Monday, July 11, 2005

NR0711:On CBCP's support for GMA; Council of Unity

Mula sa Tanggapan ni Anakpawis Rep. Crispin BeltranNews Release July 11, 2005 House of Representatives, South Wing Rm 602
931-6615 Ina Alleco R. Silverio, Chief of Staff
Cellphone number 09213907362

CBCP isolating self from its flock, abetting PGMA’s sins against the people; Council of Unity to decide transition president and call for special elections

Anakpawis Representative Crispin Beltran today said that the decision of the Catholic Bishop’s Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) to reject calls for the resignation of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo was a disappointment, and will inevitably cause the institution’s isolation from the people.

“It’s an extreme disappointment that the CBCP has chosen to stand by Pres. Arroyo when the rest of the nation is aligning themselves against her corrupt and illegitimate administration. By opposing calls for the removal of a corrupt presidency, the leadership of the CBCP is abetting Pres. Arroyo’s sins against the Filipino people. Apart from stealing the people’s mandate in the last elections, Pres. Arroyo has implemented and continues to implement economic programs that maim and mangle the welfare and livelihood of millions of Filipinos. Politically, Pres. Arroyo has lost all credibility and legitimacy to lead; her record of leadership is full of black marks,” he said.

The veteran labor leader turned lawmaker in the meantime expressed strong opposition to the CBCP’s stand against the creation of a transitory council of leadership. “What do these Church leaders want – more of the same kind of leadership? They want to subject the Filipino people to more years of exploitation, corruption and political repression? A complete break-away from the rotten-to-core system of governance is what will help this nation on the way to recovery and renewal,” he said.

“The feasibility of a patriotic and the democratic council of leaders to ensure that this time the interests and participation of the masses and middle strata in governance. It will represent all the effective forces that worked for the removal of Pres. Arroyo from power. It will be chosen by a people’s congress upon GMA’s resignation and the people’s rejection of Noli de Castro as successor.”

Beltran gave flesh to the Council of Unity, saying that its members will chosen by a people’s congress and by acclamation. “The members of this Council will then choose by consensus the transition head of state and will set the time for a special elections within an immediate period. “This council will also begin to carry out basic reforms to rebuild the economy ravaged by liberalization policies and uplift the life of impoverished Filipinos, promote democracy, national freedom and unity.”

The activist lawmaker reiterated his strong stand against vice-president Noli de Castro as GMA’s successor.“Mr. de Castro cannot succeed GMA. To allow him to become president would be akin to hitting our own heads against the hardest walls. He is simply not qualified for the task – he would be yet another lame-duck president who will be controlled and manipulated by various advisers whose loyalties are not to the Filipino people but to big business interests and the economic elite,” he said.

“The vice-president has not been in office for one year, but he has not made any definitive stand on issues affecting the Filipino people such as the oil price hikes, the electricity rate increases, widespread joblessness, and even the intensifying political repression and militarization in the provinces. We cannot expect any miracles from Noli de Castro. He has neither the political will, ability and decisiveness to be an effective leader and help this country make an 180-degree turn,” he said.#


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