I am not really a big fan of political rallies but I went to some major ones when I felt that the need was pressing.  If I were already old enough to carry a placard in 1986, I would almost certainly be in the first EDSA crowd calling for Marcos to leave Malacañang. The last mass protest I’ve been to was when people clamored for Erap’s resignation in 2001. I was among the thousands gathered in front of the EDSA shrine when the military top brass lead by then AFP Chief of Staff Gen. Angelo Reyes defected to the side of the people calling for reform.

Tomorrow, a big rally against charter change or Cha-cha will be held in Metro Manila and in other parts of the country as well. If I were in the Philippines, I would probably join this one too. But sigh! I am trapped here in a foreign land (until my flight back home next week Yipeeeeee!), so I resort to blogging instead, to voice out. Thank you wordpress!

I believe the renewed calls for Cha-cha especially the proposal to extend the terms of all incumbents including the president is highly deceptive and ill-timed! Some politicians are using the global economic slump as an excuse for amending the constitution as if term-extension is the silver bullet versus this problem. On the contrary, shouldn’t they be blamed for not doing enough to buffer the struggling economy against further decline? In other countries, particularly in the United States where it all started, the incumbent leaders are being blamed for the financial crunch. I doubt that our current set of Philippine leaders is guiltless with respect to the harm that this crisis is bringing to our country! This gives us more reason to oppose any move that will cancel or postpone the general elections in 2010. We need fresh leadership. More importantly, we need a new president!

Speaking of president, I do not understand how and why pro-Cha-cha lawmakers think they could trick the Filipino people into believing that we need to extend President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo’s term given her tarnished resume. To illustrate: 1) PGMA won (many say she cheated Fernando Poe Jr.) with the narrowest of margins in the 2004 Presidential race. 2) PGMA’s term has been marred with controversy after controversy; from the “Hello Garci” scandal to the fertilizer fund scam to the ZTE-NBN deal. 3) PGMA has had four impeachment complaints to date. 4) PGMA’s cabinet, 10 of them, resigned en mass in 2005. Well, that tells a lot about her doesn’t it? 5) PGMA’s approval rating has been in the negative since 2005 making her the most unpopular president since Ferdinand Marcos in 1986. Translated, most Filipinos do not trust her anymore nowadays!

Seven plus two more years (until her presidency expires in 2010) under the Arroyo administration is enough for me. Adding a couple of years to that will be too much and will create further public outcry! I voted for PGMA in 2004 thinking that she is the “lesser evil” (I didn’t want FPJ to win).  However, if by some manipulative political design, legislators are able to push for Cha-cha and term extension, there will be no doubt in my mind that she is one of the “most evil” leaders our country has ever had.

If she would put an end to Cha-cha version 2008, PGMA should be allowed to finish her remaining years as president. I have not been too keen about impeachment claims filed against her because I think the most probable next-in-line replacements would just be the same banana. Then what? Impeach her successor as well? Impeachment proceedings just create political noise, which cause more harm than good to the country. It impedes growth, which in fairness to PGMA has been observed during her tenure, regardless of whether she was directly responsible for it or not. In the current context, it is a waste of time and resources. However, I believe that Cha-cha, if shoved down Filipino throats will galvanize mass action and bring the impeachment fight to the streets.

Don’t get me wrong. I am also pro-Cha-cha. I see the merits of revising the Constitution. I am pro-federalism, in fact. However, now is not the proper time for Charter change. We should wait until after the elections of 2010. Let us be vigilant and help ensure that the elections in that year will be clean and credible so as to avoid any legitimacy questions like that which hounded PGMA ever since she became head of state.



5 Responses to “NO TO CHA-CHA!!!”

  1. 1 Biyernes 12 Disyembre 2008 bandang 1:51 hapon

    nakakapagod talagang mag cha-cha!
    Joe: Kapagod talaga…

  2. 2 pinoyonlinenovels Biyernes 12 Disyembre 2008 bandang 9:20 hapon

    maganda sana ang hangarin ng cha-cha kaso kung GMA ang magpapatupad, no way!!!
    Joe: No way talaga kung si GMA! Salamat sa pagbisita Juan Carlos.

  3. 3 nold Sabado 13 Disyembre 2008 bandang 2:56 umaga

    Our politicos has gone insane. Philippines has the right government structure, however, it continues to present problems because there’s too much politicking, there’s no real intention of building the nation puro personal na interes lang ang mga lider nacional, there seems to be a lack of effort for meeting the challenge of development. We had our chances, after Marcos and Erap but we continue to stray away from the right course, we continue to have ill governance.

    Sino ba may problema, tao o gobyerno?


    Good post Joe, gusto ko yun mga niebe na disenyo! merry christmas sa inyo – regards sa Familia!
    Joe: Palagay ko parehong may problema ang tao at gobyerno…pero kailangan mauna muna magtino ang gobyerno para magtino rin ang mga tao.

    Merry xmas din sa yo Nold! Uuwi ka ba ng Pilipinas?

  4. 4 duskfading Linggo 14 Disyembre 2008 bandang 4:39 hapon

    Boogie na lang. Wag na chacha.

    Talaga bang may snow itong blogsite mo?
    Sige mag-boogie tayo. 🙂

    Oo talagang may snow. Imported pa yan galing tate hehe.

  5. 5 nold Martes 16 Disyembre 2008 bandang 3:57 umaga

    hi joe, next year na ko uwi – mahal ng round trip ticket (imagine mo na lang sa isang familia kung magkano suma tutal huhuhu!), sana man lang may konteng discuento galing gobyerno pasko naman di ba (subsidize or at least temporarily cut down on the taxes since OFW’s been the foundation of our reserves for decades), talagang gatasan lumalabas mga OFW, mapapakamot ka na lang ng ulo, pero siempre negosyo iyan ng mga privado na compana – gobyerno dapat ang may initiativo.
    Joe: Maganda nga sana kung may ganyang proyekto ang gobyerno imbes na kung ano ano pang fees ang hinihingi sa mga OFWs. Kung tutuusin mo higit pa sa sapat ang pakinabang ng gobyerno sa limpak limpak na remittances ng mga OFWs pero di pa makuntento. Kailangan pang magimbento ng mga bayarin na hindi naman dapat. Halimbawa, ang OEC—money-making scheme lang ito e.

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...sapagkat ang gobyerno natin ay may "cash cow mentality" pagdating sa mga Overseas Filipino Workers.

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