A second petition has been filed before the Supreme Court by allies of former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo to invalidate and deem as unconstitutional the creation of the Truth Commission made possible by current President Benigno Aquino III’s Executive Order No. 1.
Among other things, Congressmen Edcel Lagman, Rodolfo Albano Jr., Simeon Datumanong and Orlando Fua Jr. argued that the creation of the Truth Commission:
… violated the equal protection clause as it selectively targets for investigation and prosecution officials and personnel of the previous administration as if corruption is their peculiar species even as it excludes those of the other administrations, past and present, who may be indictable;
… and, is an exercise in futility, an adventure in partisan hostility, a launching pad for trial/conviction by publicity and a mere populist propaganda to mistakenly impress the people that widespread poverty will altogether vanish if corruption is eliminated without even addressing the other major causes of poverty.
Here is my take on their reasons:
- Selective targeting? Well, if most cases that the Truth Commission would investigate “allegedly” happened during the Arroyo administration, then why blame them? Besides, it’s about time Mrs. Arroyo and the members of her administration state their case in court under oath, and it’s really time that we know every detail of it. This country can’t move on without breaking free from the shackles of the past.
- If the Truth Commission won’t do it, who would? So, we’ll just forgive and forget? We’ll let those at fault move on with their fancy lives, and the poor continue struggling for their survival?
- Yup, there’s the Supreme Court and other courts, but the Truth Commission would serve as the People’s Court. We’ll be able to hear both plaintiff and defendant. Besides, we’ll not be the ones laying down the judgment; the Commission would. However, the Commission’s decisions, if not justified properly, may elicit not-so-good reactions from the populace.
- Poverty will definitely vanish if graft and corruption is eliminated! Of course, it has been the nation’s disease — appropriately called the Big C — for a very, very long time. It’s as if we inherited the shenanigans of the Spaniards who conquered us, the Spaniards our heroes valiantly fought for independence.
- I believe it’s the one major cause of poverty that, if eliminated, will lead to the elimination of the other causes of poverty. Its eradication will spur a change of national and individual Filipino attitude. Foreign investors will be attracted again to have businesses in the country, thus creating jobs and income. Local businessmen will not be afraid to transact with the government, as well as its customers. We’ll have that aura of trust, equality, unity and nationalism, factors that are greatly needed by this nation to be great again.
Pres. Aquino III appointed Vivian Sarabia, his – and every other President since Quezon’s – personal optometrist as a member of the Professional Regulations Commission (PRC)’s Optometry Board.