Poor or Pork Barrel System?-A A +A
Questions that Matter
Monday, August 26, 2013
THE Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) is just a part of the whole big pig that the Philippine government is feeding with the peoples’ money. This pig grows very big every year that when time comes for its slaughtering, most, if not all of the Philippine politicians are willing to partake of the pork. Actually, what the President had abolished or cut-down is simply the feet of the pig but the pork belly and the choice cuts are still with them. He did not talk about this. He only talked about the wastes of the slaughtered pig.
The political system of the Philippines is a hybrid mutant. It is a Frankenstein Monster. According to one political analyst, the Philippines is the best political laboratory in the world in terms of politics, governance and economics. Nobody could explain or enumerate the principles from which governance is based upon. No one could really discuss thoroughly the dynamics of the Philippine system. Many authors tried to explain the country’s social dynamics but failed to capture the essence. This is the reason why until this very day, we have not perfected the system.
For the past days, many sectors have been calling for the abolition of the “pork.” It even prompted President Benigno Aquino III to come out on national television to tell the people that he is abolishing the pork barrel and dramatizing it with the presence of Drilon and Belmonte. Adding insult to injury, he requested these two together with Secretary Abad to develop mechanisms to put transparency to the use of the pork and Secretary De Lima to prosecute those who had abused the pork. Does the Filipino nation believe this? I think some really do. But a number of people know that this is simply theatrical and comical.
The citizens should call for the prosecution of all starting with the presidents who have abused their discretionary funds, the appointed officials and cabinet members who have made personal use of the peoples’ money, the senators and congressmen who really abused the fund and their contractors. These people should be tried and prosecuted when found guilty of misuse and misappropriation of funds.
The people ought to know where their money had been used. Those concerned should and must tell the people of their use of peoples’ money. The people should be told. However, who are these people? Is it only the few who have paid much to government for their taxes? Or are these the ordinary people in the street who are not really affected whether the President abolishes the pork or not. I guess the people that need the information are only those in the first group. The second group no longer would like to know for they believe that whoever sits there will be eaten by corruption. Look at the very people who are shouting against corruption are now the ones swimming in the same pool where corrupt officials once swam.
I attended the protest march against the pork barrel, Aug 26, walking from the JPII tower to the lagoon. The group called for the authentic abolition of the “pork barrel." We shouted and demanded for honest governance. Other groups did the same and shouted for the prosecution of the Pork violators and abusers.
However, honestly, I did not feel the intensity of the protest like the way I felt in the past. There was something lacking. There was an essential element that was not there. I cannot explain what it is. It seems like the intensity and the urgency were not present in the march. I had joined many protest actions in the past that I really felt satisfied after the event. In Monday’s event, I really did not feel that the message was sent to the ordinary people. I guess I am wrong and I am very wrong at this.
Anyway, the fight for good governance continues and shall continue till the end of time.
The pig and the cow are still there; it is not abolished, not minimized. They will continue to pester us and this administration might soon add the horse and the goat.
Congratulations to Rev. Fr. Emeterio Bunao, OAR and Fr. Dunstan Decena, OAR for their 50th anniversary in the Religious life. Once a religious will be a religious forever.
St. Monica and Augustine, St. Ezekiel Moreno, St. Lorenzo Ruiz, St. Pedro Calungsod, Sir Faraon Lopez, Monisgnori John Liu and John Su, pray for us.
Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on August 27, 2013.