Sunday, July 24, 2005

NR0724:Congress' 2nd session NOT business as usual

From the Office of Anakpawis Rep. Crispin Beltran
News Release
July 24, 2005

13th Congress’ 2nd session will not be business as usual; GMA allies challenged to respect the impeachment process and forward the complaint to the Senate

Anakpawis Representative Crispin Beltran today said that President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s state of the nation address (SONA) tomorrow will go down in history as one of the most booed and hissed-at speeches in Philippine history. He said that the SONA is in fact serving as something like an introductory or opening arguments to the impeachment trial now looming ahead of the President. "The moment she begins her speech, we will be making note of how many lies and excuses she will be making. Mrs. Arroyo tries to keep a façade of strength and confidence, but it’s certain that she’s actually shaking in her petite shoes. Public opinion has swung exactly opposite and against her, and the reactions to the SONA will be instructive to hear," he said.

"Pres. Arroyo can try to defend herself tomorrow, but she will not be able to change anyone’s minds. Even before he tape scandal broke out, she has already committed quite a shocking number of impeachable offenses, manily undermining the Filipino people’s economic welfare and violating their civil and human rights. The electoral fraud expose is the proverbial straw that broke the camel’s back," he said.

The veteran labor leader turned lawmaker predicted that the 13th Congress’ second session will be focused mainly on the impeachment complaint against Mrs. Arroyo. "It will not be business as usual in Congress. All other legislative measures Malacanang wants its allies in Congress to railroad will have to be put in the backburner," he said. "Not even the most staunch defenders of the president will be able to say that the corruption and fraud charges against the president are parts of some destabilization plot. If it were, the entire nation is very involved in this plot and the surveys even indicate that many are in support of it," he said.

Beltran said that that was one more reason to support the impeachment complaint: "Because of it, Malacanang’s anti-people legislative agenda will be out on hold and Filipinos will get a little reprieve from the anti-poor legislative measures that Pres. Arroyo and her allies keep railroading. "

Beltran and fellow Anakpawis solon Rafael Mariano as well as the other lawmakers of Bayan Muna and Gabriela Women’s Party are co-signatories of the impeachment complaint which will be filed in Congress first thing tomorrow morning. He said under ideal circumstances and if justice were truly allowed to apply, the complaint will be seen as more than enough to have the president impeached.

"The president swore that she will abide by the legal process of impeachment, " he said. "Now let’s see if her allies in the House will do the same and not get in the way of the impeachment process. Among the top legal brains in the country have worked on the complaint and the arguments cannot be easily dismissed. If Pres. Arroyo’s allies in the House get it into their heads to kill the complaint, there will be hell to pay, and the remaining number of Filipinos who still think the impeachment process has credibility will most likely rethink their stand and join the calls for the president’s ouster via popular people’s uprising," he said. #

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