Military Rebels Say No to Cha-cha

The first three generals were mentioned in the controversial “Hello Garci” tapes. The tapes allegedly contain wiretapped conversations between Macapagal-Arroyo and former Comelec Commissioner Virgilio Garcillano discussing how they can ensure the victory of the former in the 2004 presidential elections.

Gudani, a retired Marine general, appeared in a Senate inquiry last year testifying that he was one of the generals mentioned in the “Hello Garci” tapes. In the same testimony, he denied that he was close to the opposition as mentioned in the tapes. Gudani’s testimony allegedly triggered the president’s promulgation of Executive Order 464 (EO 464), a gag order on all public officials to refrain from giving testimonies in congressional investigations without approval by the president. The Supreme Court, in a decision last April 20, declared significant provisions of EO 464 as unconstitutional.

“Instead of looking into the possible involvement of military officers in electoral fraud as revealed by the Hello Garci tapes, the Mayuga fact-finding team only made a general evaluation of the conduct of the armed forces during the elections,” the source said. “The investigation avoided looking into the culpability of those who cheated for the president,” the source added.

The Mayuga Report exacerbated the feeling that the armed forces were used to cheat during the May 2004 elections, the source said. “For idealistic officers who do not want to be used, lalo lang silang nag-init,” (They felt more angry.) the source added.

“Nagamit na nga sila sa eleksyon, pati sa cover-up ginagamit pa sila,” (They were used during the elections and now they are still being used for the cover up.) the source said.

The revelations of the Mayuga Report didn’t appease the restiveness of young military officers, the source said. “We can still expect things to happen. The fight for truth and justice is still on,” the source warned.

Despite reports of a crackdown on the rebel military officers, the source said their ranks have become stronger because the sentiment of the people is in their favor. The source cited the March 8-14 survey of the Social Weather Station (SWS) that showed that 36 percent of the respondents favored a military coup against Macapagal-Arroyo. The survey was done a week after the president placed the country under a state of national emergency through Presidential Proclamation 1017 (PP 1017) issued last Feb 24, the same day military rebels planned to withdraw support from the president. (

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