THE impunity being enjoyed by President BS Aquino The Last and his Yellow minions should end once a new administration and a new Congress are installed in 2016.
Malacañang has been ignoring the Supreme Court decisions against the Disbursement Acceleration Program and the pork barrel because it believes that the President is the supreme authority on what is legal and what is not. Misuse and abuse of government funds have gone unabated because there’s no opposition strong enough to stop these. This problem is exacerbated by Yellow media that echo everything emanating from Pasig.
The electorate has to stop these things – and the next administration and next Congress should see to it that those responsible will be held accountable.
There will be no accountability as long as die-hard Liberals will hold sway again. And among the die-hards, the most prominent in the Senate is reelectionist Sen. Teofisto Guingona 3rd, chairman of the blue ribbon committee that lost its luster under his chairmanship.
Guingona was named head of this panel to serve as rear guard against any charges that might be levelled against the Aquino administration. In my decades-long coverage of the Senate, I had never seen a chairman of the blue ribbon as subservient to Malacañang as Guingona. Early in his chairmanship, he had already declared that charges of anomalies similar to those made against the previous administration would no longer be possible against the Aquino administration with its “tuwid na daan.”
He was fast in making conclusions on charges against alleged misuse of the pork barrel by opposition senators but he has steadfastly refused to invite Budget Secretary Butch Abad for details on the use of “pork” and the DAP during the Aquino administration. To this date, he still has to start an inquiry into the allegedly missing Malampaya funds reportedly worth billions of pesos although Sen. Jinggoy Estrada has been calling for the probe about two years ago.
Perhaps, Guingona will make the motions of conducting an inquiry into the Malampaya fund but with Congress on campaign mode, he could give as excuse the limited time in making a complete inquiry. The only way for the Senate to find the whole truth about this and other questionable use of government funds is to keep Guingona out of the Senate. He has already done enough damage to this institution.
The senatorial slate of the administration has some candidates who are independent-minded, like Sen. Ralph Recto and former Sen. Ping Lacson. I’m sure that should full details on anomalies under the present administration will come to light, Recto and Lacson won’t stand in the way of a legislative inquiry.
Incidentally, I find it disconcerting that Sen. Bongbong Marcos, a candidate for vice president, has declared his opposition to any move to bring charges against the Aquino administration. Erap Estrada was charged with plunder; Aquino is orchestrating the charges against his predecessor, so why shouldn’t Aquino be accountable after his term if warranted?
Oh yes, who believes BS Aquino when he said that the Philippines could be a First World country should his reforms be continued? Under his watch, Indonesia, Vietnam, Cambodia and even Burma have overtaken the Philippines in terms of foreign direct investments. Their tourist arrivals are even more numerous than the Philippines’. He should first crow about catching up with these neighboring countries before dreaming of turning the Philippines into a First World country.
If only BS Aquino The Last would find the time to meet rice farmers, he’ll stop bragging about the country’s economy. In Lupao, Nueva Ecija, my hometown, a kilo of palay now costs merely P13. How can our farmers survive at such a low price of their produce? Note that unlike other goods, the seller of palay can’t dictate the price that he wants.
The administration may point the finger at rice traders but the real culprit is the excessive importation of rice by the National Food Authority. In the main crop last year, rice traders were buying palay up to P20 a kilo, much higher than the support price of NFA.
Very few rice farmers qualify for bank loans so they borrow from financiers. There have been calls for government subsidy for fertilizers, herbicides and pesticides but these calls have fallen on deaf ears. The woes of farmers are exacerbated by the lashing of numerous typhoons. Yet, despite acknowledgements of the importance of agriculture, farmers don’t get as much attention from the administration as its billionaire friends and financiers.
Hopefully, the next administration won’t be a clone of Aquino and give higher priority to those who have less in life.