Way to go, Mr. President!

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By Andy H. Hagad

Bottom Line

Friday, February 7, 2014


TWO statements made by President Aquino just days ago raised his stock with citizens like myself immensely. The first was his flat refusal to apologize to the Hong Kong Government for the Qurino Grandstand killing of Chinese tourists by a terminated police officer, and the second was his refusal to commit the same mistake the Allied Forces did when it tried to appease Hitler by surrendering a piece of land to Germany. This President has courage. He is also astute.

Of course he cannot apologize to the Hong Kong Government and people in the name of all Filipinos. We did not sanction and in fact disapproved what the late Rolando Mendoza did to those Chinese tourists. That is why he was killed. Why should President Aquino apologize in our name?

The apparent incompetence of the responding Manila policemen is the shame of the City of Manila, and as its Chief Executive, Mayor Joseph Estrada rightly volunteered to make the apology. It is a breach of protocol for the Hong Kong officials not only to officially reject Estrada’s sincere offer of apology, but to demand that President Aquino make it in behalf of the Filipino People instead.

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To add insult to injury, their officials are now implementing sanctions against us, to wrench an apology from our President. They who have never apologized for the horrors many of their citizens have committed on Filipino domestic helpers in Hong Kong have no standing to demand an apology for a horror one of our citizens committed on some of them. We have not demanded a single apology from their officials, preferring instead to let the justice in Hong Kong courts run its course. Why can’t they do the same?

President Noynoy was accurate when he likened the actions of the Chinese leadership as that of a bully. China is a signatory to United Nations agreements which stipulate that issues between countries be resolved via international arbitrations. It also signed agreements which set standards and policies to delineate the respective territories of neighboring states.

That notwithstanding, China unilaterally invoked Chinese “historical facts” to annex portions of the sea also claimed by the Philippines, Japan, Malaysia, Vietnam, to name a few. It then sent its warships and planes to control these areas and demanded that we ask its permission when our ships and planes sail or fly through.

When we referred the issue to international arbitration, China refused to cooperate, insisting that we instead negotiate with it one-on-one. With its ships and planes already guarding the areas of conflict and with its huge firepower trained against our pitiful Armed Forces, is it not the bully Goliath asking our David to arm-wrestle as a means to settle the issue “non-violently”, winner take all?

It is not that President Aquino is acting like a bully. He is simply reacting the way we citizens of a free and proud nation would. Way to go, Mr. President!

Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on February 07, 2014.

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