Moment of Truth
by Ronald Roy
ALMOST exactly a year ago, I wrote a thesis on “judicial activism” in two parts. The first was titled Judicial Activism, dated Nov. 27, 2012, which underscored: “Indeed, unless something drastic is done, a denial of plaintiffs, the People of the Philippines (in the Ampatuan case) may unduly result (in the breach of) xxx the constitutional guarantee of a speedy delivery of justice—alas, a situation showing an unpardonable dearth of courage and innovation on the part of all officially connected with the operations within the criminal justice system (at the core of which is the Supreme Court.)”
Then came a month later Judicial Activism 2, dated Dec. 4, 2012, stressing that: “It is extremely gratifying to note that 6 out of 7 of this column’s readers favor my advocacy of judicial activism as an imperative answer to two legal enigmas, namely, one, in particular to quicken the pace of criminal trial of heinous crimes xxx and two, in general how to beat back the flames (of an incorrigibly corrupt pork barrel system) now rapidly engulfing the (executive and legislative departments).”
In connection with the foregoing, let me set aside P-Noy’s much-publicized management failures in Nur Misuari’s siege of Zamboanga and Super typhoon Yolanda’s massive destruction of lives and properties in Eastern Samar, Leyte and other parts of the Visayas, and instead focus on his presidential mien and mindset in the aftermath of the high court’s lopsided 14-0-1 thumbing down of PDAF as unconstitutional.
Well, he has managed to appear calm and cool as a cucumber in the face of the court’s subtle declaration that his patronage politics was over; but he has not, has he? Surely, not in the face of his revelation before media that he needs more money from Congress for the restoration of normalcy in calamity-ravaged Central Luzon. He must be fidgety these days, wondering how the solons can “come across”, given the Supreme Court’s radical shift to activism and tight watch on them, and given that not only their constituencies but the entire citizenry as well are closely keeping an eye on them.
How then can P-Noy, his Cabinet, the DBM in particular, and Congress perform their mandated roles without the needed funds? It’s obvious they do not deserve our sympathy because they have no one but themselves to blame. They had more than three years to prepare, and when the Zamboanga war, the 7.2 Bohol earthquake and “Yolanda” struck, they were caught flat-footed! And now, the high court is lowering the boom on the unconstitutional features of the Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP)! Ayayay!!
Just think: on three previous occasions, the PDAF (then termed CDF for countryside development fund) was ruled constitutional, but only recently got booted out, thanks to the court’s new-found jugular activism! I really do not care if the nine so-called pro-GMA associate justices “crossed the line” just to get back at P-Noy. The fact is they’ve pushed him ( and his minions) up the wall for some hard reflection: “This is it, the moment of truth has come. DAP, an unauthorized invention by me Butch Abad and other boot-lickers, will surely be declared unconstitutional. There’s no way to escape. Should I now ‘do a Nixon’ with my dignity intact?”
However, this form of honorable exit is wishful thinking. P-Noy will never resign, much less apologize to his bosses, because he reckons it is he who is their boss — his imagined lofty status as an oligarch who “owns and controls” the country. No, he does not steal because hacienda Luisita alone makes him in his mind an enormously wealthy person.
Of course this is twisted thinking by him but, oh well, yes, I think it is if all this talk about his confinement abroad (when he was a kid) for a mental disorder is true. Honestly, I mean no derision and, if the rumor is true, I fervently pray he gets well…unless it’s too late…in which case we’re inextricably stuck in something like a quicksand beneath which lurks a snoring python!!
I take back my previous description of the Supreme Court as the weakest among the three supposedly co-equal and coordinate branches of government, it wielding merely the so-called “power ” of the pen, as against the mighty sword of the Office of the President and Congress’ awesome power of the purse. I was wrong. If at all, it is the Judiciary that is the mightiest among the three branches, since it is the final arbiter over questions of law.
Hence, It was but proper for the high court to put its foot down on what it has identified as a wantonly abusive behavior among executive and legislative officials within the pork barrel system. Thus, in the final analysis, it is the Supreme Court, not another agency or body in government, that is empowered to sustain a healthy democratic balance among the three branches within a structure operating under a Rule of Law.
With fingers crossed, we can now predict the rolling of executive and legislative heads with the high court’s pronouncement that DAP, otherwise known as presidential pork, is likewise unconstitutional. It may then be proclaimed that the high tribunal has proudly hurdled its moment of truth.
- This Day in Liberal Judicial Activism-December 3 (ivoter.com)
- Court Restores India’s Ban on Gay Sex (nytimes.com)
- This Day in Liberal Judicial Activism-November 9 (ivoter.com)
- Scientology Officially a Religion, According to U.K. Supreme Court (world.time.com)
- This Day in Liberal Judicial Activism-November 4 (ivoter.com)
- Indian Supreme Court Bans Gay Sex: What Now? (thoughtcatalog.com)
- We Dissent: Siddharth Narrain (kafila.org)
- Court Restores India’s Ban on Gay Sex – New York Times (nytimes.com)
- India Supreme Court reinstates gay sex ban (jurist.org)
- The Court System and Subversion of Democracy (themoderatevoice.com)
Anak ng Dalampasigan
by: Ronald Roy
NO, dear Reader, there is absolutely no truth to the rumor that the festering decades-old Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) problem is virtually terminated. Do not believe the wild yarn that the Palace and the MNLF will soon officially announce details of a forthcoming exchange of nuptial vows between Pres. Benigno S. Aquino lll and the renegade MNLF founder and chairman, Nur Misuari.
I do not know who started the scuttlebutt, but if we are to believe a usually reliable Palace insider, the President’s protracted stay in war-torn Zamboanga is not an amorous rendezvous with Misuari, but an imperative to end the raging conflict in his capacity as the country’s President and Commander-in-Chief. “The buck stops where I stand, and I assume total responsibility”, he declared before the nation.
On the other hand, let’s take a look at the mustachioed Nur Misuari (Misua, for short), who was born in a Sulu beach and grew up in that beach — which explains why he reportedly carries the swashbuckling nom de guerre “Anak ng dalampasigan” ( ala “Anak ni Palaris” and “The son of Zorro”). #OpinYon #opinion #Zambo
read cont | http://bit.ly/15Iedrj
- After raid, PH eyes new charges vs Misuari (rappler.com)
- Probe shows MNLF rebels started sneaking arms into Zamboanga in January (newsinfo.inquirer.net)
- Security exec: No intel failure on MNLF; gov’t just underestimated facts (newsinfo.inquirer.net)
- Zambo crisis: The fog of war (rappler.com)
- Nur dares govt to arrest him, file rebellion charges (manilastandardtoday.com)
- Habier Malik: Trapped in the city he seized (rappler.com)
- Zambo (1rgcruz.wordpress.com)
- PNoy leaves Zambo; says military action vs MNLF continues (mindanews.com)
- What Went Before: Nur Misuari-led attacks on Zamboanga City (newsinfo.inquirer.net)
- Evidence to link Misuari to siege found – police (manilastandardtoday.com)
By Miguel Raymundo
PRESIDENT Aquino’s choice to stay in the Zamboanga war zone and away from Malacañang is taking a toll on his Presidency.
With much of Zamboanga’s commercial and business facilities shut down because of continued fighting between government forces and Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) rebels, the President is unable to attend to other issues of import that require his immediate attention.
Away from the public eye since Sept. 14 when he left the Palace for Zamboanga City, many are wondering what the President is doing there and who’s running the government’s affairs while he is away.
Is the President still in control? Has he gone AWOL to escape public censure over the P10-billion pork barrel scandal? Is he just sitting around playing his video games—content to sit in the sidelines while the lives and livelihood of the people of Zamboanga lie in the balance?
And where on earth is PNoy exactly? #OpinYon#CoverStory #Pnoy #AWOL
read cont | http://bit.ly/15srVOR
- Schools reopen in Zamboanga (channelnewsasia.com)
- Classes resume in 149 schools in Zamboanga City (newsinfo.inquirer.net)
- PNoy: Zambo standoff ‘getting closer to an end’ (mindanews.com)
- Financing Misuari (opinion.inquirer.net)
- Truce talks fail (manilastandardtoday.com)
- Aquino in Zamboanga for 5 days: No newspapers to read, no stand on key issues (newsinfo.inquirer.net)
- P3.89B to rebuild Zamboanga City, says Aquino (rappler.com)
- President on top of things from Zamboanga – Coloma (newsinfo.inquirer.net)
- Zamboanga City: The Death of Army 2nd Lt. Meneses (5secondsofsummerfacts.wordpress.com)
- Malacañang condemns Zamboanga City attack (rappler.com)
By Herman Tiu-Laurel
IN AUGUST of 2012 at the height of peace talks between the GRP (Government of the Republic of the Philippines) and the MILF (Moro Islamic Liberation Front), the two negotiating parties belittled the possibility that the forces of Nur Misuari and the MNLF (Moro National Liberation Front) and Amerail Umbra Kato’s BIFF (Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters) could derail the talks.
The convulsions the past week in Mindanao shows the folly of the government and MILF’s presumptuous disregard for the other stakeholders in Mindanao’s future. Then chief GRP negotiator and now Supreme Court Justice Marvic Leonen said, “As far as Nur forces, it is nothing we are too bothered about.”
On August 12, 2013 MNLF founding Chairman Nur Misuari declared the establishment of the United Federated States of Bangsamoro Republik in in his Sulu stronghold, envisioning a territory consisting of Mindanao, Basilan, Sulu, Tawi-Tawi, Palawan, and Sabah. This declaration came amidst the final stages of peace negotiations between the GRP and MILF to set up the Bangsamoro Political Entity that will replace the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) that became part of the 1987 Philippine Constitution and created by law through Republic Act No. 6734 known as the ARMM Organic Act.
continuation | http://bit.ly/1a2XwES
- Is the Moro Problem really over? Part II of Two Series (mussol22.wordpress.com)
- Misuari still in Sulu, says ARMM gov (rappler.com)
- Misuari, myths and the MNLF (rappler.com)
- Philippines Struggles With Muslim Rebels (ipsnews.net)
- Habier Malik: Trapped in the city he seized (rappler.com)
- Nightfall comes to Moro armed separatism (opinion.inquirer.net)
- OIC steps in; Misuari loses Kiram (manilastandardtoday.com)
- UPDATE: 200 civilians held hostage in Zamboanga City standoff; 6 killed, 24 wounded (mindanews.com)
- Betraying the Moro cause (dinmerican.wordpress.com)
- A BOHOLANO’S VIEW: Nur Misuari’s Challenge to the Bangsamoro Peace Process (mindanews.com)
Indonesia Ambassador to the Philippines Yohanes Kristiarto Soeryo Legowo: A MAN AHEAD OF HIS TIME
DIPLOMATS are—usually—strict about time. When they don’t arrive in time for their appointments, they come early.
This is literally the case of Yohanes Kristiarto Soeryo Legowo, Indonesia’s Ambassador to the Philippines. Born on the 27th of December in 1962, about a week earlier than his mother’s due date, you could say that it is in his providence to become an ambassador.
Known as Kris to fellow diplomats, friends and associates—his arrival to the family came as a big relief (hence the name Legowo—meaning “big relief” in Javanese). His mother fainted and fell while in church two days before he was born and the accident required stitches on her neck and triggered the contractions.
The youngest in a brood of 10, Legowo became the hands-down favorite in the family.
“I could not deny that everybody was always trying to spoil me.… But doesn’t make me a spoiled child,” Legowo said in a magazine interview last year. But while he has had his share of being pinched in the ear for being naughty, he admitted that he did not really enjoy the overprotectiveness of his parents, brothers and sisters. “But in the end, I put it in a very positive perspective. They did it because they love me,” he said.
His father, Soeryo, was a teacher who imparted to them the value of education. So despite the bouts of teenage rebellion and other misbehaviors—Legowo grew up a decent young man.
“All the values of life I learned it from the family. My father taught us how to pursue dream,” Kris said. “But he always emphasized also that the way we pursue our dream is also important…being Christian, process is very important.” #OpinYon#Indonesia #Foreign
cont | http://bit.ly/17IqauD
- MNLF seeks int’l mediation on 3rd day of standoff (newsinfo.inquirer.net)
- PH seeks Indonesia’s help in Zamboanga conflict (globalnation.inquirer.net)
- Land for rice plan (fijitimes.com)
- Knowledge Indonesia Excursions (travelingtwoindonesia.wordpress.com)
- Indonesia, South Korea Celebrate 40 Years (thejakartaglobe.com)
- A language that built a nation (thehindu.com)
- Peace talks to go on as Indonesia, US air support (manilastandardtoday.com)
- First in Asia: Philippine bananas to be sold in US (globalnation.inquirer.net)
- Indonesia from two perspectives (matadornetwork.com)