June 30, 2005 · Posted in: In the News

Adios, Arthur?

AGRICULTURE Secretary Arthur Yap today announced that he was leaving government so that he could clear his name in the P4-million tax evasion case filed against him by the Bureau of Internal Revenue. Yap said in a news conference today that the tax case would make him more a liability than an asset to President Gloria Arroyo, at a time when she was facing a crisis of her own.

"Last night, I had a heart-to-heart talk with the President and I explained that under the current circumstances, I will be ineffective as a secretary….This is a personal decision between the President and myself, ” Yap said.

Could there be more to Yap’s resignation than just the tax evasion charges?

Yap happens to be very close to Gloria and Mike Arroyo. He was her student in economics at the Ateneo, and is said to be one of Mike’s close friends. Yap is reportedly part of the First Gentleman’s circle of amigos that include:

  • former DA Undersecretary and now Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) director Jocelyn Bolante
  • Pagcor chair Ephraim Genuino
  • former NAIA General Manager and now Laguna Lake Development Authority Administrator (LLDA) Edgar Manda

That he announced his decision to leave the day after the First Gentleman’s own exit was made public could be mere coincidence. But his resignation will leave many questions hanging.

Anomalies and Irregularities

Before Yap’s appointment at the DA, he was first chief executive officer of Philippine International Trading Corporation (PITC), an agency described as the trading arm of the government, during the term of President Joseph Estrada. It assisted in imports and exports, and was then under the Department of Trade and Industry. There were reports of rampant rice smuggling at that time.

When Arroyo became President in 2001, she chose not only to retain Yap, but moved him to the National Food Authority, the agency under the DA that in charge of securing the country’s rice supply.

In February 2003, Rep. Carlos Padilla sought Yap’s resignation after the NFA procured some 600,000 tons of rice worth P9.5 billion from India that was allegedly “unfit for human consumption.” Yap had then denied the charges but admitted that a portion of the shipment was found to be of poor quality and that the NFA was to be reimbursed for that.

Conflict of Interest

Despite these reports, President Arroyo promoted Yap first to Undersecretary for Luzon and then eventually to Secretary of Agriculture in 2004. More questions were raised, among these the issue of conflict of interest. Yap is married to Carol Gaw, whose family owns the Uniwide chain. As Secretary of Agriculture, Yap held power over a vast network of food-related agencies that dealt with the country’s supermarket chains, among them the Uniwide stores.

Cases before the Ombudsman

Yap is also currently facing graft and corruption charges stemming from the P432-million deal to procure fertilizers through a negotiated bidding. The contract was signed by Yap as then NFA Adminsitrator in 2003, reportedly on the urging of former Secretary Luis Lorenzo. At the time, employees of the DA sought an investigation into the issue, reportedly because the government was placed at a disadvantage, when the NFA bought fertilizers at the cost of P500/bag when the going rate was only P400. The militant Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas has accused the Arroyo government of using the funds from that deal for the 2004 elections.

The case of graft and corruption against Yap and company before the Ombudsman was filed by the Marlene Garcia-Esperat, former action officer of the DA-Ombudsman, who was murdered in her home last March.

21 Responses to Adios, Arthur?


jay cynikho

June 30th, 2005 at 11:23 pm

Malaki na ang ipinagbago, not changes for the better, ng kagawaran ng pagsasaka. Butil na lang ng alaala ng kabutihan ni Sec Gozun, Sec Trinidad, Toto Nanding, at Dean Umali.

Humahagibis, bumubulusok ang pagbabagong sinimulan ni Bong Tanco, Dr, Excudero, Ding Panganiban at iba pa.

Dapat lahat ng Kagawaran ng Pamahalaan may HISTORIAN na independiente para di makita ng Secretary ang tunay na kasaysayan.

Kailan at kanino ba talaga nagsimula ang pangungurakot? Mahirap pumukol ng bato. Parang si Gloria, nakatalikod sa pader nakatawa. Samantalang si Ferdinand, si Cory, si Fidel at si Erap, lahat may hawak na bato hindi maipukol dahil sabi ni Kristo, sige batuhin ninyo kung may malinis sa inyo. No wonder walang dating presidente gustong bumato.

Meron bang puedeng bumato kay gloria? Kunti lang seguro, si Susan malamang payagan ni Kristo.



June 30th, 2005 at 11:32 pm

ayan ha… obvious na… go against the govet,

rock the boat,




June 30th, 2005 at 11:47 pm

This is the time for GMA to make a new round of political compromises.

Unprecedented transparency for the cabinet. That means unlimited access for anyone to public records. No more permit requirement for rallies.

Simplified BIR rules. Strict control of the Police. More independent and agressive foreign policy. Higher pay for the Police and the BIR in exchange for more oversight. Everybody knows that if you are paid well you work hard specially if someone demands good results in exchange.

I dont believe the dedication to public service bullshit at all. Nice to the ear and makes your heart go fat but does not work at all.

Higher budget for education and abolish PMA and PNPA will make the leftists happy. We can imitate the Isrealis who offer military science degrees in colleges alongside other degrees.

If she can pull that off then Lacson, Pimentel et al will have fit. If she cant then you can tear her to peices. You all mad frothing at the mouth Gloria haters can tear her to pieces like a dog. While you are at it you might as well include Lacson, the Marcoses, Estradas and all their friends. Then after that start killing each other. We dont mind cleaning up after you when you are done. We just put you in a big bloody gory pile will all the dismembered limbs intestines and broken skulls and sticky brains and burn it all up in gasoline or deisel. Or maybe coconut oil. Hah!

Then we can all sit down and form a government . Maybe we can elect a council or super senate or parliament who will hire a professional public administrator instead of a President. I would prefer to elect a representative to the council directly in a small simple easy to watch local election that can be held in one day. From casting of votes to counting to proclamation. It will be easier to watch the representative than watch a President. At least there would be a chance for me to know the representative personally. Then if something goes wrong we choose a replacement just as easily.

Then we can move on with our lives.

Damn im so OT i think I have to start my own Blog!



July 1st, 2005 at 12:05 am

hire a professional u say?

GMA is supposedly a professional…

she was elected… supposedly, and therefore hired.

she fucked up.

what do you do when ur employee fucks up…. more than once…



July 1st, 2005 at 12:21 am

There is a big difference. She is directly responsible to us. And we can all be swayed by propaganda like Erap’s antics.

When can we all agree our President fucked up without fighting each other first and start choosing a replacement? Im talking of guaranteed good performance here . Not the once in a lifetime mysterious recordings. When did we agree that Erap Fucked up? After he has stolen millions! Same for Gloria. I want this things to stop. I want guaranteed good performance. Choosing a president based on personality is a gamble. You get lucky this time you dont the next time. Economic cycles take multiple presidential terms. We are disrupting ours in an unpredictable way. Thats not good for business.

A parliament is much better than this.



July 1st, 2005 at 12:30 am

Where are the people with a consistent platform for political stability? Our country moves in fits and starts.

Im talking of a group of people with enough numbers to cover all positions that matter. national government local government public corporations. im talking of individuals with similar ideas how to run a society. similar policies. a group with an endless supply of candidate material so that each succeeding official build on what the predecesor has done. Where are they?

Nowhere! What we see a whole generation of self serving vengeful crab mentality pre martial law nostalgic artifacts!



July 1st, 2005 at 12:34 am

Another way to put it is that its cheaper to prevent a President from stealing rather running after a President who had already stolen something.



July 1st, 2005 at 12:35 am

And be replaced by another thief who is so good at pretending that he is not.

We want guarantees people! Not good faith!



July 1st, 2005 at 12:59 am

Are you sure you treat your President like your employee? I doubt it. Who did you vote for?

Most probably you look up to your candidate like an enlightened elder. You expect him to do no wrong. You are sure that he will take care of all our problems. Or solve at least half of it. Of course you are mad at the supporters of the “others”. They are so stupid. The “others” are all evil men…

You treat them and look up to them like they are humans with integrities thats stronger than ours. Incorruptible. Righteous. Close to God maybe? or Jesus-like?



July 1st, 2005 at 1:05 am

Sorry Roger,

But don’t give me that crap that there is no one better than GMA. Wala nalang ba talaga? Si Juan Flavier Nalang.



July 1st, 2005 at 1:43 am

Well of course!

The point is they should not be left alone. They need to feel pressure. They need to be forced make compromises and create policy that pleases everybody.

Is he going to be more open than everybody else? Whats are his policies? Who are his friends. Can he stomp down his feet and make the cabinet work? Can he control the power centers in Malacanan? More important is, does he have a team of people with similar ideas? From where he can pick his people and take over?

OF course we pick the best but we have to watch them. They are people and need constant followup.


dark night

July 1st, 2005 at 1:51 am

The GloriaGate Unification Theory (#2):

God must be punishing and blessing us at the same time.

Punishing us for doing an Edsa II without analyzing and implementing thoroughly the Constitution (but hell, who among the masses could do that?? the Constitution is not a subject you could study everyday in school) by giving us leaders that do not even have credibilities as thin as paper;

and blessing us by giving us these confusing times, coupled with VAT threatening us to just go out there and die (and, yeah, you could also add the above).

God wants us to learn.

-We- are the only problem. We don’t want to learn. We don’t study and learn from the past, from the present, and from the future.

Thus, we are helpless. And when we are helpless, we cannot do anything. All we could do is pass around the information, and hopefully whatever emotion could rise from there would build until the next explosive chapter in Philippine telenovela… er… history would finally reveal itself.

Blessed then are the masses who could buy the 3-hour GloriaGate cds at Quiapo. May they know “the truth” (and may they be patient in listening to it for 3 hours… Hey, is one installment of the Lord of the Rings 3 hours?)

(And damnit I so want to kick Mike Defensor’s a** at Debate, using the Old Testament’s King David’s example of him going around his city naked to atone for his sins… dammit Gloria’s not naked now! Defensor, You cannot use King David for comparison! She preferred to read from behind a teleprompter dammit! And don’t pretend you don’t understand that what I’m saying is figurative!)

((oo nga, gangster_roger, siguro kelangan na natin ng blog. di rin kc ako nagblo-blog, malamang kasi i-hack lng tulad rito… at saka ngayon lang ang mga panahon na medyo gaganahan kang mag-blog… meron bang public blog?))



July 1st, 2005 at 4:03 am

Gloria should always remember the saying ‘what goes around, comes around.” kung noon she double-crossed Erap, well, Noli could do the same to her.



July 1st, 2005 at 5:58 am

sa gitna ng mga gulong ito tila nababahag ang buntot ng mga kawal pilipino. palagi ninyong pinagmamalaki na kayo ang tagapagtanggol ng mga mamamayan. bakit tila kayong lahat ngayon ay mga bulag pipi at bingi. sino ngayon ang nais ninyong ipagtanggol? si gloria, ang huwad na commander in chief? ang inyong mga heneral na nagpapasasa sa limpak limpak nilang nakulimbat habang kayo ay nasa kabundukan nakikipaglaban na butas ang mga bota at kulang sa bala? o ang bulok na sistema na pamahalaan sa pilipinas na patuloy na bumubusabos sa inyo at sa mga nakararaming mahihirap na pilipino…noong 2001, tinalikuran daw ni angelo reyes ang rehimeng estrada dahila sa walang katulad na korapsyon, pero tanging sila lamang ang nakinabang sa desisyong iyon. tingnan ninyo ngayon kung nasaan na sila reyes, wycoco, ebdane at iba pa ninyong pinuno. nagpapagulong gulong sa sarap pero kayo ngayon ay nandiyan pa rin nagtitiis….hindi ninyo katungkulan ang magtanggol sa isang HUWAD na pamahalaan. ang inyong katapatan ay sa bansa at di isang tao lamang. hindi pa huli ang lahat. nagtitiwala kami sa inyong kabayanihan.



July 1st, 2005 at 8:21 am

well ‘marubdob’ you need to wait a little bit longer before these personalities react and do the tango again. normally these personalities move when its crystal clear their actions could maintain their interest (limbs and face). trust me, they won’t jump so soon and minimize the impact they would create (‘di kikita sa takilya), lest a political suicide. fortunately some would not do it when they cannot see a viable alternative, better than the one they currently see, corrupt or otherwise.

after all the talk and the blogs created i prefer to wait further, may it be the next (regular) election. but i believe it’s worthwhile to be more vigilant to this current govt for them to do no harm no more.



July 1st, 2005 at 8:53 am

kumpleto ba yung list?… o “among others” yun?…

‘taka lang ako bakit wala si Alfonso Cusi?



July 1st, 2005 at 10:27 am

GMA should follow Yap’s resignation, for the same reason invoked by the latter — to clear her name.

And just because one or two Pinoys demand accountability and truth from the bogus president more particularly as to her presidential MANDATE, here comes Malacanang spin-doctors branding them as GMA haters and deliberately littered the NET with red herrings.

Seems that smoke screening is the order of the day.

WHERE is then the so-called REAL rule of the law if the one who advocates it does not have any legal mandate to speak of in the first place?

And I thought my professor then was serious when SHE said with conviction “DURA LEX SED LEX” to the class on the context of her assertion of the primacy of the law over a faux pas.

Until now, I’m still wondering if we were taken for a ride then.



July 2nd, 2005 at 12:52 am

Pleeeeeez! Stop mentioning God! you are irritating your Leftist allies!



July 2nd, 2005 at 7:24 am

Maybe the other Cabinet Secretaries just don’t have a valid ALIBI to jump ship for the moment unlike sec. Yap who tendered his resignation because of the tax evasion charges filed against him. But according to Bunye all cabinet secretaries are solid in support of the president. Yon ang alam nya within the corridors of malacanang. Ang ‘di alam ni Bunye majority of the Filipinos don’t support his president. Mr. Bunye maglakad-lakad naman kayo paminsan-minsan at makiramdam sa ating mga lansangan ng magising na kayo sa katotohanan.



July 6th, 2005 at 11:45 am

If the resignation was for show, this was a big mis-calculation again by GMA because any move from any of her so-called “official family” to move out will be perceived as jumping from a sinking ship. If the resignation was “forced,” this means the Arroyo cabinet is in disarray because, surely Arthur Yap has some allies in the cabinet, not to mention that he is very close to GMA. And the “traitorous” manner by which the tax evasion case against him was sprung, meant another group has moved without GMA’s knowledge. Sec. Purisima and Comm. Parayno are said to be close to some private sector interest as well as US-IMF lobbyists. There are rumors that the recent cozying-up of the Arroyo government with the Chinese does not sit well with the US and its interests her in the Philippines and agriculture is right in the forefront of this issue, i.e. di ba ang hybrid rice at corn, na tinutulak ni Yap ay galing sa bansang Tsina, diba maraming pinirmahan na mga kasunduan sa fisheries na kasama ang Tsina, diba marami nang pumapasok na agricultural products mula sa Tsina, diba balak din ni Yap na maki pag kasunduan sa Tsina tungkol sa fertilizers?
But whatever the speculated reasons are, one thing is clear. The GMA regime is close to going down flat on its face (in whatever form – constitutional, or extra-constitutional). And the other clear thing is that tayong mga karaniwang mamayan na naman ang mahihirapan.



July 6th, 2005 at 1:09 pm

Ang pabago-bago ng pamunuan ng mga kagawaran katulad ng Dept of Agriculture ay walang mabuting magagawa sa mga mamayan lalung-lalo na sa mga magsasaka at mga mangingisda. Ang pagiging presidential appointee ng mga kalihim and the principle of “serving at the pleasurte of the president” ay isang counter-productive at self-defeating na sistema. This results to perrenial discontinuity of development and a waste in scarce financial resources of government, not to mention the resulting politization of the management of development programs and projects. Sa tingin ko, ang isang mabisang paraan ay itigil na ang sistemang ito na “at the pleasure of the president” at sa halip ay gawin na lamang ang katulad sa mga constitutional offices na mayroong fixed na termino ang mga taga-pangasiwa. Dapat permanente and mga cabinet secretaries for 6 years (kasabay ng nanalong pangulo). Dapat din itigil na ang sistemang idadaan pa sa Commission on Appointments ang mga kalihim. Ito din kasi ang pinagmumulan ng isa pang iregularidad na kung saan ay parang solicitation and sistema. The Comm on Appointments is actually a big bargainig table na kung saan ay kini-kikilan nila ang mga isinasalang. And if they cannot “come accross” the confirmation will not be granted..These requests can take as many forms imaginable, e.g. service vehicle, free use of staff house, projects where they can get “percentage” cut, employment of relatives and friends, influence or pressure on some private company, etc.

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