Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Keep eye on Malacanang's possible appointees to replace Evardone in the National Printing Office

Wednesday March 7, 2007

Keep eye on Malacanang's possible appointees to replace Evardone in the National Printing Office

Anakpawis Representative and political detainee Crispin Beltran today said that there could be more than meet's the eye to Malacanang's move to dismiss the director of the National Printing Office (NPO) director Felipe Evardone for alleged graft and procurement violations. He said that Comelec chairman Benjamin Abalos should oversee the preparations for the printing of materials himself, and invite anti-electoral fraud groups to assist.

Beltran said that Malacanang's choice for Evardone's replacement as head of the NPO must not have any links with the administration, the candidates of Team Unity, or the presidential family mainly First Gentleman Mike Arroyo.

"Evardone's guilt or innocence aside, Malacanang's sudden determination to overhaul the leadership of the NPO is suspect, given that the said that agency is charge of printing the government's standard and accountable forms, including election paraphernalia such as official ballots, election returns (ERs) and certificates of canvass (COCs)," he said. "Malacanang could very well put its own men and women in the NPO and manipulate the election paraphernalia, or print excess materials that would inevitably used to serve fraudulent, election-related means."

Beltran said that the printing and distribution of electoral paraphernalia should be strictly monitored not just by the Commission on Elections, (COMELEC), but by clean election watchdogs. He said that in the May 2004 elections, the lack of security and authenticity of election materials were among the reasons contributing to the initial success of the Macapagal-Arroyo camp's fraud campaign to win the presidential elections.

"We don't want a repeat of the May 2004 elections wherein there were clear ad unmistakable indications that the results, not just through the usual means of vote padding and vote shaving, but through the actual manipulation of the ERs. Experts pointed out that there were highly irregular thumbprints in countless election returns, clean taras in many other ERs and still many other irregularities that could have only been perpetrated long before the actual elections and the final tabulation of results," he said.

No. 2 Solon cites US State Department's report on killings in the Philippines

Anakpawis Rep. Beltran today lauded the report prepared and released recently by the US State Department's Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor. "Here is another nail on the coffin of the Macapagal-Arroyo government's human rights record. Try as it might, the Arroyo administration is unable to contain the constantly growing international condemnation and outrage against the extrajudicial killings in the Philippines," he said.

The US State Department annual human rights report said that there was a 'climate of impunity' in the Philippines that allowed for the e murder of journalists, churchmen and political activists. It charged members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines and Philippine National Police with committing acts of physical and psychological abuse on suspects and detainees, and there were instances of torture.

"Unlike what it did to the Melo Commission's Report and the initial report prepared by UN Human Rights Commission special rapporteur on extra-judicial killings Philip Alston, Malacananang will not be able to simply wave away a report by the US State Department short of complaining to US Pres. George W. Bush," he said. "Pres. Arroyo continues to shield and protect the AFP from culpability in the killings even as the rest of the international community decry the military's role in the murders. Pres. Arroyo must order a stop to the killings and stop protecting the likes of Jovito Palparan," he concluded. #


Post a Comment

<< Home