Sabi ni randy david
- From: "mojave dessert" <socculturefilipino@xxxxxxxxx>
- Date: 21 Jun 2006 00:24:26 -0700
BY WENDELL VIGILIA
A UNIVERSITY of the Philippines professor yesterday warned that any
attempt to "kill" a new impeachment complaint against President Arroyo
could drive the people to the streets.
"The new impeachment complaint may be killed again by Mrs. Arroyo's
technicians of opportunism even before it could be heard. If this
happens and our people don't get angry, then maybe it's time to
quit and have our heads examined," Randy David said in forum sponsored
by the Concerned Citizens at the Manila Polo Club Monday night.
David was among those arrested illegally when Arroyo declared
Presidential Proclamation 1017 which placed the country under a state
of national emergency last February to thwart an alleged plot by
Leftists, Rightists and members of the political opposition to topple
her from power.
David said the impeachment complaint "is the only constitutional
procedure left to us if we wish to put a closure, once and for all, to
the political crisis spawned by the fraudulent 2004 election."
"If, perchance, we can persuade our people - especially the young -
to once more take up the challenge of political involvement as we go
through the process of explaining the case against Mrs. Arroyo, I think
we shall have contributed to restoring our people's confidence in the
nation as a whole," he said.
He said various people's groups will file the complaint on June 26 at
the House without any "illusion" that the complaint could muster the
constitutional requirement of one-third of members of Congress to act
as endorsers of the complaint.
David recalled the last days of the President Ferdinand Marcos when he
was forced to call a snap election, where his post was contested by
Corazon Aquino, the widow of Sen. Benigno Aquino Jr.
"Marcos himself thought he could be president forever when he called
for a snap election. We all knew he would rig the election, but for our
people, it didn't matter. They would use the election to show how
angry they were. Thus the snap election became the nursery of people
power," he said.
David said the current situation where Arroyo's presidency is clouded
with questions on the rigging of the 2004 election "is not so
"As in 1985-1986, we may create the constituency for reform in the very
process of opposing the existing government. We learn more about
ourselves or what has become of us as we take our institutions
seriously," he said.
"I think we should begin to regard our actions as experiments - as
attempts to find out something about ourselves. We hope to see the new
leaders emerge from all corners of our country as we focus on the
failings of the present leadership," he added.
David said while impeachment was the only "decent" option last year, it
was "cynically exploited by an indecent presidency." "
"With the connivance of legal mercenaries masquerading as luminaries,
she (Arroyo) and her allies in the House successfully killed the
complaint before it could even reach first base. She personally phoned
every single congressman she thought would listen to her. She talked to
their spouses, to their siblings, and to their patrons. It wasn't
their sense of justice that she was appealing to, but rather their
opportunism. She knew, more than any other politician of this
generation, that everyone has a need, a weakness, and a price. And she
was prepared to pay the asking price," he said.
David said that if the setting had been Japan or South Korea, "where
personal honor is still highly valued, Mrs. Arroyo would have long
bowed out of power in shame for disgracing her office."
"She would have drunk poison, or thrown herself into the murky waters
of the Pasig. If this is Germany or Great Britain, where law and
politics are taken seriously, the party in power would have instantly
and decisively distanced itself from its discredited leader as an act
of mortification if not of self-preservation. If this were the US, she
would have been convicted for obstruction of justice on multiple
counts, and hounded out of the presidency," he said.
Raul Pangalangan, former dean of the UP College of Law, said since the
drafters of the 1987 Constitution did not resolve the issue of whether
the impeachment process can be considered both political and judicial,
"it has been left to the judgment of the House and the Senate. Will
this lead us to the dead-end?" he said.
He said the President "got away with the slimmest of technicalities" by
apologizing to the nation without admitting that she was the one
speaking with former election commissioner Virgilio Garcillano in the
"Hello Garci" recordings.
"It is in the most literal interpretation of the rules that she
(Arroyo) escaped. Here, we are facing a very awkward situation where
she (Arroyo) wasn't in the tapes but is protecting her right to
privacy," he said, eliciting laughter.
Defense Secretary Avelino Cruz assured the President's critics that
the military will stay away from any political activity.
"I keep on saying that the soldiers should be professional. They should
be insulated from politics. The soldiers should not meddle in politics
and politics should not meddle to (the affairs of) soldiers," he said.
Cruz said the defense department and AFP have not any monitored any
plan from the military ranks to intervene in the political activity by
staging uprisings or the like.
"We are concentrated on our primary job of fighting internal security
threats," said Cruz.
The militant Bagong Alyansang Makabayan will mobilize victims,
survivors and families of victims of political killings under the
Arroyo administration to sign the new impeachment complaint.
Bayan secretary general Renato Reyes said the number of human rights
victims under Arroyo will make the list of impeachment complainants
"very, very long."
"From June 26 onwards, human rights victims will come forward to sign
the new impeachment complaint against Mrs. Arroyo. This is one way by
which the victims and their families can make the President accountable
for her indifference to, if not tacit approval of, the continuing
political killings," he said.
The human rights group Karapatan says that there are more than 600
victims of extra-judicial killings since Arroyo assumed power in 2001.
Of this number, more than 300 are political activists or supporters of
Reyes said Arroyo's failure to resolve the issue of political
killings may fall under "betrayal of public trust."
"An impeachment complaint that would make Mrs. Arroyo accountable for
gross human rights violations is worth supporting, insofar as it is a
venue for the victims to seek justice and expose the crimes of the
president," Reyes said.
Bayan and Karapatan are coordinating with party-list organizations
Bayan Muna, Anakpawis and Gabriela in trying to contact the family
members of the victims.
"The victims' families are spread all over the country. We will do
our best to bring them to Manila so that they could personally sign the
complaint," Reyes said.
Malacañang officials have begun to clam up as the filing of the new
impeachment complaint nears.
Presidential chief of staff Michael Defensor said all questions on the
impeachment case will have to be referred to Press Secretary Ignacio
Told that Bunye does not want to react on the issue, Defensor said:
"Ah, ayaw niyang patulan. Iyon din ang reaction ko."
Presidential political adviser Gabriel Claudio said there is no gag
He said Malacañang remains confident in confronting the issues against
President Arroyo, "most of which are rehashed and recycled anyway." -
With Victor Reyes, JP Lopez and Jocelyn Montemayor
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