Articles Archive for November 2011
November 24, 2011
Reaction of ACT Teachers Party-List Representative Antonio L. Tinio on the Supreme Court decision to distribute Hacienda Luisita: “The Supreme Court ruling to distribute Hacienda Luisita is long-awaited and historic in its significance. At long last, the tillers of Luisita’s lands will become their owners. The decision to redistribute is firmly anchored on social justice and transcends the political conflicts of the day. It must be implemented immediately, with no less than President Aquino taking the lead.”
Novermber 23, 2011
In view of the conflicting reports coming from high court officials, ACT Teachers Party-List Representative Antonio L. Tinio today challenged the Supreme Court to immediately issue its official ruling on the 6,453-hectare sugar estate Hacienda Luisita.
An Inquirer report yesterday revealed a senior court official confirming the SC’s order to distribute the Luisita to the farmworkers through granting the motion for reconsideration of the Presidential Agrarian Reform Council (PARC) and the farmers’ group Ambala. In a matter of few hours, however, Supreme Court Administrator and Spokesperson Jose Midas Marquez denied the previous report.
Tinio expressed dismay on reports that the official ruling was supposed to come out yesterday but the failure of some magistrates to submit their individual opinions hampered it.
“Just like the prosecution of former President Gloria Arroyo, the Hacienda Luisita is a case that has been shelved for so long. It is high time that the Supreme Court resolve this decades-old dispute over Luisita. There has been so much bloodshed and farmworkers are still suffering to this day from various harassments in connection with their struggle for land,” said Tinio.
The ACT Teachers solon recounted the 2004 Hacienda Luisita massacre which claimed lives of 7 farmworkers and left 200 others wounded.
Tinio called on the Supreme Court to adhere to its target release of official announcement, which will be on the next few days. “Let us give the farmworkers what is due them,” ended Tinio.#
ACT Teachers Party-List Rep. Antonio L. Tinio (0920-922-0817)
Julie Anne D. Tapit, Media Officer (0915-762-6522)
MANILA, Philippines (UPDATE) – Former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo should quit as congresswoman of Pampanga’s 2nd District now that she is facing electoral sabotage charges before a local court, a lawmaker said Tuesday.
In a statement, Bayan Muna Rep. Teddy Casiño said Arroyo will be unable to function effective in Congress “considering her prolonged detention due to the string of serious, unbailable charges that she faces.”
He also said Arroyo brought “embarrassment and dishonor” to the House of Representatives after she was charged with manipulating the results of the 2007 election.
“Therefore she should now do the House and her constituents a favor by resigning from Congress,” he said.
Casiño said a special election can then be called in her district so the people can elect a working, suitable representative in Congress.
Another party-list lawmaker, Alliance of Concerned Teachers’ Rep. Antonio Tinio, also echoed Casiño’s call for Arroyo to resign.
Tinio said Arroyo’s “culpable actions as President have long rendered her unfit for public service; her present incarceration renders it impracticable.”
Meanwhile, Gabriela party-list Rep. Luz Ilagan said it would be up to Arroyo to resign. She criticized the alleged VIP treatment of Arroyo, particularly the hospital arrest of the former president.
Ilagan said Arroyo’s prosecution is the only way for impunity to end.
Her fellow lawmaker, Gabriela Rep. Emmy de Jesus, said she wants President Aquino to know and feel their sentiments supporting the quick prosecution of cases against Arroyo.
Separately, Akbayan lawmakers slammed any possible moves by Arroyo’s allies to accord Arroyo some protection.
“The people’s right to justice must take precedence over the right of a single individual. The Minority should stop treating this House as if it were a shelter for crooks, plunderers, and criminals,” Akbayan Rep. Kaka Bag-ao said in a statement.
Akbayan Rep. Walden Bello argued that Gloria has no right to special treatment.
“A hospital arrest is better than protective custody. But if there is fear of real threats to her well being, the DOJ can simply increase its complement of PNP and DOJ personnel providing security for her,” Bello said.
The party-list congressman also pointed out that it would be unwise to bring Arroyo to the Batasang Pambansa where she would be closer to her staunchest allies. “At a time when all of Gloria’s escape routes are blocked off, bringing GMA to Congress would open a little window of opportunity for her to plot her final escape,” he said.
House Deputy Speaker Lorenzo Tañada III earlier said the electoral sabotage case cannot be used to remove Arroyo as a member of the lower House since it involves allegations that supposedly occurred before she became a lawmaker.
He stressed that only after conviction by final judgment can Arroyo be removed from office.
In the meantime, Arroyo’s son and Ang Galing Pinoy party-list Rep. Juan Miguel “Mikey” Arroyo may be designated a caretaker of his mother’s district, where he served before 2010. Report from RG Cruz, ABS-CBN News
Tuesday, November 22, 2011
ANG Galing Pinoy party-list Representative Juan Miguel “Mikey” Arroyo may be designated as the caretaker of the second district of Pampanga after her mother, former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, was placed under arrest.
Aside from the other three legislators representing Pampanga in the House of Representatives, Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr. said Mikey Arroyo “can also qualify” considering that he held his mother’s position from 2004 to 2010 before he ran as a party-list congressman.
The three other representatives of Pampanga are Carmelo Lazatin (first district), Aurelio “Dong” Gonzales (third district), and Anna York Bondoc (fourth district).
“At the moment, she’s pretty much in control of the district and if she’d ever reach a point not to discharge her duties but still hold a position, we can assign a caretaker…She can still do things through her staff,” Belmonte told reporters in a press briefing Tuesday.
Belmonte issued the statement after some members of the progressive party-list bloc called for the resignation of former President Arroyo.
“Her arrest and trial for her string of cases will definitely prevent her from effectively fulfilling her duties in Congress. This is aside from the point that her continued membership further tarnishes the House’s honor,” Bayan Muna Representative Teddy Casino said in a text message.
For his part, ACT Teachers Representative Antonio Tinio, said “it will become impossible” for Arroyo to discharge all her duties considering that the electoral sabotage case she is facing is only one of many charges she has to account for.
Belmonte, however, stressed that the presumption of innocence should be upheld. He said Arroyo’s colleagues should not demand her resignation considering the trial has not even started.
“But at any rate, resignation is always a personal matter and we cannot impose that,” he added.
Arroyo is currently under hospital arrest at the St. Luke’s Medical Center in Taguig City after being implicated in the manipulation of the 2007 election results. She is facing non-bailable electoral sabotage charges and may face lifetime imprisonment.
House leaders say that if Arroyo is convicted in the courts, she will automatically be expelled from the House of Representatives.
Arroyo ran as the second district representative of Pampanga after her nine-year term as President.
Belmonte meanwhile said Arroyo will continue to receive her priority development assistance fund (PDAF) more popularly known as “pork barrel”.
“The pork barrel after all is for the good of the district and they should be released,” he said.(Sunnex)