Sunday, June 05, 2005

NR0604:Thanks but no thanks, Mrs. President

News Release
June 4, 2005
From the Office of Anakpawis Representative Crispin Beltran

Keep your false sympathy to yourself, Mrs. President” – Rep. Beltran

Anakpawis Representative Crispin Beltran today dcried President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s statement that she “feels the Filipino people’s pain” and that she understands and regrets the crisis the people are going through.

“President Arroyo is adding massive insult to already grievous injury. Her false sympathy does not touch anyone. She and her administration are incapable of even empathizing with the Filipino people and their economic woes and tribulations because this govenrment’s policies are at the core of these woes. The president is better off shutting up on this matter because she’s only digging a deeper hole for herself,” he said.

The veteran labor leader said that for all her and her spokespersons’ declarations that they are doing everything they can to help Filipinos cope with the crisis, “Their deeds and actions speak more deafeningly that any of their words and excuses.”

“Has the president done anything decisive against the oil price hikes? No. Has she done anything to stop rising electricity and water rates? Again, no. Is there ay significant, positive change in the lives of the poor majority since she came into power? Can fish crawl on land and is the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) an graft and corruption-free institution?”

Beltran challenged the President to prove her sincerity that she “feels the people’s pain” and “actually do something to relieve the pain.”

“But it’s not just a headache or minor back pain we’re talking about here. What’s needed is major surgery, but the President is ony willing to offer a tablet of paracetamol. If she’s serious about her sympathy, then she will defy the dictates of foreign creditors and run the risk of earning their ire by vetoing the new tax measures such as the expanded VAT and call on Congress to repeal economic laws that cause Filipinos anguish,” he said. Among these laws, Beltran said, were the EPIRA (Electric Power Industry Reform Act) EPIRA, the oil deregulation law, and the wage rationalization law which keeps wages nailed to the floor.

The veteran labor leader said that the President’s plummetting ratings will not be able to recover so easily given that the main cause of the people’s dissatisfaction and even digust with her is the economic crisis.

“Nope, the photo-opportunity shots of her kissing babies and hugging the elderly will not save the president this time.The Arroyo admnistration is a rapidly deteriorating ship with so many holes just barely plugged in to keep it from completely sinking,” he said. “Another successive round of oil price hikes, electricity rate increases and more lay-offs should make more Filipinos throw in the towel and give up on this administration. As for the middle sections of society, the spate of political killings of journalists and activists, as well as the relentless financial scandals involving the president and members of the First Family are certain to fuel the fire of moral outrage,” he said. “We might be seeing yet another people’s uprising in the making, and it’s not farfetched that the disgruntled rank-and-file of the AFP will support the Filipino people yet again in calling for the relief of the president.”#


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