July 23, 2005 · Posted in: Governance, In the News

Weekend readings

FOR those who‘d like to bone up on the implications of the juetenggate and Gloriagate before President Arroyo’s state-of-the-nation address (SONA) on Monday, the Institute for Popular Democracy, a political research and advocacy organization, has compiled the analyses it has written on the current political crisis.

The compilation, entitled “Gloriawatch” and downloadable in PDF format, includes Joel Rocamora’s piece “Weteng for Reform,” in which he predicts that the crisis should be the “last nail on the coffin of the country’s bankrupt political system.”

Rocamora stresses that the “Hello, Garci” controversy brings to the fore the problem not only with the electoral system. “What is in crisis is the whole system of representation, the heart of any democratic system,” he says.

A local research consulting group, Stratbase, meanwhile, has put out a 20-page analysis on the crisis in time for Monday’s SONA.

The paper, “Deconstructing the Crisis: The Real State of the Nation,” states: “The problem of the Philippines is not just Gloria, it is far worse. The biggest problems we face now are the weaknesses of our institutions.”

Stratbase laments that Filipinos are today stuck with captured political institutions, money politics, a fraudulent electoral system, a wanting political party system, weakened judiciary and law enforcement agencies and an “impasse-able” Congress.  

The research group proposes a way out: a broad alliance or social coalition for reforms.

Download IPD’s "Gloriawatch" and Stratbase’s "Deconstructing the Crisis."

9 Responses to Weekend readings



July 23rd, 2005 at 1:25 pm

as written by ducky paredes in malaya, today:

Still, with Chief Justice Davide presiding, how can we hope for a competent and affair impeachment trial? Davide botched the Erap impeachment trial by not knowing how to act as a fair judge. In that kind of a situation, any other judge would have continued the trial even as the prosecution panel walked out. That is how competent judges run their court¹s proceedings.

Certainly, they do not give in to mob rule!

hmmm. with GMA it seems that the best option to unseat her will still be the streets.



July 23rd, 2005 at 2:08 pm

I agree. Our institutions like the military or the PNP rely so much on the padrino system. So much so that by the time a general or an administrator sits on that position he or she has to return the favors he/she owed the people who put her there in the first place. Dapat talaga yung mga institutions natin like the NBI, SSS, GSIS operate on the system of merits and that the personnel considered for the position should be career officers of said institutions. The president shouldn’t be the one giving these plum posts to her chummies or partners in crime. Coz it discourages career officers to work hard and excel and futhermore it demoralizes said institutions when a persona who is not from their ranks is installed to lead them and then at a whim he can be replaced by the president with another individual who they have to get along with again. The result is an institution beholden to the president, an institution that is weak, that has half baked programs that may or may not push through depending on the current ability and motivation of its current head. And who can be used by the president to further his or her agenda.
Would also like to point out and hope discourage all those governors mayors (ex mr atienza) and esp presidents to stop parading their pictures whether in print or media on high profile high priced projects na alam naman natin comes from our taxes. Its misleading and it brainwashes people into believing that those people are worthy patrons of the city or the country for that matter. Far from it they are just doin their job its what we hire them to do. Di nila pera yan so please wag na nilang ilagay yung mga pangalan nila. Better if they just say courtesy of the republic of the philippines. Para naman we as citizens esp. those mejo illiterate ones will vote on merit di yung un si anu an daming ginawa dito na ganun at ganyan. Now if they have the balls to use their own money then by all means. If not stop it!! Your contributing to the further degradation of our system.


Filipino Librarian

July 25th, 2005 at 8:11 am

FO: State of the Nation Address

Inside PCIJ’s “Weekend readings” provides links to pdf documents for those who wish to analyze the implications of recent scandals before the SONA today.



July 25th, 2005 at 12:43 pm

Alternative scenario
First posted 01:43am (Mla time) July 25, 2005
By Avelino Sebastian Jr.
Inquirer News Service

IF President Macapagal-Arroyo’s disqualification is eventually declared by the
Presidential Electoral Tribunal (PET), should the Vice President succeed?

In Section 8, Article VII of the Constitution, the vice president is entitled
to succession in four instances: when the president dies, suffers permanent
disability, resigns, or is removed from office. Ms Arroyo has made it clear
that she will not resign. But, she can be removed. Ms Arroyo’s removal from
office can be achieved legally in one of two ways: by impeachment, or by the
declaration of her disqualification in an election protest. Section 2, Article
IX of the Constitution expressly declares that the president may only be
removed from office by impeachment. Accordingly, the constitutional succession
of the vice president following the removal of the president presupposes that
the removal of the president is by virtue of impeachment. Constitutional
succession will not take place if Ms Arroyo’s disqualification under Section 68
of the Omnibus Election Code is declared by the PET.

The standing to file and maintain an election protest is limited to the
candidates who obtained the second and third highest number of votes.
Unfortunately, FPJ passed away on Dec. 14, 2004 and the PET has ruled with
finality that his widow cannot take his place as petitioner.

This leaves Sen. Panfilo Lacson as the sole surviving potential protestant.
Lacson has a very limited period of time within which to file an electoral
protest. Under the PET rules, the petition should have been filed within 30
days from Ms Arroyo’s proclamation. However, Lacson may reasonably argue that
the evidence of Ms Arroyo’s disqualification (that is, the “Hello Garci” tape)
became available only on June 27, 2005 when she delivered her famous “I’m
sorry” address to the nation, wherein she admitted to having spoken to a
Comelec official during the 2004 presidential elections. In a number of
previous occasions, the Supreme Court entertained election protests that were
filed way after the statutory deadline. The Court took cognizance of the
protests, saying that the higher interest of the State and public good should
take precedence over procedural infirmities. Accordingly, Lacson has 30 days
from June 27, 2005 (the date Ms Arroyo openly admitted her “lapse in judgment”)
within which to file the electoral protest.

Clearly, the success or failure of Lacson’s electoral protest would depend
heavily on the admissibility of the “Hello Garci” tape as evidence. Allies of
Ms Arroyo are quick to point out that the tape, being the fruit of a poisoned
tree, is inadmissible as evidence. Several arguments, however, can be raised to
refute this proposition.

First, Ms Arroyo has been nebulous in her famous “I’m sorry” address. She
neither confirmed nor denied that the female voice on the “Hello Garci” tape
was hers. Unless she makes a categorical admission, it is not likely that she
would be in a legal position to suppress the presentation of the tape as
evidence, because the constitutional protection of the privacy of conversation
is personal.

Second, by not making a timely admission or denial of the identity of the
female voice in the tape, Ms Arroyo may be held in estoppel. Despite the public
outrage and economic adversities that resulted from the revelation of the tape,
Ms Arroyo opted to remain silent. The circumstances clearly demanded that she
make a categorical admission or denial of her involvement in the taped
conversations. She did not. She had every opportunity to invoke her
constitutional right to privacy. She did not. The law does not extend
protection to those who sleep on their rights. The law presumes, on the
contrary, that one who deliberately fails to invoke a right when the
circumstances clearly demand such invocation, has no right to invoke it in the
first place.

Third, Ms Arroyo may be deemed to have waived her right to the privacy of
communication. The House of Representatives played the tape as part of the
evidence in the congressional investigation on the “Hello Garci” tapes. She did
not even try to suppress the move by invoking the right to privacy. On the
contrary, Press Secretary Ignacio Bunye even presented the tape to the media on
June 6, 2005. By all indications, Ms Arroyo’s actions clearly demonstrate a
waiver of the right to privacy of communication.

Fourth, the constitutional guarantee of privacy of communication is not
absolute. The right succumbs to the exigencies of the highest public interest.
Given that the tapes could shed light to the issue relating to electoral fraud,
Ms Arroyo’s right to privacy must yield to the higher national interest.

Fifth, there is serious doubt if the Anti-Wire Tapping Law is applicable to the
interception of mobile phone conversations. As presently worded, the law makes
specific reference to the tapping of wires and cables. A mobile phone is
wireless, and the transmission is made through radio waves. The United States
Congress, in fact, amended its own law on the matter, after arriving at the
conclusion that the original law did not extend protection to wireless



July 25th, 2005 at 2:19 pm

I agree. We need reform we should push for it and be vigilant.



July 25th, 2005 at 2:39 pm

The only way to make Gloria leave is to make sure that the economic interests of here supporters will be ruined. That means the businessmen. Stop the business. We are telling them kick her out or we all go down the drain!

Otherwise she will not leave.



July 25th, 2005 at 2:40 pm

And when Gloria leaves, nobody will be nice to her anymore. she will be run into the ground until nothing is left of her.



July 26th, 2005 at 5:22 am

What you are saying is there is not a damn thing right with our government. We have known that for sometime, back to the days of Marcos when he destroyed all our faith in the system and its leaders.

But more than our leaders who destroyed all semblance of our democracy, Filipinos as well have embraced corruption as a way of life so it now pervades every area of our lives. The system is beyond repair,
no matter who we elect, from the town council to the presidency. The Philippines has become A NATION OF CROOKS.

It’s little wonder everybody wants to leave the country. The best and the brightest among us have left and more will be leaving in the future.
The bad news is I don’t see any leader among us who can emerge to
get us out of this wilderness.



July 26th, 2005 at 1:17 pm

Nang naluklok sa posisyon si GMA noong EDSA 2, nangako siya ng pagbabago sa palakad ng gobiyerno. Ititigil na raw ang politics of patronage. Tandang-tanda ko iyon sapagkat naroroon ako at narinig ko mismo. Ngunit isang walang humpay na pagtataksil ang naganap, mula sa pangungunsinte sa mga alipores ni Mike Arroyo, hanggang sa pagpapamudmod ng pabor sa militar, pulisya, at COMELEC upang tulungan siyang manalo sa eleksiyon. Kung ating iisipin, wala yata siyang gaanong pinagkaiba kay Marcos, maliban na lamang na hindi pa niya pinakukulong (at napapawala na parang bula) ang kaniyang mga kaaway. Kung maging desperado siyang kumapit sa poder, ito na kaya ang susunod?

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