That President Gloria Macapagal – Arroyo
should not seek re-election in
2004 national election*
Honorable members of the board of judges,
Ladies and gentlemen:
Once again, we are witnessing a crossroad in our nation’ destiny. On top of various political developments now current in our system, there’s one that seems hanging as a Damoclean Sword or maybe a past time puzzle among political pundits of our time.
Is Her Excellency, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo running in the 2004 national elections?
Ladies and gentlemen, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo SHOULD NOT SEEK REELECTION IN 2004 NATIONAL ELECTION.
Ours is undeniably a unique political history. We have ample breakthroughs in politics that are district from the rest of the world. Some say, it’s our way of life. Or, are we just that – we live and die in politics, indulge so much in it or perceive it largely as means of power than service?
From colonial times, from our independence, until the age of tyranny and the dawn of Dictatorship, from the turbulent 70’s, from the first People Power in EDSA, from the overthrow in EDSA DOS, from the foiled EDSA TRES which trickled down to recent military mutiny in Oakwood; all of these partake in our nation’s political growth which somehow instill national consciousness.
Whether we have transcended boundaries of politics to more tangible terms of social reform and equity remains a tall question worthy of everyone’s concern.
That is why, we are put in the balance as to the President’s real word of seeking presidential seat through an election in 2004 or not. That’s why, we are kept bombarded with multi-faceted speculations in media and various public forums as to the President’s intent in politics come 2004.
But the President stated earlier her firm position not to run in 2004.
Every right thinking Filipino who values word of honor and delicadeza need not really place it as an issue of prime importance. But with the strangeness of our entire political system, and at the rate things are going on around the President’s seat of power, events maybe are ripe refuting the President’s earlier position not to run.
National papers even quoted a LAKAS spokesman providing implications of the President’s SONA as hint of going beyond her current term towards 2004. But that remains to be seen, as the President has stood pat in her orders to stop talking about her political plans. With this alone, we believe and it should really be, that the President will finally bow out in 2004.
President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo should not run in the 2004 presidential elections.
That is her promise to the Filipino people in that fateful Rizal Day. Let it be so. And let it be a legacy in our nation’s colorful political history.
Otherwise, we shall be kept hostage in the deep dilemma whether the President who once failed in a promise would keep a cohesive people and country or steer our course in an atmosphere of trust and unity. The serious repercussions of a broken promise will create ripples in our supposedly calm and halcyon voyage towards progress after 2004.
This will beget so much divisiveness and social unrest.
At stake is the staging of a better economy and stature from the rest of the world.
While the President’s urgent concerns have significant relations in addressing social reforms, breach in political statements have to be shun to help unburden an already ailing society.
We commend the President’s firm stand to be at war: “At war against corruption, at war against disease, at war against drug, the greatest menace facing our country today.” And on the issues lodged against her administration by the young officers in Oakwood, the President judging from the genuine reasons of their uprising; had constituted an independent commission to “investigate the roots of the mutiny and the provocation that inspired it.”
Good. But a stable government which is not born out of conflict and so much power play could be better off as staging point of these reforms. Stability is the key step to spur economic progress and bind our people.
Letting the President break her promise will definitely meet its toll of economic and social disaster after 2004. It will be graver should she wins the seat. We had already met EDSA TRES. We had already put our nation in a brink of chaos in the latest coup attempt. Let us give our people a fresh political reality after 2004. Enough of adding another pain in an already wounded nation.
We intend to build a strong republic. Better said than done when our leaders unceasingly refuse to learn from realities around. When the self superimpose general welfare and politics is reduced as mere reason for self aggrandizement, there could be no hope to achieve a stronger republic for our children.
We are better off strange, not strong when we pursue political moves that would jeopardize our future and socio-political stability.
Friends, let us heed President Gloria Macapagal – Arroyo’s word of not intending to seek the Presidential seat in 2004. It is her own and extreme sense of self and political sacrifice as she publicly declared such. Let no one of us induce a bleak political persuasion that would erode people’s trust and confidence over the President’s statement.
President Gloria Macapagal – Arroyo should not run in 2004 presidential elections.
We believe in brilliant potentials of Pinoys. No one holds an exclusive and messianic right over this country’s march to the future. We should encourage a dynamic political change and break traditions of patronage and perpetuation.
The time for us now suits the temperament of stirring national re-awaking and self- contemplation on citizenship. The deepening political rifts, the backsliding economy, the growing phenomenon of poverty and corruption, the breakdown of morality, a mediocre bureaucracy – - all these are symptoms of our social malaise that have been passed on from one generation to another.
Our social conscience requires that we preclude motives of personal, political gains.
It’s time we share a collective idea of regulating selfish political interest. The task at hand is of the essence. Too much politics will degenerate our genuine development efforts. Less of it will do.
Think of a number of street children walking on our busy districts. Think of a number of our farmers who still wallow in so much deprivation and neglect from basic services. Think of a number of professionals reduced to mere household helps abroad for want of opportunities at home. Think of a number of urban poor still squatting in the metropolis. Think of how strange our government affairs and politics are run. Think of us now. Where are we in our quest for better life?
Don’t blame the government. Don’t blame the President. Don’t blame the church, either. Don’t blame the terrorists. We are what we are. Our collective decision as a people makes up for what we are now.
We should reduce our social miseries in our concerted resolve to do it. Together, we can make or unmake our own destiny. This is a critical opportunity called upon us to reflect on.
The President has remained in her promise not to run. It is good, as she believes it is so in the interest of national welfare. So let it be, if we would see a strong republic today and beyond our times!
*CESAR V. SARMIENTO’S ORATORICAL CUP
The Third Staging
November 14, 2003, 2:00 p.m.
Capitol Dome, Provincial capitol