DUCKY PAREDES: FATAL ERROR

MANILA, OCTOBER 24, 2003  (MALAYA) THE Senate Blue Ribbon committee may have dealt its investigatory powers a mortal and fatal blow.

A resolution signed by the lapdogs of Jose Pidal has now become part of the jurisprudence of the Blue Ribbon committee. In an effort to protect Ignacio Arroyo, the second Jose Pidal, Joker Arroyo, Blue Ribbon Chairman, has created a precedent that makes it possible for future witnesses to invoke their right to privacy on just about anything that the Senate may want to know.

Remember that Ignacio volunteered to the public the lie that he, and not his big brother Mike, was Jose Pidal; then, when asked to give further details, the scammer that he is, Ignacio invoked his right to privacy. As a private individual, said Iggy, the Senate could not force him to testify on anything. And Joker Arroyo sustained this view. Ten of the 19 Blue Ribbon members agreed with Joker and the Pidals!

In the future, those who refuse to testify to the Blue Ribbon committee, once the most feared of all investigating committees, can now do as Iggy did and refuse to say anything to the Senate since they are, like Iggy, private citizens, after all!

Sen. Edgardo Angara, who heads the electoral reforms committee has another resolution that says the right to privacy is "not absolute." It is always subordinate "to the paramount rights of the public."

"Legislative inquiry is one of the most common and acceptable forms of encroachment into the right to privacy. This power is intimately connected with the right of the public to information of matters of public concern. And as long as the matter concerns this right to know of the public, Congress can compel information from the persons appearing in inquiries of legislation."

As far as Joker's committee is concerned, however, everything is over. The Pidal issue has conveniently died on its operating table.

According to information that was never really investigated by the Senate, Mike Arroyo, the first Jose Pidal, funded Joker Arroyo's campaign for the Senate. Okay, Joker has paid back that debt with interest. Too bad that to do it, he had to pull out all of the teeth of the formerly dreaded Blue Ribbon committee.

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Fraport AG is doing the right thing by not agreeing to testify before the Blue Ribbon committee on its complaint filed with the World Bank. Why should it? Can Fraport get any other deal from Joker Arroyo that would be better than the railroading it received from the Supreme Court of Hilario Davide Jr.?

Says Joker: "How will they prove the hanky panky if they will not support their allegations?" Heck! Even if they support their allegations, Joker will probably ask them for the original documents, refuse to accept copies and will, anyway, surely rule for the Pidals.

The Germans must be wise to the ways of Joker Arroyo which is why they will not have anything to do with the Senate or the courts, all of which are under the thumb of their main tormentor - that Pidal woman!

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For the country, it is in our best interest to have Terminal 3 operating as soon as possible. Every day's delay means that there will be more money that has to be spent refurbishing the terminal before we can eventually start it up.

It is a fact of life that installed air-conditioning units and conveyor belts deteriorate and do so much faster when they are not in use for extended periods. In a few more months, all of those that have been installed in Terminal 3 will have to undergo a major overhaul prior to use.

I am seeing here a repeat of the Bataan nuclear power plant. After Marcos had bought an overpriced plant, the Aquino government refused to use it and sued Westinghouse. In the meantime, we had to pay the bank loans and will continue to do so until 2007. This is money down the drain because we never saw one watt of electricity come out of the BNPP. Yet, when the Aquino government came in, the BNPP was just a month away from full operation, On Terminal 3, surely, at some point in time, we will have to pay Fraport and Piatco no matter that we would never have used Terminal 3. The question is this: Would we have gotten any use of the money that we will eventually have to pay them or is this money going the way of the BNPP bank loans where a poor, underdeveloped and non-developing country is paying through the nose for something that it never used - all because of politics!

I do not condone the crimes committed by Fraport and Piatco in getting their project through the bureaucratic maze. Still, being practical, since we will eventually have to pay for it, no matter what, we might as well get some service out of that money. We might as well get something from that money besides political cookie points.

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We have a letter: "Having lived in Canada for eighteen years, I think the (Party system) Parliamentary form of government will be the better type of government for the Philippines. The party that has won the most number of members to the parliament will become the majority government and the leader of the party becomes the prime minister of the country.

"There are so many young, smart, talented, honest, trustworthy, and more patriotic individuals in the Philippines that can run our government much better than all of these politicians that belongs to any political parties in the country today. The sad thing is these individuals are not in the entertainment world, do not belong to the rich families, not a son or daughter or relative of a now serving corrupt politician or was high ranking officer in the Philippine Armed Forces or National Police.

"Running as a candidate without so much wealth with goons against him has a slim chance to win, if any, in the present type of government. A Canadian tradesman or a union leader has better chances of winning in a government election than a very successful lawyer or businessman.

"Waiting for another six years after 2004 election is too long. How long would these politicians put their act together? Our country needs a general overhaul at the earliest time possible. The people have waited for so long.

"I had the opportunity to visit our beloved Philippines at least once in every three years until last July-October 2002. From Marcos, Aquino, Ramos, Estrada and Arroyo, I did not see or feel any sign that could strongly make me to decide to live there after my retirement. I know many of us in the North America are thinking of going home there for good someday. More power to you." - Manny San Luis

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I agree with you, Manny. Unfortunately the ruling class (including all the crooks in politics) have a lock on power in this country. They will not change the system nor give up their lock on it that easily.

Email address: duckyparedes@yahoo.com


Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi

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