I have absolutely no doubt that today former Chief Justice Corona is now sitting back, in one of his luxurious armchairs, grinning to himself as he contemplates the total humiliation and potential destruction of the very same institution that so happily judged and impeached him just two years earlier.
In what must seem like a delicious irony, to the former Chief Justice, so many of his "Judges" from the Impeachment Trial, are now themselves facing allegations of corruption on such a grand scale that it actually has the potential to topple the institution itself. The "Napoles" list, The "Lacson" list, the "Luy" list may well all differ slightly as to the names of the Senators, Congessmen and Public Servants who were involved in what now appears to be a much greater scam than the initial P10 Billion scam of Janet Lim Napoles. One thing is for certain many, many public officials were in collusion with Ms Napoles and her cohorts as they blithely robbed the Filipino people blind of so much of the country's wealth. Only criminal trials will ultimately determine for sure who was actually involved and who should serve time for the heinous crime, but one thing is certain, many, many head should and will roll over this scam.
In my mind there are three distinct reasons why The Philippines ended up with the Government it deserved:
What I am saying here is that being born into a political family does not necessarily qualify you to be a politician. Voters need to look beyond the name and vote on issues, not family name. Why did I pick Nancy Binay's photo to highlight here? I would just pose the question: What experience and qualifications does Nancy Binay have to serve in The Philippine Senate? From what I can gather her experience is limited to helping Mummy out when she was Mayor of Makati, an office now held by her Brother Jejomar Binay Jr. In fact the City of Makati has been governed by the Binays for almost 30 years now, first by Jejomar Binay Snr, then by his wife Elenita Binay and now by the son Jejomar Jr. Do I see a pattern emerging here? Oh, I almost forgot she also apparently helped Daddy out in his role of Vice-President.
Before I leave this section there is one other issue I consider highlights the importance of "family name" in Philippine politics. Two of the latest and highest polling senators in the 2013 Senatorial Elections were Grace Poe (Daughter of Actor and Politician the late Fernando Poe Jr.) and Nancy Binay (Daughter of the Vice-President), who were the highest and fifth polling candidates respectively. My only issue here was their names. Prior to the elections these two ladies were known as Grace Poe-Lllamanzares and Nancy Binay-Angeles respectively; both used their married names. Yet come the election campaign they morphed into Grace Poe and Nancy Binay. The power of the family name comes to the fore! I wonder what their husbands thought about it?
To me, the Senate, beyond the Office of the President, should represent the cream of Philippine politics, but given all that has happened in the last few years, we have to ask the question: Has the cream curdled?
To my way of thinking an elector has a simple choice; take the money if its offered and still vote any damn way you please. Vote for the candidates that offer something real and tangible to the Philippine people; the candidates that offer a vision for the future; the candidates that really do want to change this country for the better.
If everyone does that, we might have a chance to never have to go through the humiliation and shame of yet another "Pork Barrel Scandal" As 2016 approaches it behooves every Filipino voter to cast his or her vote responsibly. Consider the candidate's qualities, their experience, their plans, their visions for the country and vote accordingly. The six years of the Aquino administration will have been far from perfect, but remember this; a start has been made to break the decades long presumption of corruption and self-serving public officials. Please let's not go back to the "bad" old days. Let's build a democracy to be proud of!
1/ I have a love for and a fascination in the political process; not just here, or in New Zealand, but all over the world.
2/ This is my country too now, I'm a permanent resident here and I intend to be here for many, many years...but I am not allowed to vote here.
3/ I'm not allowed to vote in New Zealand either, because I've been away from there for over three years, so essentially I'm stateless.
4/ I haven't been here long enough to get citizenship, but even if I want to, I'll have to renounce my New Zealand citizenship; which will be a big decision to make in the future.
It's ironical isn't it; The Philippines now allows its Pinoys overseas to have dual citizenship, yet they won't allow foreigners living here to claim dual citizenship...but that's a story for another day...