Sunday, October 17, 2004

NR1018:GMA as commander in chief of PNP, AFP

Mula sa Tanggapan ni Anakpawis Rep. Crispin B. Beltran
News Release October 18 , 2004
House of Representatives, South Wing Rm 602
931-6615 Ina Alleco R. Silverio, chief of staff
Celphone number 09213907362

PGMA as commander-in-chief of the armed forces is deliberately trying to
keep to the sidelines over raging issues of corruption in the PNP and AFP;
implications on the presidency serious - Rep. Beltran

Anakpawis Representative Crispin Beltran today said that Malacanang's call
against corruption has fallen flat on its face because of the executive's
lack of sincere and strong political will to route out the corrupt high-ranking
officials in the civilian, police and military bureaucracy.

Beltran said that President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo continues to call for
investigations into the financial and performance records of officials now
being accused of corruption, but she has yet to issue a stronger stand against
these erring officials. "None have been suspended, and none have been fired.
The rigmarole of placing new appointments in the key government posts has also
been exposed - the President is only recycling individuals, including those
who have been accused of graft and corruption and other abuses of power," he

Beltran said that the President's jelly-fish, wishty-washy attitude as
president and commander-in-chief of the armed forces only strengthen
suspicions that the paper trail of all the corruption schemes and scams now
being exposed in the PNP and AFP lead to Malacanang.

"As commander-in-chief of the armed forces, the rank and file look up to
Pres. Arroyo to put an end to the systemic corruption in the PNP and the AFP;
but the president chooses to stay safe and in the sidelines. This is a
definite sign that Pres. Arroyo knows how serious the exposes are, and of their
implications on her office and leadership," he concluded.#

Beltran said that latest reports exposing a widespread payroll racket in the
Philippine National Police (PNP) are more than enough reason to conduct a
thorough revamp in the PNP leadership. He said that President Arroyo's refusal
to overhaul the PNP leadership from top to bottom guarantees that corruption
will never be taken out of the PNP. This, he also said, also goes for t he
corruption within the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP)."Lifestyle checks
are so weak a response to this sewer of a problem. Criminal actions must be
pursued against those who are accused of massive corruption," he said.

"The President is being very careful and considerate when it comes to
addressing issues of corruption involving the armed forces. She is most
likely well aware of how volatile the situation is when it comes to the rank
and file of the police and military. There is deep demoralization within the
ranks, and for all the calls for sobriety, it will not be surprising if there
will be uprisings from the ranks who are sickened and disgusted by the corrupt
leadership and the executive's refusal to step in and take decisive action," he

Finally, Beltran said that it was not so much the scourge of terrorism that
the national government should address, but the alarming level of corruption
in the topmost levels of the bureaucracy. "The days are over when top
officials of the government can sound high and mighty in saying that they are
at the forefront of the fight versus corruption and their propaganda desk
project campaigns saying that it's the small-time racketeers in the
bureaucracy that are to blame. These days, it's the heads of the most
influential agencies and departments who are in the firing line for their fat
paychecks, and unexplained wealth," he said.#


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