The Need for Genuine Change

A new group has been formed not only to serve as watchdog in the 2010 elections but also to push for genuine change beyond 2010.


A new group has been formed not only to serve as watchdog in the 2010 elections but also to push for genuine change beyond 2010.

In an interview with Bulatlat, Fr. Joe Dizon of Solidarity Philippines said that while the formation of People’s Movement for Change was pushed by the 2010 elections, the group also looks beyond 2010.

Dizon said, “Hindi solusyon ang pagpapalit na lang ng tao sa gobyerno. Hindi ito nakita noong panahon ni Cory. Sa Edsa II, constitutional succession kaya naupo si Gloria. After that, what happened is the betrayal of people power.” (Changing the leaders in government is not the solution. There was no change during the time of Cory [Aquino]. During Edsa II, Gloria was catapulted to power due to constitutional succession.)

Edsa I refers to the people’s uprising that toppled the Marcos dictatorship in 1986 and installed Corazon “Cory” Aquino. Edsa II was another people’s uprising in 2001 that ousted President Joseph Estrada.

Dizon reaffirmed the value of people power. “Isa itong political exercise na hindi dapat isantabi.” (This is a political exercise that should not be disregarded.)

Dizon said that the meaning of people power has been misused by the previous administrations. “Kay Gloria ang pinakamasama. Justified People Power I and II dahil nakinabang siya. Ang susunod pa, ayaw na niya.” (Gloria is worst. To her, People Power I and II are justified because she benefited from them. Of course, she does not want another people power uprising.)

President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo was repeatedly quoted as saying, “The world will not forgive another Edsa.”

Ang frustration ng tao, iyong mga nakinabang. (The people are frustrated at those who benefited from these uprisings.) They did not live up to the aspirations of the people.

She [Arroyo, for one] represents all the things that we hate – corrupt, liar, cheater,” said Dizon. He said that EDSA I and II were dominated by the trapos (traditional politicians).

Dizon said there is a need for active people’s intervention after the change of leaders in government. He added that with or without Arroyo, the movement will continue pushing for a more comprehensive reform agenda.

The initial gathering took place before the Holy Week, Dizon related. About 125 personalities, individuals and members of several anti-Arroyo groups met and talked about the reform agenda. Present were activists during martial law who are now in the academe, media, Church and other sectors.

An activist priest since martial law, Dizon said the movement aims to consolidate the progressive and militant section in the anti-Arroyo movement.

Election watchdog

The group, Dizon said, will also serve as a watchdog during the 2010 elections.

Dizon was also the initiator of the 2004 poll watchdog, Patriots and spokesperson of the 2007 poll watchdog Kontra Daya.

Even with automation of the elections, Dizon said people should still be vigilant. “Machines can be used for massive cheating.”

Hindi natin dapat hayaan ang eleksyon [na magsilbi] sa vested interests. Makialam sa content, conduct and results of the 2010 elections,” (We should not let elections serve vested interests. Let us intervene in the content, conduct and results of the 2010 elections.) Dizon added.

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