Prelates to PGMA: Trash EO 464, Stop ‘Culture of Corruption’

BY NOEL SALES BARCELONA
Contributed to Bulatlat
February 26, 2008 – 11:51pm

The influential Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines or CBCP has called on Malacañang to trash the controversial Executive Order No. 464, which prevents government and military officials from testifying in congressional investigations; and to stop the culture of corruption, from “top to bottom.”

In the statement read over radio station dzMM, Abp.Angel N. Lagdameo, D.D. of Jaro, Iloilo, CBCP president, said the President must not hinder her Cabinet officials from speaking in the Senate’s investigation about the national broadband network (NBN) project. He said EO 464 should be scrapped.

According to the prelate, different sectors of the society have the right to know the truth about the controversial NBN deal, signed by the Chief Executive and China’s ZTE Corp.

He also reiterated the intensive campaign for the restoration of moral values among Filipinos and the stoppage of the rampant corruption in the government.

Prior to this, Tuguegarao Archbishop Diosdado Talamayan, Bishops Ramon Villena of Bayombong and Rodolfo Beltran of Bontoc-Lagawe urged the Department of Justice (DoJ) and the Ombudsman to honestly investigate the controversial deal.

In a news item published at the official website of the CBCP (http://www.cbcpnews.com/) last Feb. 17, they said the investigation must be conducted by persons who are honestly in search of the truth and not in pursuit of their own political ambitions.

The DoJ investigation on the NBN deal has been criticized as having been initiated with the intent of doing a whitewash on the issue.

Last Feb. 16, the Ombudsman summoned five officials involved in the deal, including presidential spouse Jose Miguel Arroyo.

Ombudsman Merceditas Gutierrez said her office has summoned NBN star witness Rodolfo “Jun” Lozada to answer some questions about his knowledge of the deal. Contributed to Bulatlat

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