When a President says, “I’ll kill you.”
By: Hon. Gary C. Alejano
Magandang araw po sa inyong lahat. Nais ko lamang sagutin ang mga patutsada ng Pangulong Duterte patungkol sa aming nakaraan at ng aming ipinaglalaban bilang miyembro ng Magdalo. Ang layunin nito ay para malinawan ang hindi nakakaalam at matigil ang pagpalaganap ng kasinungalingan ng pangulo at panlilinlang sa taumbayan.
Ako ay nalulungkot dahil ang opisina ng panguluhan ay naging peryahan na sa halip na bigyan ng malinaw na direksyon ang bansa ang Pangulo ay naging entertainer na kayang magtapon ng iresponsable at kabastusan na komento sa harap ng ating kababayan sa ibang bansa and he gets away with it.
Ano ba talaga ang ipinaglalaban ng Magdalo? Mainam din namang muling bisitahin ang mga hinaing ng grupo. Sa aming karanasan bilang mga batang sundalo, nakita namin ang realidad sa kanayunan na kung saan laganap ang kahirapan, kakulangan ng serbisyo sa mahihirap, kurapsiyon at inhustisya. Kasama na dito ang mga katiwalian sa loob ng organisasyon ng Hukbong Sandatahan ng Pilipinas katulad ng pagbebenta ng baril at bala sa grupong rebelde at local politicians, kurapsiyon sa logistics at comptrollership, paba-on system, housing, benepisyo sa mga namamatay at nasusugatan na mga sundalo at iba pa.
Hindi po namin pakay ang makikipagdigma sa kapwa sundalo at pulis dahil ang kanilang kapakanan ang siya din namang aming ipinaglalaban. Sa dalawang pagkakataon sa Oakwood at Manila Penn incidents, ni isang putok ay di namin ginawa dahil ang mahalaga sa amin ay ang mensahe na aming sasabihin at hindi ang posibleng madugong labanan sa pagitan namin kahit pa man karamihan sa amin ay beterano na sa pakikidigma laban sa mga rebelde at kahit dala-dala namin ang malalakas at makabagong gamit sa AFP nang panahong iyon.
Ang isyu ng pagnakaw ng “kutsara, tinidor, towel at bedsheets”. Ang masabi ko lang, Pangulong Duterte huwag mong baguhin ang kasaysayan sa pamagitan ng pagsisinungaling. Maraming tao ang nakakaalam na ito’y hindi totoo. Mas mabuting itanong mo na lang sa media personalities na nandoon sa pangyayari. Harapin mo ang isyu ng diretso at iwasang ilihis ito sa walang kwentang panlalait ng tao lalong-lalo na kung ito ay walang katotohanan.
Ganun pa man, ang aming pagprotesta ay nagsanhi ng iba’t ibang imbestigasasyon upang alamin ang ugat ng aming hinaing. Mula dito nagkaroon ng mga rekomendasyon para sa ikakabuti ng AFP. Nagkaroon ng reporma sa comptroller ng AFP, ang budget para sa frontline units ay diretso nang binibigay sa kanila, naging maayos ang suplay ng uniporme at baril sa mga sundalo, nalantad at naayos ang isyu ng pabaon sa mga nagreretirong heneral, at iba pa.
Ngayon po laging sinasabi ng presidente at ng kanyang supporters na wala naman kaming nagawa sa bansa. Ang kapasidad ng isang tao na gumawa ng isang bagay para sa bansa ay naayon sa kanyang tungkulin o trabaho. In our case, we were soldiers before and now as legislators as we represent the Magdalo group.
Bilang mga sundalo noon, kami po ay nagtaya na ng aming buhay laban sa kalaban ng estado. Nagtiis na maiwanan ang mahal sa buhay upang magampanan ang sinumpaang tungkulin. Ilan sa amin ay may bahid ng tama ng bala sa katawan. Ang ilan ay namatay na. Kami po ay nakulong at nagdusa ng mahabang panahon dahil sa aming ipinaglaban.
Dahil sa pagnanais na maging bahagi ng solusyon sa mga problemang aming nakikita kami ay nakilahok sa eleksyon upang makapag impluwensiya sa mga importanteng polisiya ng bansa. Kami ay nabigyan ng mandato ng taong bayan sa katauhan ni Antonio Trillanes bilang senador at ang iyong lingkod bilang representante ng Magdalo Partylist. Sa aming panunungkulan, ang mga sumusunod ay ilan lang sa mga importanteng nagawa ng grupo para sa AFP at PNP:
A. Authored New AFP Modernization Law
B. Salary Standardization Law 3
C. Proposed Salary Standardization Law 4 that paved the way for the signing of Executive Order No. 201 – MODIFYING THE SALARY SCHEDULE FOR CIVILIAN GOVERNMENT PERSONNEL AND AUTHORIZING THE GRANT OF ADDITIONAL BENEFITS FOR BOTH CIVILIAN AND MILITARY AND UNIFORMED PERSONNEL
D. Increase of Subsistence Allowance for Uniformed Personnel from P90 to P150
E. Passing of an Act declaring the last full week of August as Armed Forces of the Filipino Week.
F. Passing of an Act increasing the burial assistance for veterans from ten thousand pesos (P10,000.00) to twenty thousand pesos (P20,000.00).
G. Construction of AFP Offices, Quarters and Barracks for Active Officers and Personnel
Bills and Resolutions
Previous Congress Bills and Resolutions Filed Bills Passed Into Law Remarks
Office of Senator TRILLANES (14th to 16th Congress) 1109 65 Laws Most Productive Senator
MAGDALO Partylist (16th Congress) 515 13 Laws Among the Most Productive Partylist
Other Benefits facilitated to Constituents
Programs Number of Beneficiaries
Scholarship/Student Financial Assistance 36,500
Food/ relief distribution/medical dental mission 200,000
Medical Assistance 135,000
Infrastructures facilitated – more than 1,000 projects.
Sa puntong ito, ako rin po ay magtatanong kay Presidente Duterte. Noong kayo po ay congressman ng Davao, ilan bang batas at panukalang batas ang iyong nagawa? Kayo na mismo ang nagsabi minsan na panay lamang panonood mo ng sine.
Pangalawa, alam po naming may ginawa ka sa Davao bilang mayor pero ako po ay magtatanong lamang. Noong nalalagay ba ang aming buhay sa balag ng alanganin dahil sa pakikipaglaban sa bandidong Abu Sayaff, at rebeldeng NPA at MILF nasaan ka?
– Hindi ba na ikaw ang kumukokop, sumusuporta at nagbibigay ng sanctuary sa mga rebeldeng NPA sa Davao?
– Hindi ba na ikaw ang nagsabi sa mga negosyante sa Davao na bahagi lamang ng negosyo ang pagbayad ng revolutionary taxes sa mga NPA?
– Hindi ba na inamin mo mismo noong December 2012 na ikaw ay nagbabayad ng revolutionary taxes sa NPA na umabot sa P125 million kada taon? Ilang milyon na ba ang nabigay mo sa kanila mula sa intelligence fund ng City sa buong panunungkulan mo sa Davao City?
– Hindi ba na binigyan mo nang hero’s burial at funeral si Kumader Paragon a iyong matalik na kaibigan?
– Sa lahat ba ng suporta mo sa NPA pinansiyal at pagkanlong sa kanila, ilang sundalo na ba ang namatay, nasugatan, o nakidnap dahil dito?
– Hindi ba po tayo nagtataka na kahit ilang sundalo na ang patraidor na pinatay sa panahon ng ceasefire at parang galit na galit ang pangulo na sinabi na papatagin ang kabundukan para habulin ang mga NPA at kinabukasan ay biglang pihit at sinabi niya na tuloy ang peacetalks?
– Hindi ba kataksilan sa bayan ang ginawa mo nang nanumpa kang ipagtanggol ang Constitution at ang Republika ng Pilipinas habang nagbibigay ka ng ayuda sa mga rebelde gamit mismo ang pondo ng kaban ng bayan?
– Hindi ba umiiral ngayon ang isang coalition government sa pagitan ninyo ng CPP-NPA-NDF dahil sa pag-appoint mo sa iyong gabinete mula sa kanilang hanay na kung saan bilyon bilyong pondo ng bansa ang nasa kanilang impluwensiya?
– Hindi mo ba nililinlang lamang ang kasundaluhan at ang taong bayan sa iyong pakay na gawing sosyalista ang bansang ito ayon sa ideology ng Communist Party of the Philippines?
-Ito ba ang dahilan kung bakit niyayakap mo ang kumonistang Tsina at galit na galit ka sa bansang Amerika?
– Ano ba ang iyong sekretong kasunduan sa bansang Tsina at mukhang napaka amo mo sa kanila kahit tahasang nilalabag ang integridad ng territoryo ng ating bansa?
Marami pa po akong katanungan sa Pangulo na mas mahalaga pa kaysa isyu ng pagnanakaw ng tuwalya, kutsara at tinidor sa isang hotel.
Patungkol naman sa hamon ng Pangulo na pangunahan namin ang pagdepensa sa Spratlys at Scarborough laban sa mga Chinese. Nais ko lang banggitin na kami ay sang ayon sa independent foreign policy at pakikipagkaibigan sa China ngunit dapat hindi kapalit nito ang ating territoryo at soberenya.
Pinapaalalahan ko ang pangulo na kung meron mang isang tao na unang tatayo at dedepensahan ang bansa iyon ay wala nang iba kundi siya at hindi magturo sa kanino man.
Ngunit sa halip na gawin ito mistulang binasura niya ang Hague Ruling na paborable sa atin kapalit ng ilang bilyon na investments at loans sa bansa. Tayo ay pumasok sa bitag ng Tsina na kung saan kinagat natin ang option na magaan at may pera pa pero at the expense naman ng ating claims sa WPS sa ngayon and in the future. Lingid sa kaalaman ng Pilipino na ang pautang na ito ay desenyo upang talian ang ating leeg sa mahabang panahon at mawalan tayo ng pagkakataong umangal sa kagustuhan nila.
Dahil dito bumuo ng narrative ang pangulo na sapagkat tayo ay mahina at walang kakayanan hindi tayo makikipag-giyera sa Tsina at tama lamang na hayaan natin sila. Ito ay paglilinlang sa atin sapagkat hindi lamang giyera ang kaparaanan paano i-assert ang ating karapatan sa WPS. Marami pang non-military options. Ang giyera ay dapat ay last option kung darating man tayo diyan.
We should increase our civilian activities because the volume of activities is a clear manifestation of our intention to assert our rights in WPS. We can empower our fishermen while building shelter and providing them support in our islands. Make our islands habitable, sustainable and comfortable. We can make these islands as tourism areas and open them to tourists. We can task our concerned agencies to conduct comprehensive marine survey and research in the area. We can beef up our coast guard fleet to conduct patrol in the area. Set up appropriate development and regulatory commission for Benham Rise. In fact, I have filed one. Ilan lang ito sa mga dapat gawin.
Ganun pa man, kung hahantong tayo sa labanan ng pwersa ng Tsina, kami po ay boluntaryong sasama dahil isang karangalan ang magsilbi sa bayan.
By: Borgy Borgonia
My biggest peeve about Aquino: he just couldn’t let things settle with both the Marcoses and the Arroyos. Yes, they done fucked up. But you don’t have to fucking remind us every time you have the chance!
I didn’t have a problem with the bus incident and why he didn’t apologize because if he did that, he would compromise the country. Sure, it villified him, but it was necessary.
I didn’t have a problem with Yolanda. I worked for the government for 5 years. I know it takes years for places to recover from calamities of that level. And it was justified. COA outed Romualdez. The problem was too many people expected miracles and instant solutions and let emotions get in the way of understanding how processes and systems work. Just ask the victims of Hurricane Katrina who are still rebuilding after all this time. U.S. pa yun. Harsh reality: Walang instant maliban sa pancit canton.
I didn’t have a problem with SAF44. They were on a mission out on the field. There were errors and miscommunications in the chain of command. There was greed and pride involved which colored decision making. But blaming Aquino? If you don’t know how these operations work, particularly this one which was mired with problems, don’t fucking throw blame if you don’t know the right target.
I didn’t have a problem with “Laglag Bala”, because I knew it was an underhanded tactic that only showed up conveniently during campaign season. And disappeared just as quickly. If this was going on before that, you’d fucking better believe it would have spread fast. People on the inside of NAIA are not known for keeping their mouths shut. Tattletales are everywhere there.
I did have a problem with Luisita. More for his silence than anything.
I did have a problem with how he’s often slow to address internal administrative concerns, though he did act on them. He could have acted faster and not waste taxpayer’s money by axing the problem personnel sooner.
I did have a problem with how he was non-commital to issues about health care professionals’ compensation.
I did have a problem when he didn’t react to defend himself. Come on, man! Not addressing your critics is ok most of the time, but speak up when it’s critical. Being meek doesn’t mean to be passive all of the time.
And he was boring for the most part.
But I can’t deny the results. The economy was fine; better than fine. The world knew it. Banks knew it. Investors knew it. Under his watch, the sunshine industry of BPOs grew from being a trend to being a reliable industry employing 2 million+. We weren’t just relying on our OFW remittances anymore. Heck, minimum fare was P7! The last time that happened, Ramos was still the president. Only the people who can’t accept the truth denied how stable, even prosperous, the country was. He was the first President in over 30 years that was going to leave the office on a high economic footing, regardless of whoever won the elections.
The armed forces finally got new toys. Take note that Arroyo pretty much derailed any military improvement for nearly 10 years. 10 FUCKING YEARS. Aquino addressed that by getting brand new stuff rather than only refurbished and hand-me downs. Our fighting forces could actually retire the way past their time assault rifles. Our Air Force got, and continue to get, actual jets that aren’t just training props. We are getting Frigates, brand new ones, bidded and bought in the next few years.
And he wisely stood his ground and spat in Red China’s face. Where his predecessors looked up in the sky and pretended it’s not their problem, he pushed for recognition in the world arena that the bully dragon would not simply stride uncontested in OUR backyard. And we got support. HEAPS OF SUPPORT. Our neighbors realized they didn’t have to let Red China do as it pleases. That singular defiance made us realize again we are of noble, fearless blood.
And, fuck, there was an active DRUG OFFENSIVE. But people don’t recall because they aren’t named something fancy like OPLAN DOUBLE BARREL ALPHA (which really sounds like a movie starring Derek Dee, Ronald Gan Ledesma, and Mikey Arroyo). Just take a look at all the successful operations done which are documented in news. NOBODY TALKS ABOUT THOSE BECAUSE THEY WEREN’T IN-YOUR-FACE AND FEW CASUALTIES INVOLVED BY COMPARISON TO TODAY. It’s idiotic to think just because the “drug war” now is more bombastic that it is more effective. Quite the contrary, if you take off your Duterte covered glasses.
Yes, Aquino had faults. Lots of them. But he never made the country as chaotic and divisive as it is today. And he never compromised our national identity. I’d rather have a boring and lackluster president that has more positive, long term results, than one that is all entertaining bravado and big talk, but has little regard for the laws, lives, and the land he is sworn to protect.
Just for your information. Use your discernment.
By: Bernard Ong
Rodrigo Duterte is ill-advised – by his own followers & the ‘best and the brightest’ Cabinet. Their constant refrain has been to say “the European Union doesn’t know conditions in the Philippines. We have a Drug War to save our country. It is none of your business”.
This is not as simple as the “Huwag kayo makiaalam” message that gunmen tell bystanders while they kill their intended victim.
Let’s get the obvious out of the way:
1. EU – on its own & via its member countries – has hundreds of staff in various agencies & embassies in the Philippines. EU itself has its own embassy & ambassador. They are on the ground here. They wake up to the same news headlines – EJKs, warped justice – as you & me. They know the conditions in the Philippines.
2. Drug War – with killings & collateral damage – has been tried in many other countries before Duterte became president. It has failed elsewhere. In fact, it has been worked in Davao City for 20+ years. Also failed there. Still a lot of drug users there as evidenced by thousands of surrenders after Duterte became president.
Next, I’ll come to ‘None of your business.’
PHILIPPINES BENEFITS FROM EU
Let me count the ways:
1. EU is the Philippines third-largest export market worth €6.6B or $7.3B in 2016. This represents 12% of our total exports. In contrast, Philippines is only 38th largest market for EU worldwide – with only 0.4% share of total exports. We need them more than they need us.
2. Our imports from EU was $6.8B in 2016. This means we had a favorable $0.5B trade surplus. In contrast, our exports to China was $6.1B while our imports were $15B for a whopping $8.9B trade deficit. More banana exports from Davao won’t be enough. Mining closures will reduce one of our top exports to China.
3. EU is historically the largest source of foreign direct investment (not loans, not ‘hot money’) in the Philippines. It has a foreign direct investment stock of over $6B.
4. EU is also second-largest source of OFW remittances and fifth-largest source of tourist arrivals.
PH ENJOYS EU TRADE PERKS. WANTS MORE
1. PH enjoys first GSP (Generalized System of Preferences) – a mechanism for help poor countries develop by providing them lower tariffs, higher quotas to developed markets.
2. The Philippines was granted GSP+ status by EU in 2014. It is the only country in ASEAN and currently 1 of only 8 countries in the world with GSP+ privileges.
3. EU GSP+ is more generous than GSP. PH can export to EU at zero-tariff, zero-quota on 6,000+ products. There are conditions attached to a country to avail of GSP+. #1 non-diversification of exports (concentrate on few items) #2 low share of EU market #3 ratification & effective implementation of 27 international conventions on human & labor rights, environment & governance principles.
4. PH wants to obtain a Free Trade Agreement – covering most, if not all products – with EU. FTA is even better than GSP+. This will also spur further investment by EU companies in the country as the ability to ship components & raw materials between EU and PH makes their supply chains more efficient.
5. EU has already completed FTA with Singapore (2014) and Vietnam (2015). It also has ongoing negotiations with Malaysia, Indonesia & Thailand. Without an EU-PH FTA, Philippines will lag farther behind its neighbors who have one.
BEHAVE IF YOU WANT OUR EUROS
The proposition of EU is simple. Stick to international conventions (no EKJ, respect Human Rights, no Death Penalty, protect labor, etc. , so you can keep GSP+. And maybe we can progress to FTA. European ‘conditions’ are universal conventions of civilized humanity.
What is there to dislike with the “ratification & effective implementation of 27 international conventions on human & labor rights, environment & governance”? These are universal and not just European conferences. Every country should work to adopt these.
This is a different proposition from that of China: Give us your islands-and-seas in exchange for loans-and-trains. The Chinese plan is self-serving – mainly to obtain strategic geopolitical outposts to project their power & to secure raw materials to feed their economy.
EVERYBODY SUFFERS UNDER THE CURRENT PATH
If the Philippines persists on its present path – EJKs, Death Squads, trumped-up charges, violations of due process, Death Penalty, reduced age of criminal liability, plunder – we will not get FTA and will likely lose our GSP+.
Note that the US-led Millennium Challenge Corp already deferred its decision in Dec 2016 on new funding for the Philippines after its first round of $434m ended. Our damaged reputation is a global problem, not just with EU.
You can cry to high heavens “Stop interfering in our internal affairs. We can kill whoever we want.” Sure, but then count your losses without GSP+ and FTA. That is EU’s business. Can’t tell them who to grant special economic privileges. Weep while Vietnam & Indonesia leave you in the dust & modernize like Singapore.
Less trade. Fewer investments. Fewer jobs. Fewer taxes. Fewer funds for infrastructure & social services. Weaker peso. More expensive fuel. Higher inflation. More dependence on China. Give up more islands-and-seas, so they bail us out.
It is not just the drug suspects, innocents & their families who suffer from this Drug War and its tactics, it will be all of us. Except for a few select cronies who will be middlemen for China.
What will happen if you go after powerful personalities here in the Philippines? I will show you here what – as well as where, why and how all those accusations against Senator Leila de Lima started.
- During the administration of G.M.A, then justice minister de Lima filed a case against Senator Panfilo Lacson for Dacer-Corbito murder case and ordered his arrest. She made the senator run as a fugitive for over a year, something that probably hurt the proud senator’s macho ego and therefore, something he never forgot. (According to Senator Miriam D. Santiago, he had been under the care of his alleged patron, Senator Juan P. Enrile during that time.)
- After then Justice Secretary de Lima had Senators Enrile, Jinggoy Estrada and Bong Revilla (whom I will – together with Lacson – call ‘the gang‘ hereafter) jailed for P.D.A.F. scam, Senator Lacson started to make his moves…
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