Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Gonzalez should be censured and suspended for bribing baranggay officials; he should inhibit himself from all cases involving the progressive lawmaker

Tuesday , April 24, 2007

Gonzalez should be censured and suspended for bribing baranggay officials; he should inhibit himself from all cases involving the progressive lawmakers

Anakpawis Representative and political detainee Crispin Beltran today reacted to reports that Justice secretary Raul Gonzalez is allegedly bribing baranggay officials in Iloilo to support and campaign for Team Unity. He said that Gonzalez must be censured and charged for influencing and bribing local officials.

"Gonzalez may be using money out of his own pocket, but bribery is bribery, and vote buying is vote buying. If all his uncouth declarations and undiplomatic conduct against visiting foreign dignitaries have been tolerated by the Macapagal-Arroyo government, this latest admission that he's actually paying off baranggay officials to support Team Unity cannot be dismissed. This goes way beyond subjective offense, this is a criminal act and Gonzalez should at least be suspended from office for this," he said.

The activist lawmaker said that Gonzalez is using his position and influence to peddle Malacanang's campaign not only to suppress civil liberties and democratic rights in the country, but to ensure that the administration will secure an ill-gotten victory in the May14 polls. He said that Gonzalez is Malacanang's official 'loose cannon' but because the Macapagal-Arroyo government benefits from Gonzalez' various shenanigans, it gives Gonzalez free reign.

In the meantime, Beltran also slammed Gonzalez anew for the latter's charge that the temporary release through bail of senatorial candidate Gringo Honasan should not happen again in his (Beltran's) case. Beltran said that he will still file a motion for bail 'and Gonzalez has no right to deny me of that right. The government has no case against me, at least none will stand up in a genuinely objective legal arena."

"Gonzalez has really made it personal. He must see himself as some kind of twisted crusader protecting the Macapagal-Arroyo administration and preserving it in all it's corrupt and illegitimate glory. Sec. Gonzalez is one of the biggest reasons why no genuine progress can be achieved in the government's supposed campaign to fight human rights violations and attacks against civil liberties and democratic rights. He is a regular campaigner for political repression."

"Sec. Gonzalez has long before abandoned all objectivity and sense of fair play when it comes to dealing with legitimate critics of the Macapagal-Arroyo presidency. He is already twisting and manipulating the law and using false and fabricated charges, evidence and testimonies to pin the progressive lawmakers including myself. I have been detained for 14 months and denied my rights as an elected lawmaker and a civilian. Gonzalez has thrown the principle 'innocent until proven guilty' down the toilet and replaced it with 'guilty unless you can prove yourself innocent and if you can go through a maze of fabricated charges.'"

Finally, Beltran said that Sec. Gonzalez should be made to inhibit himself when it comes to the cases involving the progressive lawmakers of Anakpawis, Bayan Muna and Gabriela Women's Party (GWP). "He is no longer in his right thinking mind when it comes to us and our party-lists. He has been rendered fully incapable of fair and objective thinking, and his legal expertise and authority has been severely compromised in his desperation to protect the Arroyo administration."#


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