did not even bother to look at the shortlist but instead picked his choice from his own Cabinet in the person of the Budget secretary.

And so happened the biggest banking non-event of the year—the appointment of the first female BSP governor.

Quite curiously, the country and the rest of the world were celebrating International Women’s Month.

To be sure, the two leading female contenders for the BSP governorship have the long experience and vast competence to run the country’s banking and monetary affairs.

But presidential reckoning deemed the time for appointing a monetary czarina as not opportune.

Apparently, the era of gender equality would still take a long time coming to the corridors of monetary power within the BSP.

The new BSP governor would hold office for a fixed term of six years, which means that he would serve longer than the President.

This also means the main contenders for the top post would have to sit out the next six years and wait for the next President to consider them for the job.

Again, this is if the appointing power decides to name a new BSP chief when Diokno’s term expires. By the way, the President can extend his term for another six years.

Retired BSP governor Amando Tetangco Jr., Espenilla’s immediate predecessor, served 12 years in office on account of a term extension granted by the President.

Behold God’s glory

and seek His mercy.

Pause and pray, people.