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January 23, 2014 Leave a comment Go to comments

Ronald Roy — Jan. 23, 2014

Compassion is among the alluring attributes of a president. In a country of Filipinos known to be “maawain” (compassionate) by nature, we should seriously note that Pres. Ferdinand E. Marcos released from imprisonment an opposition senator, Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino Jr., so he could go abroad for a by-pass surgery certified as urgent by Manila’s best cardiologists. The ailing senator was then confined at Fort Bonifacio after having been sentenced to death by a Military Tribunal.
The dictator had in fact rejected earlier pleas from Ninoy that he instead be placed under house arrest because of constant chest pains. But Marcos knew that military confinement was what was best for the latter’s security, since his detention at home would have made him an open target, and Marcos was too smart to ignore a probable plot by Communists to assassinate Aquino in order to compromise him as the principal suspect. It was thus a dilemma of sorts for both men.
However, fortunately for Macoy and Ninoy, the former was — as I personally knew him — so blessed with a “pusong mamon” (soft heart) that he authorized the latter’s immediate trip abroad for that treatment. While Ninoy was a beneficiary of Marcos’ compassion, can we now expect his son P-Noy to show as much compassion for former Pres. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo who is in dire need of a vertebral surgery, considering that her case before the Sandiganbayan is still pending trial (meaning, she’s still presumed innocent), while Ninoy had already been convicted when allowed to leave the country?
Still languishing in the presidential suite of the VMMC (Veterans Memorial Medical Center), Gloria gloomily hopes against hope her petition for bail will be granted, considering that her three co-accused have long been out on bail. [Plunder charges involving intelligence funds of the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) had been brought against her, PCSO Chairman Sergio Valencia, and former Directors Manoling Morato and Raymundo Roquero.]

How Cold Can A Human Heart Be?
Over the past month, GMA has been visited by such dignitaries as former presidents Fidel Ramos and Estrada, former VP Noli de Castro, Archbishop Oscar Cruz, Bishop Ramon Arguelles and Bro. Eddie Villanueva, not to mention “faceless” others who come to wish her well. They have all seen a very debilitated Gloria.
She weighs a mere 70 pounds! Extreme pain prevents her from masticating and swallowing, such that her meals must first be ground and mashed each time. Certainly, anyone in Gloria’s place could consider her denial of bail to be utterly unjust, most especially where a junior member of the Sandiganbayan has reportedly leapfrogged to the top post with an order not to grant her bail petition. One wonders, truly, how cold a human heart can be.

Will Bong’s Tear Jerker Succeed?
One wonders too how far Sen. Bong Revilla will go in his attempt to exculpate himself from any liability that may arise from the pork-related plunder charges that the National Bureau of Investigation leveled against him some time ago. Revilla’s privilege speech — albeit in sub-standard English, and obviously prepared without the aid of a lawyer who would have taught him the difference between “impeach” and “convict” — was a succinct denial of the charges, although he did not say he did not receive kickbacks.
He confidently portrayed himself as a victim whose signature had been forged on a number of documents in some design to derail his chances for a higher office in the forthcoming 2016 elections. I don’t think he did well enough to earn exculpation, notwithstanding the mawkish sight of him embracing his infirm father fighting back tears on a wheelchair — an act seen as a cinematic tear jerker scripted to win support from movie land’s teeming masa, his bailiwick.

P-Noy’s Control Of Solons
Reacting to Bong Revilla’s privilege speech, P-Noy nonchalantly denied he ever influenced any senator- judge at CJ Renato C. Corona’s impeachment trial to convict the respondent. However, he seemed sheepish in explaining that he had invited some senators to the Palace before rendition of the verdict, supposedly to inform them of “outside pressures” out to ensure Corona’s acquittal, and that he merely wanted them to know he frowned on these pressures as anathema to what a proper impeachment should be.
Ha?! If that was the case, can anyone explain the cloak-and-dagger manner of Revilla’s being sneaked into the Palace grounds by no less than DILG Sec. Mar Roxas?! The fact is: President Noynoy’s espousal of evidence-based impeachment decisions is hypocritical lip service, totally opposite his manifest influence, if not control, of both Houses of Congress in the impeachment of CJ Renato C. Corona.

It is elementary that impeachments pertain to the exclusive domain of the House of Representatives and the Senate. The House impeaches; the Senate tries then decides. Nowhere in the constitution is the President given a role to play in impeachments.
The fact that impeachments are “political” does not confer him that role. “Political” here means impeachments are activities exclusively engaged in by legislators in REPRESENTATION of their respective constituencies. An Impeachment Court should behave like a court of justice impervious to public pressures. Otherwise, we may as well let impeachments be done by survey.
From a pragmatic standpoint, the President’s impeachment would be an exercise in futility because he remains in full control of both Houses of Congress.

(https://musingsbyroy.wordpress.com | 09186449517 | @ronald8roy | #musingsbyroy)

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