Driving back to square 1 PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 03 August 2016 12:01

Sound Snipes

BY Jimmy Cabato

Some tough luck struck again, whew! Hasty fingers may have mistakenly punched a key or two on the board, peeessshhuw, researched news items together with a half-page new writeup, gone to kingdom come. It’s back to writing again by memory.

Despite being ridiculed, such as being branded by communist leader Jose Ma. Sison, as a “bully”, thinking he had control over the communist rebels, President Rodrigo Duterte will still continue talking peace with them, snidely admitting he may have erred in declaring a unilateral ceasefire.

In view thereof, he drew a hurting flak from arch critic, Sen. Leila de Lima, who twitted, the government might have been rash in making the decision to issue a one-way declaration, and it should not have expected for the communist-led National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) to reciprocate the gesture.

She contended, the unilateral act was as impulsive as its lifting, driving us back to square one, and with bruised egos to boot, instead of the goodwill that prevailed at the start.

* * * *

The hullabaloos over the very recent elections continue to flood the air. So, writes Atty. Dodo Dulay. He says, the Commission on Elections (Comelec) has a lot to explain and must not remain silent on the matter in hopes the issues will dissipate into thin air. It will not.

The extensive alteration of the Smartmatic Automated programs and servers will for always rock the system and must not also be left hanging under the Duterte dispensation. If the Smartmatic firm, supplier of those “killer” machines cannot change its system in to a fool-proof voting and counting process, the best thing to do is revert to manual voting and counting.

And this is where the zealousness of Pres. Duterte on transparency and honesty in government will be put to test.

In  chabacano, “Let us to see.”

* * * *

Pres. Duterte has expressed time and again, he believes that now is the best time to hold bilateral talks with China since an international arbitral tribunal has issued its ruling on a case filed by the Philippines against Beijing.

It so happens, both the Philippines and China agree on the idea. And we guess, China appears even more anxious than the Philippines in that it had issued an approval statement on ex-Pres. Fidel Ramos’ designation and participation in the talks.

As a matter of truth, China has even issued a request for the US to help broker the meeting.

If as believed, “now is the best time to hold bilateral talks”, question remains, cuando cuando cuando?

* * * *

Saw this item written by Rigoberto Tiglao on my file and sees it to be interesting, so thought of lifting a few lines here and there.

It starts, outgoing President Benigno S. Aquino 3rd should be very worried that President-elect Rodrigo Duterte, according to his (incoming) Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre 2nd, had ordered him “to “investigate the Disbursement Acceleration Program (illegal funds releases) and look into the liabilities of officials responsible for it.”

Aguirre even noted: “He told me that charges should be filed no matter who gets hurt. There should be no selective justice.”

Well, only two people were responsible for the DAP: Aquino and his Budget Secretary Florencio Abad, Jr. In fact very few in government, even in the budget department, had been aware of it until Senator Jinggoy Estrada in 2013 exposed it, claiming that DAP funds were used to bribe senators to vote Chief Justice Renato Corona guilty in his impeachment trial. According to Estrada, senators voting to remove Corona from office were given P100 million for their “projects,” which, he would later on be told, came from the DAP.

He could be trembling by now.

* * * *

Hey, can’t hardly believe this bit of detail, unheard of in previous days, also disclosed in the above Tigalo writeup. Starting off early in his presidency, now citizen BS Aquino 3rd, was perhaps even more popular than Duterte. Reason: he got 42 percent of the votes, compared with the Davao mayor’s 39 percent.

While that’s what the records show, there must be a reason for that, though.

Ponder on this, and see if WS is correct. Aquino just may have had lightweights for opponents, and Digong’s were heavyweights.

Pitted against Aquino then truly bore big names, the likes of the moneyed Manny Villar and   Ex-Pres. Joseph Estrada. But Villar’s image was badly damaged by attacks of alleged usage of huge public funds to benefit his own estates and business interests. And Estrada, at that time was still reeling from a recent imprisonment brought about the gambling lord and tobacco excise tax controversies.

Whereas, Duterte faced Mar Roxas, who had the entire government machinery and coffers on top of the Araneta fortune within easy reach. And while Jojo Binay was battered bad by supposed plunder via the Makati buildings, he also had fortunes at his disposal. Of course, an early favorite for the presidency of years ago, Miriam Santiago still had some left in her arsenal.

That, WS guesses, did the trick for Aquino.

True or false, you decide.