Be ready to take to the streets: Cory
Warns of tribunal flip-flop on ‘initiative’
AN anti-charter change coalition launched yesterday by President Corazon Aquino, the opposition and civil society groups said it would call on the people to march in the streets if the Supreme Court would uphold the Palace-backed people’s initiative.
But for the moment, the coalition Sa Tamang Oras at Paraan (STOP) will focus on filing court petitions at the district level to stop election officials from verifying signatures gathered by Cha-cha advocate Sigaw ng Bayan.
Bishops said they will provide moral and spiritual guidelines, but the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines will not take an active role in STOP.
Aquino urged coalition partners to start preparing for a possible reversal by the Supreme Court of its previous ruling against people’s initiative.
The tribunal in 1997 ruled that the law on initiative and referendum applies only to ordinances and laws; it is inadequate to cover people’s initiative for charter amendments.
"It’s important that we decide now (on) what we are prepared to do (next). It took us 14 years to act against Martial Law, but I hope and, considering my age, it won’t take that long. The key is to make a commitment again and again," she said.
Aquino led a similar coalition in 1997, which staged a massive rally at Luneta Park, against a proposed amendment to lift term limits.
The 1997 Cha-cha campaign was stopped cold by the Supreme Court ruling on people’s initiative.
Joining Arroyo at the STOP launching were Senate President Franklin Drilon, Makati Mayor Jejomar Binay, president of the United Opposition (UNO), and House minority leader Francis Escudero, UNO secretary general.
More here: ‘Sa tanda kong ito, ngayon pa matatakot?’
From the Tribune:
It is not the right time to change the Charter.
This was the main theme espoused by former President Corazon Aquino, as she continued her salvo against Charter change (Cha-cha), while stressing that the Arroyo government must first address the pressing problems in the country before moving to change the Constitution.
She was joined in at the Club Filipino by former vice president Teofisto Guingona, who said the government’s decision to institute reforms was a mere “cover-up” to divert people from the real issues.”
Aquino and Guingona are at the forefront of “STOP (Sa Tamang Oras at Paraan) Cha-cha,” which seeks “to ardently oppose the Cha- cha railroad” of Mrs. Arroyo.
Plus this from the Black-and-White movement blog. Maraming pictures sila sa post na yun.
Yesterday, in historic Kalayaan Hall of Club Filipino, political, religious, business, academic, legal, and civil society leaders gathered to share their thoughts and ideas on how best to to derail Gloria Arroyo's Cha Cha Train. No printed invitations were sent out, each and every person there was either invited by a friend or had heard about it and decided to attend...
As part of the secretariat that put this meeting/workshop against Gloria's Cha Cha, the Black & White Movement, along with members of the Hyatt 10, Akbayan, Laban ng Nasa, UNO and other groups worked over a frenetic two week period to make it possible. We had to be sensitive to the various convictions of those in attendance. Not all of the participants shared the same core beliefs, but what was apparent yesterday was the respect we all had for these beliefs and the willingness to put them aside. Respect, after all, is what Gloria doesn't have for anyone. It was heartening to see it in abundance in Club Filipino.
The discredited CPR is being rehabilitated in the guise of strict implementation of the "no permit no rally" rule. Police officials, after initially saying they would revert to the "maximum tolerance" policy, are now talking of arresting "violators" of the law on public assembly. We can already see the practical effects of this "get-tough" stance. If policemen try arresting demonstrators in rallies without permits, the latter for sure will resist. Violence will be the inevitable result.
What takes the cake is Justice Secretary Raul Gonzalez’ warning yesterday that in case protesters march and lay "siege" to Malacañang on Labor Day, the administration would not hesitate to re-impose a state of emergency.
Warrantless arrests, ban on demonstrations and muzzling of the press again?
Gloria and her people only have contempt for the Constitution. But do they have to be this brazen?
Read the whole thing. Unconstitutional na ang CPR, pero mukhang may posibilidad na masi-CPR ulit ang mga protesters na ayaw bigyan ng permit to rally ng mga kaalyadong mayors ng Malacanang.
From Lito Banayo, on the "9 million visits" on the "Sigaw ng Bayan" website claim made by Bel Cunanan:
Her running dogs include kuno academics and kuno legal minds whose main front organization they call "Sigaw ng Bayan", funded kuno by the private sector, and whose website kuno had as much as 9 million hits in a few weeks which Manolo Quezon in a column for another paper correctly pointed out as arithmetically impossible. Peke na nga ang "people’s initiative" nila, pinipeke pa pati response. Well, what could you expect in the administration of a pekeng pangulo? "Singaw ng Bayan", our friend Jorge Balagtas prefers to call this group of fakes.
Heh. And from his article, nabalitaan ko na nagbukas na ulit ang "Mall 168."