Wednesday, January 18, 2006


As former President Corazon Aquino so clearly explained in her recent statement declining participation in the Council of State, the most pressing problem impinging on the national interest is neither political nor economic in nature. It is a moral issue.” We maintain that Mrs. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo remains the obstacle to national reconciliation, and the strengthening, instead of the erosion, of our democratic way of life, and the return of the optimism, dynamism, and trust, that are necessary to improve the prospects of our country.

Mrs. Arroyo continues to think that democracy is merely about photo opportunities, and that the dialogue of democracy should be replaced by a monologue she delivers from within the comfort of the presidential palace. She continues to turn a blind eye to the moral and political bankruptcy of her government. She continues to play deaf to the consistent, and ever-increasing, clamor for her to make the ultimate and necessary sacrifice of relinquishing power. She continues to remain mute in the face of the public’s demand for her to make an accounting of her actions.

But we in the Black & White Movement believe it is wrong to think that the crisis confronting our country begins and ends with Mrs. Arroyo. It includes a vast army of the corrupt, selfish, and incompetent. The crisis we continue to face requires much more than Mrs. Arroyo’s resignation, impeachment, or ouster. It demands accountability and reforms in other institutions of the state as well.

Among the institutions that require to be cleansed and reformed is the Commission on Elections. We support the call made by so many concerned sectors, for Comelec Chairman Benjamin Abalos and all incumbent Comelec commissioners, to immediately resign. We support the need to have the present commissioners and their predecessors implicated in immoral and illegal transactions, to be brought to justice.

As the Senate of the Philippines has pointed out, the Comelec commissioners must go. A Supreme Court decision has found them culpable for their handling of anomalous contracts. The Ombudsman, however, has failed to follow-up the Supreme Court decision with an investigation and the filing of appropriate charges.

If justice delayed is justice denied, then the refusal of the executive department and of the Ombudsman, to implement the Supreme Court’s decision or heed the Senate’s statesmanlike call for action, can only be assumed to mean Mrs. Arroyo is not interested in fair elections – whether national, local, or in the form of a referendum.

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