SANLAKAS - BMP - PLM
Joint Press Release
20 August 2014
Gina Flores 0922-8761086
Sanlakas Media Liaison
Groups Vow to Fight Aquino’s bid for Cha-Cha and Term Extension to Secure Himself and his Pork Barrel Beyond 2016
CITING President Noynoy Aquino’s innuendoes towards Cha-Cha and term extension, and his declaration of intent to clip the powers of the judiciary after the Supreme Court declared his Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP) unconstitutional, progressive groups say this clearly reveals Aquino’s dictatorial tendencies.
In a press conference held in Quezon City, the groups Sanlakas, Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino (BMP), Partido Lakas ng Masa (PLM) and allied peoples organizations vowed to take to the streets and mobilize to fight President Noynoy Aquino schemes to change the Charter in order to extend his term in office to secure himself in the face of recent Disbursement Acceleration program (DAP).controversy.
“If a sitting President flouts the Constitutional tenets on checks and balance by flagrantly attacking the judiciary, flaunts his control over the legislative branch, and pits this against the judiciary as well, does this not endanger the very delicate balance of power of existing constitutional democracy?” argued Atty. Aaron Pedrosa, national Secretary-General of Sanlakas.
Pedrosa said that Aquino’s recent moves against the judiciary, and calls for cha-cha and term extension reminds us of how President Ferdinand Marcos, who in 1972 was on his last year of his Constitutionally-mandated second term made similar innuendoes for term extension during the Constitutional Convention to amend the 1935 Constitution. “We all know what happened in September of 1972, Marcos usurped absolute power when he declared martial law and ruled as a dictator for the next 13 years”.
For his part, Leody de Guzman of BMP asserted that, “the bottom line of recent political tumult since parts of the DAP were declared unconstitutional by the SC is Aquino’s intent to protect himself and his partymates from the consequence of such a resolution, and to secure himself and his party of continued control over power beyond 2016.”
The groups also decried the refusal of Congress to recognize an impeachment complaint they filed earlier against President Aquino on the grounds of “culpable violation of the constitution” and “betrayal of trust”.
Sonny Melencio of Partido Lakas ng Masa said, “Despite the general belief that impeachment in our political system is a numbers game, and that all impeachment complaints that are now filed and being deliberated in the House Committee on Justice are expected to be thrown out because of Noynoy’s and the ruling party coalition’s control over the very large majority of the House of Representative, it is still important and significant that we and all the groups who have done so, take a stand and file for impeachment of President Aquino, in the effort to expose the hypocrisy of this administration’s campaign against corruption, and the nature of their TRAPO rule.”
Melencio added, “the fact that we have a House of Representative that will do the behest of the Executive in order to preserve the pork barrel system and to protect their hold on power merely reveals the reality that what we have is a Congress of TRAPOs and elite politicians, not a Congress truly representative of the people, the large majority that is the toiling masses.”
The groups called on the public “not to rely and put their lives and welfare in the hands of the Congress of TRAPOs, but to secure the people’s welfare and interest by setting up a People’s Congress that is representative of the large majority, that is of the toiling masses.”
At their press conference, the groups announced that on August 25, they will launch a nationally-coordinated protest actions in major urban centers such as Metro Manila, Laguna, Cavite, Cebu City, Bacolod City, and Tacloban City in the Visayas, Davao and Ozamis City in Mindanao.
In Metro Manila, they will march to Mendiola in the morning to raise their call, and in the afternoon they will join with various forces gathering in Luneta against the Pork Barrel System.