Espinoza: Outrageous!

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Espinoza: Outrageous!

Social media is either bane or boon. Those who were victimized by scammers using social media must have cursed it to hell several times. But put aside the scammers on social media, there are occasions that some posts are beneficial to many in some ways or another.

If not for the post on Facebook about the charter change campaign in Quezon City with the promise of remuneration in return for a signature, we would not have known that someone in Congress, whose identity is yet to be revealed, has started the people’s initiative (PI) campaign for charter change. Now, all fingers point to House Speaker Ferdinand Romualdez, first cousin of President BBM as the source.

Sen. Imee Marcos, in a radio interview, said it is no surprise that the ongoing PI on charter change has been linked to her cousin, House Speaker Romualdez, because his staff has been connected to the signature campaign.

The People’s Initiative for Modernization and Reform Action (Pirma) quickly admitted in a press interview that it is in the forefront of distributing signature forms all over the country in its campaign to collect signatures to push for charter change. Pirma is behind the ad that criticizes the 1987 Constitution.

Pirma lead convenor Noel Oñate bragged that he has spoken with Speaker Romualdez about the group’s signature campaign. Unbelievably, Speaker Romualdez has kept mum on this matter. But his cousin Senator Marcos has been vocal against the PI for charter change.

GMA News Online reported that Senator Marcos warned the Commission on Elections (Comelec) of facing technical malversation if the poll body will use its P12 billion additional budget to amend the 1987 Constitution. The Comelec requested additional funding for personnel but did not mention spending for a plebiscite, Senator Marcos said.

I have yet to hear or learn from my friends in our neighborhood, which is served by Rep. Cutie del Mar of Cebu City’s North District, if there is an ongoing campaign with a reward for cash for each signature that was started in Pasay City and other congressional districts in Luzon.

I do not think Rep. Cutie del Mar would join the campaign. Her father, the late Congressman Raul del Mar, opposed revising the 1987 Constitution. What about Rep. Edu Rama of Cebu City’s South Congressional District? Has he joined the signature drive?

Despite the flak from some legislators and media, who are against the push for charter change, Oñate claims that Pirma has been coordinating with congressmen, and the initiative has been receiving public support.

As to who is providing funds for Pirma to start this PI for charter change is a question that only those in Congress can answer.

I do not know if this is another drama, but I still give Senator Marcos’ statement the benefit of the doubt that her brother President BBM does not want charter change because it is just a waste of time and it might distract the administration from solving the real problems of the country.

According to Senator Imee, the President is really focused on economic recovery, considering the people are still struggling, prices are still high, and it’s still hard to find a good job.

What makes the PI signature campaign outrageous is that public funds are allegedly being used to get the signature of a qualified voter.

A prayerful “Pit Senyor” to everyone!


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