Is it time to take to the streets?


This is the question being asked on both sides of the “Aquino, step down” debate.

Since August 27 when the first assembly convened in Lipa by the National Transformation Council called on President B. S. Aquino 3rd to step down, many have been wondering how they could ever make this particular omelet without breaking any eggs.

This is a power game, and it is not enough to show that Aquino has destroyed the Constitution and the moral order. He has to be pushed physically in order to give up the power he has so thoroughly misused.

But the Council does not believe in using violent means to force him out. Military intervention is not an option, unless the Armed Forces of the Philippines acts as one to carry out its duty as “protector of the people and the State.” This makes the problem even bigger.

And yet, five NTC-convened assemblies and five mutually reinforcing declarations after Lipa city, it has become clear that only an irresistible physical force could make PNoy step down. And so far this is what the assemblies convened by the Council have done:

In Cebu on Oct. 1, the assembly called on the Council to pursue all lawful means to compel Aquino to step down at the soonest possible time, and to immediately organize an alternative government.

In Butuan on Nov. 11, the assembly noted the increasingly severe deterioration of the moral, social and political fabric of the nation and called on the Council to speed up its effort to compel Aquino to relinquish his position so that the earnest work of national transformation could begin.

In Angeles on Dec. 3, the assembly adopted as its own all the previous declarations, and called for a stepped-up campaign for regime and systems change.

In Davao on Dec. 5, the assembly declared that “the time to compel Aquino to step down is now, and that the Council should then embark upon a nationwide mobilization effort to transform its vision into a reality.”

In Davao, before some 4,000 delegates from all over Mindanao, a call to action was made by NTC member Norberto Gonzales, former defense secretary and national security adviser. For the first time, we heard a proposal for the use of “people power.” Lipa Archbishop Ramon Arguelles quickly qualified this to mean “prayer power.”

And in the city of General Santos yesterday (Dec. 16), the assembly declared that the “Rubicon” has been crossed, the NTC must now involve the general population in its campaign for regime and systems change. It was a ringing endorsement of people power.

Prior to the Angeles assembly, former Congressman Jose Cojuangco Jr. of Tarlac, the youngest brother of the late President Corazon Cojuangco Aquino, and PNoy’s uncle, personally called on Aquino to step down, echoing the position of the Council, of which he does not claim to be a member.

This apparently triggered some kind of “turbulence” within the Cojuangco clan. But it was dutifully suppressed by the conscript media, and there was no official Palace reaction to it, aside from a visibly heightened intelligence monitoring of the Council and some of its known members.

Aquino himself seemed unperturbed, confident that these were but a few political “romantics” who still invoked “high principles” in the face of today’s dog-eat-dog politics, against the “14 million or so votes” he got from the rigged precinct count optical scan machine in the 2010 elections.

And last week, Malacañang announced the “results” of an alleged survey conducted by one of the more notorious propaganda pollsters, showing a reported uptick in Aquino’s “approval and trust ratings.” As usual, the conscript media never bothered to ask the fraudsters the following questions: who commissioned the alleged survey, why was it conducted (assuming it was, in fact, conducted), who paid for it, what questions were asked, in what manner or sequence were they asked, who, how many, and from what parts of the archipelago were asked, what was the margin of error used, and so on and so forth.

The thoroughly unexamined “survey”was screamed as a banner headline in the print propaganda media, then regurgitated by radio and television, and text messaging. But there was no visible explanation for it. There is obviously none.

Given the continuing crimes of the presidency, there is every reason for Aquino’s ratings to plunge to the very depths of the ocean floor, in an honest poll. He has serially and with utter disdain violated not only the Constitution but also the basic norms of the moral order.

These crimes have caused great suffering among our people. Only the Forbes magazine-listed dollar billionaires and their cronies who are making so much money while the rest of the nation sinks in unspeakable poverty and squalor seem “happy” that he is still there.

In complete defiance of the Supreme Court, which struck down the pork-barrel system as unconstitutional and ordered the prosecution of all those involved in the manipulation of the Priority Development Assistance Fund and the Disbursement Acceleration Program, Aquino had Congress pass his P2.6 trillion spending bill, with P1.3 trillion in presidential pork, while claiming to have junked the pork-barrel system altogether.

The term “savings” was also redefined to allow Aquino to play around with the budget anytime, at will. This is a naked attempt by legal subterfuge to erase the crime which Aquino committed when he illegally transferred appropriations from projects created by Congress into projects which he himself created under the DAP without the authority of Congress.

The House also railroaded “emergency powers” to enable Aquino to authorize emergency purchases of power-related equipment without the usual public bidding required by law. The Senate, through Senator Serge Osmena, has put a temporary brake on it, we can’t say for how long, but some people close to Aquino are said to have already brought in and warehoused the “generator sets” that would be sold to the public, and have acquired highly polluting power plants discarded by other countries, with the promise of “sovereign guarantee” from the Aquino government.

This promises to be more punishing than when we granted emergency power to then-President Ramos to cope with the electric power crisis he had inherited from the Cory Aquino administration. We have not yet fully recovered from the scandalous costs of the power barges and independent power units acquired during that period, and here we go again.

It is highly doubtful Aquino could have survived this long, were he in any of the countries recently visited by the Arab Spring. But because we are Filipinos, and this is the Philippines, Aquino seems to believe he could get away with anything, and many among us would still swallow the lie that his stock his rising, instead of sinking or sunk.

Perhaps the only way to put this to the test is for people to go out into the streets, and show him he never had “14 million votes,” as claimed, and does not have them now.


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  1. We need a leader who will rise to the situation so others may follow. The NTC can set a date for a simultaneous rally in all the areas where it has convened. It also needs a secretariat where the movement can be tallied, synchronized, and ask for support from the different movements, and associations.

  2. Hindi makukuha iyan sa panay salita at panulat ng English, kailangan kumilos kayo pangunahan ni Norberto Gonzales at Kit Tatad taglay ang mga tabak ni Andres Bonifacio, simulan ninyo ang kilusan sa Bonifacio Circle sa Balintawak. Panay salita kulang sa gawa. Matitiyak ko dahil sa kagalingan ninyong lahat makakakuha kayo ng maraming Pilipino sa tapat ng EDSA Shrine. Itaon ninyo sa pagbisita ni Pope Francis, yayamang din wala na si Cardinal Sin at Cory Aquino. Naririto kami sa likod ng mga saya ninyo. Natitiyak ko na bubuti ang kalagayan ng Pilipinas kung kayo ang mamumono. Matitigil na ang mga bagyo at ibang kalamidad, dadami ang trabajo, wala ng magiging mahirap, wala ng krimen, at marami pang kabutihan. Hindi na namin maantay ang inyong pag take over sa gobierno. Mahuhusay talaga kayo.

  3. Suggestion for the NTC: Please commission a separate independent survey. Magbayad din kayo ng survey firm na gagawa ng survey para malaman ng bayan ang totoo. Ang sws at false asia surveys ay unreliable!

  4. My 2 Pesos worth of Opinion. A repetition of the EDSA I & II Street Uprising won’t happen. In ’86 and in ’01, the OLIGARCHS and certain elements from the Church supported the mass action. The OLIGARCHS encouraged employees from their various companies to take to the streets. In my own personal view, I don’t see that happening today because these same OLIGARCHS are enjoying and continue to enjoy the status quo.

  5. NTC has no moral ascendancy. These are the people who supported the past illegitimate administrations. Tatad supported Marcos. Pnoy has a mandate and NTC has none.

  6. Mr.Tatad sa susunod na mag speech ka thru NTC magtagalog ka puwede gaya ni Arcbishop Arguelles.Kaya talo kayo ng Abnoy sa rhetorica at pang-uuto ng masa,mas naiintindihan kasi sya ng masa kasi tagalog salita.You dont need to show off your eloquence to ordinary people when it comes to public speeches lalo na majority eh mahihirap at salat sa edukasyon.Ano pang saysay kung hindi nman maiintindihan ang mga sinasabi mo.No wonder walang masyadong support.

  7. Melchor vergara on

    if and when action spills to the streets, it must not end with the removal of the BS but also his lackeys in both houses of congress, as they are also illegally elected by the rigged PCOS machines……

  8. I have to earn my meager daily wage first before I decide on taking to the streets. I have several mouths to feed. Mubiti sana kung sarili ko lang ang pinaghahanap buhay ko.

  9. P. on

    Big coordinated rallies in the different major cities throughout the country will get the attention of the people about the corruption in this administration. These rallies will also call the attention of the people to the “writings on the wall”.

  10. concerned citizen on

    How I wish that would happen, Mr. Tatad, but it seems to me that many Filipinos have thrown in the towel and are just refusing to see the truth about this administration’s crimes because they no longer want to go to the streets and just want to wait for 2016. I tell my friends that we can’t even rely on the 2016 elections as the stage is being set for its rigging in favor of the administration candidate. Frankly, I don’t know what has happened to the Filipinos. Could it be that the conscript media, which so many Filipinos rely on, has succeeded in keeping us in the dark about the true goings-on in our country, or could it be that so many Filipinos have been corrupted by consumerism, hedonism, and social-media-sponsored individualism and escapism that they no longer care about what happens to our country? Could it be the “bahala na” attitude all over again? God bless our country!

  11. Leodegardo Pruna on

    There is no need to go to the streets. A recount of the votes counted by the hocus-PCOS would be enough and in order. God bless the Philippines.

  12. Roldan Guerrero on

    Somebody must initiate it and we will follow! We now must put to an end for this destructive regime and start prosecuting Pnoy and his allies, the crimes they did!

  13. Indeed, it has really come to that. People must really go out into the streets and show this abnoy he cannot stay on. The struggle has come to a head. It’s either the Abnoy stays on and damn the people; or let the people survive by pushing the Abnoy out. The survival of the country and the extinction of the Abnoy have become mutually exclusive.

    I agree, the Abnoy “has to be pushed physically in order to give up the power he has so thoroughly misused.”

  14. History has proven true:
    “If you repeat a lie often enough, it becomes POLITICS.”
    And for some, money in the bank.

  15. Hindi ko alam kung sino sa Aquino at NTC ang hindi napasokan ng masamang hangin!!
    Lahat ng pangalan nakasulat dito ay wala akong matandaan na nagawa nila na matutuwa ang sambayanan!
    At ngayon narito sila upang palitan ng malinis na daan ang tuwid na daan!
    Bagong slogan!
    Kahit sabihing hindi ko gusto at nasusuka na ako kay Aquino!
    Wala pa rin akong karapatan baliin ang batas na ang bawat pangulo ay May 6 na taon para manilbihan!
    May batas para parusahan ang gumawa ng mali at iyan ang dapat ihanda ng mga taong inaakala nila na masama ang ginawa ng gobyerno ni Aquino!
    Ito ang civilisadong paraan!
    Walang tao akong nabasa dito na malinis at walang ginawang masama!
    Maghitay at magtyaga!
    Ito ang pinaka-mabuti at payapang pagsalin ng kapangyarihan!
    Wag ninyo ng ipilit ang balak ninyo! Wag nyo ng guluhin ang nangyayari!
    70% ng tao ay walang tiwala
    Sa mga taong kasama sa groupo NTC! Hindi masama ang hangarin! Ang masama yung magtataguyod nito na halos kilalang walang nagawang kahangahanga sa tao!
    Isip-Isip pa baka maging Syria at Iraq ang pinas!!!