Anti-pork advocacy-A A +A
Sunday, September 1, 2013
ADVOCACY groups against the pork barrel should take the cudgels for pushing the advocacy against the pork barrel.
The middle class mass action, though short of the million mark last week, pushed the Aquino administration to take a step back and announced its position favoring line budgeting of legislators’ projects instead of the PDAF.
While the so-called leaderless movement–mobilized mainly through online social networks–articulated the people’s sentiments against pork barrel, the Aquino administration is obviously trying to co-opt and redirect its trajectory.
We all know, however, that line budgeting of pork barrel projects still is pork barrel. President Aquino’s spin doctors should realize that the pork barrel advocates are not fooled. But like his position on “Freedom of Information,” the President is obviously clinging on to patronage politics, albeit minus his political enemies.
We should be clear in our position. Legislators are supposed to legislate, not identify projects to satisfy constituents and get their SOP in the process.
Congressmen and senators who are just after the pork barrel will say all they want about funding pro-people projects. But Congress is supposedly our legislative branch of government. Legislators should legislate, not carry out projects.
Malacañang’s role on the surrender of Janet Napoles, I believe, is a bid to grab hold of the pork barrel-Napoles issue and direct it at four opposition senators: Senators Bong Revilla, Juan Ponce Enrile, Jinggoy Estrada and Gringo Honasan.
I am not against senators falling down like dominoes because they are caught dipping their hands into the pork barrel with Janet Napoles. But this should not keep us from the task of removing the pork barrel and striking a fatal blow on traditional politics.
The libel case against ace broadcaster Leo Lastimosa is far from over. The lower court’s decision is obviously unpopular and could be overturned at the Court of Appeals. It’s just that the decision could embolden other politicians (like Mayor Mike Rama’s threat to sue City Hall beat reporters who refuse to sing his tune) to indiscriminately file libel cases just for harassment.
I just hope that fellow media colleagues would look into press freedom issue with the celebration of KBP Month and Press Freedom Week this September.
The pork barrel and Napoles issue eclipsed news that the Philippine economy posted a 7.5-percent growth during the second quarter of 2013. This makes our economy the fastest growing in the Asean region.
At least, the unbridled election spending did something good for the economy. But this definitely is not a formula for sustainable growth with Asean integration just around the corner.
Yep, they are saying manufacturing has rebounded. Manufacturing by foreign-owned firms that are competing with local brands? When will our policymakers realize that the formula for sustainable growth lies in the emerging communities of Filipino technopreneurs?
I am just glad that these communities are moving on their own, independent of government (that is expected to claim credit later).
More than the rescue efforts, the priority two weeks after mv Sulpicio Express Siete rammed and sank the mv St. Thomas Aquinas should be siphoning off the oil still trapped inside the sunken ship.
As I understand from Dr. Rex Sadaba, program manager of the UP Visayas oil spill cleanup program, no amount of coastal cleanup will suffice unless the source of the spill has been stopped.
Thanks to the 2GO Group that contracted the services of Dr. Sadaba, two Japanese firms are now plugging the holes of the oil tanks. Equipment is expected to arrive from Japan on Sept. 6 and the whole oil retrieval operation will take a month.
2GO had organized a forum with Cordova Mayor Adelino Sitoy, barangay officials, students, and members of the Cebu media to guide community efforts to deal with the oil spill. Dr. Sadaba, who was the main lecturer, said there is a need for a comprehensive study of the ill effects of the oil spill.
Dr. Sadaba told reporters that he was glad with the kind of reporting here in Cebu compared to what he experienced during the Guimaras oil spill in 2006.
The general response of the Cebuano community was also organized under the leadership of Gov. Junjun Davide, he said.
With 2GO representatives on top of the cleanup operations, one Cordova councilor asked something in the minds of many during Saturday’s forum: “Asa man ang Sulpicio?”
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on September 02, 2013.