Transition Council – Answer to Crisis of
A well-known Catholic
bishop, party-list leader and others agree that a transition council
should replace President Macapagal-Arroyo, whose ouster is being sought by
more and more Filipinos.
By Art Allad-iw
Posted by Bulatlat
BAGUIO CITY - A
Catholic bishop believes that there is a breakdown in the government as
manifested by the present crisis in the presidency and government’s
anti-people policies. A party-list leader says on the other hand that a
council should be established, which would serve later as a transition
government before the election of a new set of leaders should Gloria
Macapagal-Arroyo (GMA) be ousted.
In a forum this week
at the University of the
Philippines in Baguio, Catholic
Bishop Julio Labayen encouraged participants to espouse politics that
advances the rights and welfare of the majority for a better society. The
forum was well-attended by militant groups, church people, and the
Labayen, a figure in
the anti-Marcos dictatorship struggle, said that Macapagal-Arroyo’s
governance and method of leadership is not pro-people, as shown by the
expanded value added tax and incessant oil price hikes.
Labayen is a member
of the Makabansang Kilusang Ekonomya (MKE or patriotic economic movement)
which was part of the June 24 national day of mourning. The group also
called for the President to speak as to truth of the latest CD which
exposes her alleged conversation with Election Commissioner Virgilio
Garcillano to rig the Mindanao
elections in her favor.
militant groups and the Political Science Division of the university, who
were invited as reactors, agreed with Labayen’s pronouncements and also
voiced their support for the ouster of the President.
Chie Galvez of the
Tongtongan ti Umili (TTU or people’s dialogue) and the local chapter of
the Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (Bayan or New Patriotic Alliance) said an
ouster is inevitable with all the controversies and problems haunting the
present administration. She said the only question is when this will take
Deeper into poverty
Geraldine Cacho of
ORNUS (Organisasyon dagiti Nakurapay nga Umili ti Siyudad or urban poor
association) also supported the call for the ouster of Arroyo, saying that
Macapagal-Arroyo’s anti-people policies that drove the urban poor deeper
“Kahit ilang ulit
tayong magpalit ng pangulo, huwag tayong magsasawa, hanggang sa maitayo
natin ang gobyernong para sa atin” (Even if we replace more
presidents, we should be patient until we build our own government), she
Cacho reiterated that
the VAT which will be implemented in July will hit the poor most. She
added that the Community Mortgage Program (CMP), which is supposed to
provide affordable housing for the urban poor community, is very costly.
Cacho also lamented
that government troops are bombarding the interior tri-boundary of Mt.
Province, Ilocos Sur and Benguet
as part of Macapagal-Arroyo’s counter insurgency campaign, where hundreds
of women and children are caught in the crossfire.
“Ginegyera kami ng
gobyerno, ginegyera kami ni Gloria” (Government has declared war
against us, Gloria has declared war against us), Cacho declared.
Cacho also criticized
the Arroyo government for branding organizations critical of her
administration, including ORNUS, as “communist fronts.”
Political Science Prof. Maileenita Penalba said that the crisis of the
president is a crisis of political legitimacy. “Mahirap mamalakad kung
walang political legitimacy,” she explained.
Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo be ousted, who would take he place?
In the same forum,
Manny Loste, national vice-chairperson of party-list Bayan Muna said that
the kind of crisis the country has can not be handled by one person only.
Loste said the
proposal of Bayan Muna and its allied organizations is a transition
council that would be composed of people, who care for the rights and
welfare of fellow Filipinos.
Loste explained that
the said council will pave the way for an election of a new set of
officials. “This would be different from EDSA 2, where the vice president
automatically replaced the ousted president,” he said.
He stressed that Vice
President Noli de Castro cannot replace Arroyo because even his election
into office is tainted with fraud.
Loste also said that
the political crisis could be resolved if the economic and moral crisis is
Bishop Labayen agreed
with Bayan Muna’s proposal for a transition council, stressing that the
transition council should involve all Filipinos. With a report from Kim
Quitasol / Nordis / Posted by Bulatlat
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