PALACE AIDE: AQUINO NOT VONDICTIVE; GMA MUST ACCOUNT FOR HER ACTS


[PHOTO - READY FOR JAIL? What will it be for Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo? Continued hospital arrest in a government military hospital or house arrest? AP]

MANILA, NOVEMBER 28, 2011 (INQUIRER) By Christian V. Esguerra - What drives President Benigno Aquino in his effort to prosecute his immediate predecessor for alleged corruption and election fraud?

Malacañang on Saturday defended the President against an impression he was going after ex-President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, now a Pampanga congressional representative, out of sheer “vindictiveness.”

“This is not about vindictiveness. This is not about political persecution. This is about accountability,” deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said in her weekly media forum aired over Radyo ng Bayan.

Valte reminded the President’s critics that if his efforts against Arroyo were borne out of spite, his administration should have filed a string of charges against her “since day one.”

“Government is in a position to do so many things to abuse power, but that is not the style of President Aquino,” she said. “We go through the right process.”

Valte noted that no less than the camp of Arroyo had promised to face the charges in the proper forum. “This is that day. They will have their day in court,” she said.

One of Arroyo’s attending physicians on Friday all but ended speculation about her real medical condition, testifying in court that she was now “medically fit” to leave the St. Luke’s Medical Center in Taguig City.

“As far as my sub-specialty is concerned, she is fit to be treated as an outpatient,” Dr. Mario Ver, an orthopedic surgeon, told the court.

Valte said Arroyo’s lawyers and spokespersons should now refrain from talking about her medical condition in media and instead leave the matter to her doctors.

“Have pity on the doctors. Don’t issue your own medical bulletin because you are not doctors,” she said in Filipino. “Even I, when asked if President Aquino has colds, don’t respond because I am not a doctor.”

Valte added: “When it comes to (Arroyo’s) medical condition, let’s just allow her doctors to speak about it.”

Senator Teofisto Guingona III, head of the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee, earlier announced that it would summon Arroyo’s doctors to testify on her real medical condition. His committee, along with the committee on electoral reforms, is set to resume on Nov. 29 its inquiry into alleged election fraud under the Arroyo administration.

Guingona said on Saturday that the committee would no longer summon the doctors, saying their court testimony “clearly established the true and accurate medical condition of Mrs. Arroyo.”

“The committee has therefore decided that there is no more need to invite the said doctors,” he said in a statement.

INQUIRER OPINION:

Aquino and Arroyo of the same mold By Ramon Tulfo Philippine Daily Inquirer 11:13 pm | Monday, November 21st, 2011 17share474 453 President Aquino and Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo are of the same mold.

Both do not have the scruples to use the vast powers of government against critics—in the case of Arroyo and her husband Mike—and people who have hurt him and his family in the past, in the case of Aquino.

Aquino hates the Arroyos like the plague.

But hasn’t P-Noy been told that his enemy complements the worse part of himself?

The person we hate most has the traits we don’t like in ourselves.

So the reason P-Noy hates GMA is because they are of the same character.

* * *

P-Noy hates Ferdinand Marcos for the same reason.

Both P-Noy and Marcos share one thing in common: One was a dictator and the other is a budding dictator.

* * *

That’s the reason why sages or spiritual masters of the ages, like Jesus of Nazareth and Gautama Buddha, teach us to love our enemies.

Our enemies are ourselves.

We are also taught by spiritual masters to love our neighbor because you and he come from the same source.

So when you hurt your neighbor, you hurt yourself in the long run, following that line of teaching.

That’s Buddha’s Law of Karma.

That’s Jesus’ Golden Rule: Do unto others as you would want others to do unto you.

* * *

What Gloria and Mike Arroyo did to their critics—using their vast powers to harass them—is now being done to them by P-Noy.

Years from now when P-Noy is out of power, he will likewise experience what he’s now doing to Gloria and Mike.

The Law of Karma comes full circle.

* * *

What’s this I heard from the Malacañang grapevine about a bad joke made by a Cabinet official during a meeting that P-Noy had with his Cabinet over the showdown between his government and the Supreme Court?

Budget Secretary Butch Abad allegedly butted in during a discussion on why Gloria and her husband should not be allowed to leave the country: “Why don’t we just shoot her at the tarmac?”

Abad was referring to the assassination of Sen. Ninoy Aquino at the tarmac of the then Manila International Airport (since then renamed after the martyr) as he came down from a China Airlines jetliner.

In fairness to P-Noy, he glared at Abad.

“This is no laughing matter, Butch,” P-Noy told Abad.

If this story is true, Abad typifies the kind of advisers P-Noy has in his government.

Aquino missed his chance at greatness By Ramon Tulfo Philippine Daily Inquirer 10:32 pm | Friday, November 25th, 2011 4share90 85

President Noy will go down in history as the chief executive who was defeated and humiliated by the Supreme Court in a power struggle.

The President may have won in the first round of his fight with the high tribunal when he disobeyed its order granting his predecessor, Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, permission to travel abroad to seek medical treatment.

He may have also won the second round when he and his minions suddenly produced a warrant of arrest for GMA from a Pasay City court judge who was notorious for taking his time in handling cases.

Although groggy from punches received from Malacañang, the high tribunal was not knocked out.

It rallied on the third round and hit the President where it hurt most—Hacienda Luisita.

The high court has ruled that the vast farmlands that P-Noy’s Cojuangco clan owns should be distributed to its workers.

The Cojuangcos continued to hold on to the land even after then President Corazon Cojuangco Aquino, P-Noy’s late mother, ordered all agricultural lands distributed to tenant-farmers as mandated by the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law.

The Cojuangcos even ignored adverse public opinion when several farm workers who picketed the gates of Hacienda Luisita were killed years ago in a clash with police and the military.

* * *

If the President had foresight, he would have convinced relatives on his mother’s side to apportion the 6,000-hectare estate to its farm workers once he got elected.

P-Noy missed his chance at greatness.

He will never be able to recover from the defeat he suffered in the hands of the Supreme Court.

* * *

Mayor Rey Uy of Tagum City is showing his counterparts in other towns and cities in the country how bayanihan, or team spirit, works.

Every day, city hall employees and private citizens work hand in hand at the three-hectare city motor pool making chairs, tables and desks for schoolchildren.

The furniture is distributed free to public elementary schools in the provinces of Davao del Norte and Compostela Valley that do not have them.

The chairs, tables and desks are made from logs confiscated by the city from illegal loggers.

Hundreds of confiscated logs are piled up in one corner of the city motor pool.

The city hall employees and private citizens don’t receive any pay for their efforts.

They volunteer for the job.

Noemi Eugenio of the city’s engineering office and Janet Ragos of the city’s architect office said they volunteered their time because Mayor Uy has set a good example for others to follow.

The mayor himself spends a few hours each day to help paint the school furniture.


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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