Erap’s ‘Readiness’

Banco de Oro, which bought Equitable PCI Bank this year, has already forwarded to the Sandiganbayan P215 million from the Erap Muslim Youth Foundation. The court earlier ordered the forfeiture of the foundation’s funds, which were sourced from ousted President Joseph Estrada’s jueteng collections.

Interviewed on television about the forfeiture of his assets, Estrada said he’s ready get jailed in Munti if proven guilty of violating anything in connection with this forfeiture issue.

Funny how he seems to have chosen to forget how he eventually gave in to the executive pardon offer that was so excitedly given to him by the Palace people. To think he had spent most of the past six years in his rest house and in a hospital. And now he’s saying that he’s ready to go to a real prison. Bagay nga sila ni Arroyo!

Batasan Bombing

Weird thought on the explosion at the House of Representatives tonight: is this meant to divert the people’s attention from the administration congressmen’s bastardization of the impeachment process?

Could it be that the powerful will use this as an excuse to repress the people some more? quoted Akbayan Rep. Risa Hontiveros as saying: “We cannot help but fear that this would lead to the declaration of Martial Law or a state of emergency to give way to repressive acts. We caution the government against using the bombing to institute repressive measures.”

Or is blaming You-Know-Who getting for every tragedy in the country just becoming a bad habit?

It could also be a protest, ala-Light A Fire Movement, against the kakapalan of the bribees in Batasan.

De Venecia reportedly described the bombing as “a terror attack on the House.”

Continue reading “Batasan Bombing”

Alioden Dalaig, 63

When I heard the news about the killing of Atty. Alioden D. Dalaig of the Commission on Elections last Saturday, my first reaction was revulsion at how killers in the Philippines continue to be so brazen.

More than 800 activists and journalists have been killed since the start of the Arroyo administration in 2001. The killers have also targeted lawyers and judges–and now, even civil servants like Dalaig. As long as the culture of impunity remains, this series of violence will most likely not be broken.

Continue reading “Alioden Dalaig, 63”

Bring Them to Arroyo

An Inquirer report today said the Bureau of Corrections is forwarding to the Board of Pardons and Parole cases of around 200 prisoners aged 70 years and above for review.

What review is the BuCor talking about? I say bring the elder prisoners’ documents to the Palace and have President Arroyo sign their release papers.

If she could grant executive clemency to a former president and convicted plunder only a few weeks after promulgation of judgment, why can’t she do the same to ordinary inmates? Estrada never stepped foot in Bilibid even for a minute while these oldies have been in prison for many years. Their papers say they are over 70. That’s the same supposed reason Gloria freed Erap. If she believes in justice for all, she should also free these old inmates without delay!

Time Magazine on Arroyo–and probably its print version, too–has again featured alleged Philippine President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. A November 1 article entitled “Crisis — Again — for the Philippines’ Arroyo” by Peter Ritter discusses the various issues Arroyo faces these days.

The Glorietta bombing, the bribery in Malacañang, the bishops’ call for her resignation, the ZTE broadband deal, and the Estrada pardon were among the recent issues touched by the article. It also mentioned the Hello Garci controversy to substantiate its statement that almost since Arroyo became president, “her administration has been buffeted by allegations of corruption every bit as audacious as Estrada’s.”

The article also quoted fellow blogger and Inquirer columnist Manolo Quezon as saying Arroyo may be able to finish her term due to people’s apathy.

Read the article here: “Crisis — Again — for the Philippines’ Arroyo”

Trillanes, Paglingkurin! Movement Launched

Ellen Tordesillas’ blog reposted a report on the launch of “Trillanes, Paglingkurin!” movement, which included former Vice President Guingona and former UP President Francisco Nemenzo.

The group will do a nationwide campaign to exert pressure on the Arroyo government “to allow detained senator Antonio Trillanes IV to perform his duties as a lawmaker.” Trillanes, Paglingkurin! movement’s unity statement is reposted on, and the group could be contacted at Continue reading “Trillanes, Paglingkurin! Movement Launched”

Stupid and Ironic

A university in Manila has imposed an “English-only policy” supposedly to improve its students’ proficiency in English. Speaking in languages other than English is allowed only at certain areas within the campus. The constituents of the university–the name of which is in Filipino–may also speak in any languange around midday.

The Inquirer quoted the university’s president as saying they want “to create an environment” in which those who will speak in Filipino at the English zones will be ignored.

This policy, besides being ironic–the university that imposes it is called Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila–is stupid. While contributing to the continued marginalization of the Filipino language, it suppresses the natural flow of communication between students, teachers and staff of the university and makes these people sound awful. Continue reading “Stupid and Ironic”