Editorial: Justice has eyes-A A +A
Thursday, April 3, 2014
DURA lex, sed lex. Roughly translated to "the law is harsh, but it is the law," connotes that the law must be strictly followed and enforced, yet the country continues to struggle to see this.
Best examples of this? Former presidents Erap and Gloria Arroyo, and Janet Lim Napoles. Despite Lady Justice portrayed as blindfolded to be able to administer justice fairly no matter who is concerned, it seems the Philippines has established its own idea of her, eyes wide open, ready to discriminate.
All are linked with high-profile crimes, two have been charged and one has even been convicted, but none are behind bars. In the case of Erap, the country poured in a great deal of resources and time to reach a verdict in his plunder case, only for the end result to be revoked, much like a series finale which aired recently.
Instead of the law being equally harsh in the enforcing of the penalties, it seems to be the country's largest symbol of disparity between socio-economic classes. The high-profile personalities enjoy the benefits of special considerations due to their sicknesses, your run-of-the-mill prisoners continue to be packed in like sardines inside jails where the living conditions are only a fraction of what hospitals can grant, and you can bet your bottom dollar that there are a slew of convicts out there who need medical assistance as well.
Sadly, at the highest level of the courts, it seems that it is not justice at work but politics. If only the politicians cared for their allies as much as they do the people of country then maybe the Philippines' development would be heading in the right direction.
It is high time to put the blindfold back on Lady Justice's eyes and make equal everyone before her mercy.
Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on April 04, 2014.