[Blueboard] INIIBIG KO ANG PILIPINAS (Ang Pilipinas na "hindi iisang pamilya lamang")

Simbahang Lingkod ng Bayan slb at admu.edu.ph
Fri Feb 15 12:16:30 PHT 2008

Ang Pilipinas na "hindi iisang pamilya lamang" (Lozada, NBN-ZTE Star Witness)                                                              

More resoundingly than ever, we, the Simbahang Lingkod ng Bayan, reiterate what we have time and again demanded of the current government of the Republic of the Philippines: TRUTH, ACCOUNTABILITY and REFORM.

Without question, it is the constitutional duty and moral culpability of the administration of Gloria Macapagal Arroyo to ensure that the facts of all cases of corruption and anomalous dealings be brought to light, that those found and proven to be involved in such be prosecuted and punished, and that every effort shall be made to reform a system so ridden by this cancer.   

Upon careful reflection on numerous unresolved issues and recent developments surrounding the Senate investigation of the NBN-ZTE deal and the alleged abduction of Engr. Jun Lozada, key witness to the said investigation, our call is for the following concrete forms of action to address the weakening of our democratic institutions and processes and to punish those who will be found guilty to the full extent of the law: 


Ô     That Gloria Macapagal Arroyo lift E.O. 464 which bans any of the cabinet members to appear before the Senate hearings without her consent. EO 464 is the major impediment to the public's right to information and access to the truth. It is questionable why that order was necessary in the first place, and whose interests were being protected by it. If Arroyo is prepared to serve the common good by allowing the truth to come forth, she should be ready to revoke EO 464.

Ô     That Secretary Romulo Neri and other witnesses disclose to the general public all the relevant and truthful information about the NBN-ZTE deal.  

Ô     That the Senators faithfully continue with the hearings amidst ad hominem tactics against Lozada and cha-cha campaign to divert public attention and distract the country from pressing concerns.


 Ô     That the Senators concretely resolve to have an Independent Counsel pursue the case at hand.  He or she shall have the duty to investigate and, if necessary, to prosecute certain high ranking officials of the Executive and Congress, including their relatives by affinity or consanguinity within the fourth civil degree charged with malfeasance or misfeasance in office.  This should be exercised particularly for the ZTE scandal.  The Independent Counsel should come from outside the government and be appointed by the President, subject to CA approval and judicial review of the Supreme Court en banc based on the qualifications provided by the statute creating the office.


 Ô     That we heed the call of CBCP for reform – individually and communally - especially during the current season of Lent.  We also strongly support the CBCP President's  call for communal action and enjoin the public to attend fora, discernment sessions and public expressions of support for valid calls articulated herein.

Ô     That Lawmakers revise the Government Procurement Reform Act (R.A. 9184) to ensure greater transparency and plug the enormous losses of taxpayer's money to corrupt officials estimated to amount to P30 billion for this year alone – a scandalous injustice and mockery of the plight of the millions of Filipinos who live in poverty and who would have benefited from services rightfully due them through these public funds.

 We believe that if Mrs. Arroyo fails to act on the above, she irredeemably imperils her already worn-out credibility and moral authority, and will consequently lose the little remaining hold to a legitimate Presidency. 

 We therefore call on all men and women of goodwill to join us in making these demands, while remaining prayerfully vigilant and critically engaged in discerning and taking on courses of action to redeem the highly degraded integrity of our nation.  

 See, I am doing something new!  Now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?  In the desert, I make a way; in the wasteland, rivers.  Isaiah 43: 18-19

Manalangin.  Manindigan.  Makialam.


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