Wednesday, July 29, 2015

President Aquino’s Sixth And Final SONA: The Highs and Lows

Thank God! President Aquino’s fifth and final SONA is over, his bosses can now have a sigh of relief. For now, we should not be partisan, but rather be unbiased about what we thought of Pnoy's 'farewell speech'.

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I tend to think that his speech is just another lousy rhetoric aimed at making "pa-pogi points." Do bear with me as I dissect his final SONA and genuinely point out the speech' highs and lows.

For a starter, I salute the president for his mastery of the Tagalog language. The President really knows how to play with lines. I am so sure that his bosses did clearly grasps the points he is driving at. I gave Pnoy a passing mark here.

Also, President Aquino got my nod when he supported his 'achievements' by figures and percentages. Those claims got the needed boost to make them appear genuine ones.

He also got my approval when he graciously acknowledged some personalities who in one way or another help his administration. Being grateful is a trademark of a true Pinoy! And at the end of his speech, I salute him for being humble and sincere in acknowledging his deficiencies and apologized to the people.

Now let's deal with the speech lows.

I am disgruntled and disappointed that President Aquino in enumerating the achievements of his administration had repeatedly chastised the previous administration for its sins. From his inaugural up to his last SONA, he intentionally put the former President Arroyo regime in a bad light. That is a foul move. He should have not have done that!

I also find it unnecessary for Pnoy to act as Mar Roxas campaign manager this early. Much better if the President had instead discussed resolving major issues before his tenure ends. The people need to hear his plan about issues that need closures.

And lastly, why is it Aquino didn't castigated Transportation Secretary Joseph Abaya for the extremely bad state of the MRT, putting the blame on the private corporation maintaining it. “Di po ba maski sinong kumpanya, dapat sinisigurong masusulit ang kanilang investment? Pero hinayaan lang nilang lumala nang lumala ang situwasyon hanggang umabot sa puntong ipinasa na sa atin nang ora-orada ang pagsasaayos ng MRT.” (Whatever the company, shouldn’t they be ensuring a return on their investment? But they let the situation get worse and worse…) Why are you complaining to us about how your private partner runs the MRT? You’re the government! The MRT is a public utility! His statement regarding this issue made me really mad! Up to his final speech, "naghugas kamay" si Pnoy!

He should have given his bosses a more comforting statement! One that will appease those disgruntled and irritated everyday train commuters. If this is the case, then the thousands of MRT commuters should endure more "sakit sa katawan" days just to have their regular train rides.

Mister President, kahit man lang sana sa huling SONA nyo, binigyan nyo ng pag-asa ang mga MRT commuters!

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

BOI Report - Refuting Lacierda's Illogical Statements

Browsing the web about the latest about the Mananasapano report, I stumbled upon a post "BOI ‘resorted to speculations’–Malacañang" which I deemed worth digesting its contents.

The post centered on presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda statements after the board of inquiry (BOI) came out with their report.

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Presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said that while the “narration of the facts was exhaustive,” it did not take into account the side of President Benigno Aquino III. “In gathering the facts, the BOI should have allowed the facts to speak for themselves,” Lacierda said in an emailed statement.

In the statement, the secretary said there was a need to “separate the facts from potentially hastily made conclusions and opinions.”

Now that the BOI report came out and (in the report) said that Noynoy was one of those responsible for the Oplan Exodus failed mission, Malacañang is now saying the BOI is resorting to speculations?

President Aquino and his 'pogi boys' in Malacanang are liars! They are now resorting to playing with words just to swindle and fool the masang pinoy. They said they respect the BOI and whatever decision or findings that the BOI will have; but are now singing a different tune and attacking the BOI report which put the blame on PNoy.

The BOI report, concluded that President Benigno Aquino III and other officials involved in the mission violated the chain of command when he allowed suspended PNP chief Alan Purisima to have a role in a bungled counterterrorism mission that cost the lives of 44 police commandos on Jan. 25.

Aquino not under PNP command! “The first and most basic fact is that the [PNP] is a civilian institution, established to replace the Philippine Constabulary-Integrated National Police (PC-INP). As a civilian institution in the executive branch of government, the President, as Chief Executive, exercises full and absolute control and supervision over every official in that branch,” presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said in a statement.

Wow! Where did you get your facts Mr. Edwin Lacierda?

Assuming Pnoy is not part of the PNP command? then how come he was giving orders to the PNP? how come he appoints its top generals and its chief and he can award medals and promotions to its officers and men?

The BOI report was correct in saying that PNoy violated the chain of command. He chose to course his action via a suspended Chief PNP rather than thru the duly authorized OIC PNP Chief Espina. There is no amount of explaning that PNoy, Lacierda, or Coloma can come up with to cover up the mess that PNoy had created.

PNoy should NOT have dealt with suspended PNP Chief Purisima. Why did he not call OIC PNP Chief Espina and discuss Oplan Exodus? He did not talk to Sec Roxas either who has supervision over the PNP.

Lacierda also said that President Aquino could have clarified some points with the BOI had he received an official request from the fact-finding team. But there were none, he said.

"Why did the BOI not ask the President for his side?" Hmm, Indeed a good question to ask the President.

This is strange. Not asking the side of the one who is the butt of all these criticisms.

Did the president tell the BOI not to ask for his side? Ask Valte or Coloma, they know the answer.

Brace yourself Juan dela Cruz for in the coming days, the new Pinocchio in Malacañang will come out with another round of 'explosive' bombs. Lacierda knows the truth but hides it to protect Pnoy sagging political career. He is one of those incompetent spokespersons in Malacañang who are only good in speculations and innuendos. What is not acceptable to them will surely be the subject of their lies and criticisms. What is good to their ears the subject of all praise.

My say: Mr Lacierda and the other Pinocchios in Palace, JUST LIVE with the TRUTH!

All the Filipino people wanted now is for the President as commander-in-chief to assume responsibility for the incident because he played a big role in it.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Senate Hearing on the Mamasapano Clash - Unveiling the Truth

The Senate hearing on the Masasapano failed SAF-PNP operation hugged the limelight in almost all social media forms. Though it's the first session of what could be a long truth-seeking forum; the initial findings has provided the public vital pieces to what we may call the Fallen 44 jigsaw puzzle.

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Personal views, opinions, and speculations entertained every Juan dela Cruz mind, after hearing the testimonies given by relieved SAF Director Getulio Napeñas and suspended PNP Director General Alan Purisima - the two principal personalities. The hearing has just started and it is too early to make conclusions. In due time, Pinocchio will be unmasked!

This writer has his own views too. The heated arguments fired during the opening salvo of the Senate hearing had offered him three truths.

First truth: Violation of chain of command

It is crystal clear that the chain of command rule was totally violated!

Sec. Mar Roxas II, Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin, and PNP officer-in-charge Gen. Leonardo Espina were left out in the cold about the concealed operation. Only President Aquino and few of his 'trusted' men knew of the operation.

What role do suspended PNP chief Purisima played in the operation that meetings were held in his house? Also, meetings occurred in Malacanang without the knowledge of Gen. Leonardo Espina. Napeñas even mentioned in the said hearing that he received orders from the suspended Purisima. In the first place General Purisima should not have had a hand in the planning of the operation. This is a clear evidence that chain of command was violated.

Second Truth: No coordination at all

Our troops is the first to violate the ceasefire agreement with the MILF. There was a need to coordinate with the MILF group since the SAF assault team will enter an MILF controlled area. There was also no coordination with the AFP regarding the operation. Armed Forces chief General Gregorio Catapang Jr. admits that they were informed about the incident several hours later and the reinforcement came late.

The general further stated that the SAF troops were fully extracted by 11:30p.m. because the military did not know the exact location of the forces.

Third truth: Cover up

The first Senate hearing also unveiled the true colors of some senators. Their questions unveiled where they stand - as if some are covering up Aquino's role in the operation. Tsk,tsk,tsk....

Addressing the nation for the second time after the January 25 incident, President Benigno "Noy" Aquino III assumed full responsibility for the failed Mamasapano clash. The president had mishandling of what was otherwise successful operation to capture Marwan. "As President and the Commander-in-chief, the responsibility rests in me for whatever results, be it a success, or failure, or tragedy in our search for long-term security and peace," President Aquino declared.

Pnoy had apologized and it is better for him to attend the Senate hearing to shed light about some of the operation's sensitive details. His bosses clamor for the truth to come out, so Pnoy should give it to them. It is now up for the good senators, not to be stumbling blocks, but a smooth conduit in unveiling the truth. Thus, throw away those 'cover up' and 'whitewash' things.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Justice for the Fallen 44

It's been a week since the fatal morning where 44 elite members of Special Action Forces (SAF) of PNP risked their lives in line of duty. The nation mourns the death of the Fallen 44. We mourn the death of these fallen heroes; No amount of sympathy will ever bring back their lives. We salute the brevity these men have shown.

But people from all walks of live are in a quandary of what really transpired on that day. Let's look at some of the detail: The military operation was known only to a few military officials and the President himself. The mission was aimed at serving a warrant of arrest to a high profile terrorist named Zulkifli Bin Hir aka Marwan and Basit Usman. From all indications, the 300+ SAF troops encountered a huge BIFF/MILF freedom fighters. The BIFF/MILF forces encircled the SAF troops, then a massacre when the policemen surrendered. Despite the setback, the SAF claimed that the operation became successful because they killed Marwan and they cut off his finger to undergo in a DNA test.

Those gallant SAF men died defending the country. Juan dela Cruz is now pondering ... What caused the defeat? Some military and war experts believed that the operation was hastily planned logistics and tactic wise. It seems that it was a 'secret mission'. Some high ranking field commanders where not even briefed about the operation. The troops did not coordinate to the MILF before they enter into their territory. No back up plan was even envisioned. PNP National Director Getulio Napelas who acted as a leader in that operation already took the blame about the incident. But it doesn't enough because there are people higher than him who might order to conduct the operation.

According to OIC PNP Chief Leonardo Espina, the suspended PNP Chief Alan Purisima was the one who gave an order to the SAF and was reporting directly to P-Noy. It means that the president knew about the operation. But ironically Defense Sec. Voltair Gazmin and DILG Sec. Mar Roxas doesn't inform about the operation.

Enough of this finger pointing on whom to blame. The damage had been done. What the Pilipino people want is for the truth to come out ASAP. Since President Aquino has knowledge of the operation from the very onset, he should be brave enough to accept full responsibility of the actions of his men. Let justice be served! Put behind bars the freedom fighters who, did this barbaric act. Put the ongoing peace talk on halt until every culprit behind the killing is all accounted for. The government must now adapt the battle cry "Peace with Justice". Perhaps, the MILF and similar groups will have a change of heart, lay down their arms and pursue to achieve a genuine peace in Mindanao.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Super Typhoon Yolanda - Revisiting its Victims

On Nov. 8, 2013, the Philippines again experienced a calamity of great magnitude. Super typhoon “Yolanda” made landfall and devastated most of Eastern Visayas and Palawan. Deemed by meteorologists around the world as the strongest storm on record with its maximum sustained winds of 315 kph, Yolanda flashed its fury and made its presence felt in about 600 coastal towns and 57 cities in Eastern Visayas.

Survivors told stories of babies being wrenched from their arms by raging waters, never to be seen again; of whole houses getting uprooted and washed into the maelstrom with wailing families inside; of village folk ensconced in temporary shelters being forced to flee again as even evacuation centers located farther inland were also overwhelmed by winds and flood waters.

President Benigno Aquino did what he deemed was right; mobilizing concerned government agencies. NGO's and the international communities joined the move with relief goods and monetary assistance coming along the way. The world comes to the rescue of the hapless victims and survivors. But what is this that I read that the same 'Yolanda' survivors are venting their ire on the President for failing to respond to their needs even after a year.

What really transpired during those 12 agonizing months for the typhoon victims? Let's take for example victims in Tacloban City, Leyte. President Aquino’s skip Tacloban City in the series of commemorative activities marking the first anniversary of Super typhoon 'Yolanda.'Instead he visited Guiuan, Eastern Samar. Why? because he was just avoiding a direct confrontation with the people who might not control their anger against him.

The people of Tacloban, led by Tacloban City Mayor Alfred Romualdez were not expected to roll out the red carpet for the President. He doesn’t like the Romualdezes so he picked friendlier ground and went to Guiuan instead where he would be in the arms of his allies. It’s too bad that our public officials can’t set aside politics even temporarily for a tragedy of immense magnitude like Super Typhoon Yolanda.

In other developments that took 'Yolanda' victims ire is the irregularities concerned government agencies in delivering relief goods to the affected communities. It is inaccurate to say the government didn’t do its part; it also mobilized personnel on many fronts, from soldiers to social workers, to help in the rehabilitation and rebuilding. But the slow, turtle-paced actions Pnoy and his trusted men performed their duties. The master plan for rehabilitation and recovery was signed by the President only last Oct. 29, or nearly a full year after the disaster. Gosh! for months now, thousands of families still live in crumbling tents and bunkhouses! My goodness, this government is run my aging turtles.

The Commission on Audit itself has called out the Department of Social Welfare and Development for the warehouses filled with food packs that went to waste because of improper storage, and for the cash assistance that didn’t reach the survivors. Wow! Mr. President, "huwag kang tulog ng tulog sa pansitan". Perhaps, you don't have the political will to show compassion to those affected by 'Yolanda'. Wake up and come to your senses, Mr. President. If you want to please your "Bosses", go castigates your allies who are sleeping on their jobs. Show that you are a good and trusted captain of a ship you call "Tuwid na Daan". All is not loss, just do you act NOW!


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