Thursday, October 9, 2008

SC’s betrayal of the people.

The Supreme Court’s denial of the Motion for Reconsideration (MR) of Senator Antonio Trillanes IV to attend Senate sessions and serve his mandate as senator of the Republic is an unashamed, blatant betrayal of the principles of democracy and the people’s will. The Supreme Court based its decision on its claimed risk of “flight” of the senator, even though the latter has never attempted to escape or evade his duties to the Constitution or the Law. In fact, he has dutifully fulfilled everything that he pledged to do as a citizen and soldier, which are to expose inequities and corruption, and defend the nation. We cannot say the same of the members of the SC today as they are heirs to the desecration of Davide, being handpicked by this corrupt Arroyo regime. While the revolution waits, there will be no law or justice in this land.

Adding the final insult and injury to Trillanes’ eleven million voters, the SC even denied Senator Trillanes the right to have his Senate staff visit him in his place of detention, which encumbers him from carrying out his duties. In the first place, Senator Trillanes is innocent of the crimes the Arroyo regime charged him with because voters have already absolved him through their expression of their democratic judgment in entrusting him with a Senate mandate. Secondly, even Arroyo’s court has yet to prove him guilty, which means Trillanes should be presumed innocent and no obstacle to his service to the nation can be justified. Thus, the SC has become criminal in doing this; though I doubt if Trillanes can be fully prevented from finding ways to serve the people.

In all, Senator Trillanes has continued to serve with distinction despite the severely constricted conditions imposed on him. He has filed 138 bills (making him the fifth most prolific in the Senate), nine resolutions, and one joint resolution. Of these, he is co-author of RA 9502, the Quality & Affordable Medicines Act of 2007, and RA 9500, the University of the Philippines Charter of 2007, which have been passed into law. Among my favorites of his legislative work are: SB 1448 - An Act Repealing the eVAT Law (which would reduce the burdens on the people); SB 2058 - An Act Providing Post-harvest Facilities to Rice Farmers; and SB 1591 - An Act Amending the Automatic Appropriations Law [PD 1177] to Augment IRAs of LGUs (to be taken away from the bankers for distribution to the people).

Here’s more: SB 2254 - An Act Providing for a Ceiling on All Public Debts of the Republic of the Philippines and for Other Purposes; SB 2273 - An Act That Seeks to Trim Down the Areas of Investments of GSIS (to only those that assure predictability in order to protect the mass of members from the vagaries of trade and commerce, and from enterprises with false pretensions of track record of profitability to stop speculative investments such as the GSIS’ foreign placements now being covered up); SB 2302 - An Act Setting Limits on the Power of the President to Reappoint By-passed Nominees; and SB 1467 – An Act Defining the Archipelagic Baselines of the Philippine Archipelago, Amending for the Purpose RA 3046 as Amended by RA 5446 (expanding RP’s economic zone).

Therefore, there’s no telling what greater contributions Senator Trillanes can make if he is allowed to fully serve in the Senate; but that is exactly what the Arroyo regime and its corrupt instrumentalities fear. In the face of such a dedicated, principled and creative young leader as Trillanes, all the appointees of Gloria in all branches of government, including the Supreme Court, would be exposed as the corrupt dead beats that they are.

Strange as it may sound to those oppressing Senator Trillanes today, the young soldier-senator actually believed that there is decency and integrity in the judicial system; hence, his faith in keeping with the processes of law. One can even accuse Faeldon of “danger of flight” for he escaped twice, yet Trillanes has always abided by the terms of his incarceration.

So the SC has become absolutely ridiculous in claiming the Manila Peninsula incident as an attempt at “flight” or escape. If that were Trillanes’ intention, he would have long been gone, taking the numerous transports available at that moment on Makati Avenue and the many hours available to whisk off to destinations unknown. He could have been free to roam around the country indefinitely, just as Faeldon is now, but Trillanes has chosen to keep the dignified stance of a prisoner of conscience and an active dissenter, and never once hid from the consequences of his actions. Even during the last hours of Manila Pen, Trillanes could have escaped; but a leader chooses not to do that. A leader stays with his people, as Trillanes correctly does up to this day.

The plain truth about that SC denial of Trillanes’ MR is that right from the start, the justices of Gloria were dead set on denying Trillanes’ eleven million voters their right to be represented by their chosen senator and preventing him from leading this broad following.

Consider this: The counsels of Trillanes received the first SC denial on July 10, 2008. They then had 15 days to file their answer, which they did on July 25, a Friday, at around 4:30 in the afternoon. Their answer would only have been distributed to SC members on a Monday, the 28th, since it was immediately calendared on the 29th, the following day, but this was the same date in which a decision was made -- which means the SC justices did not even read and consider the arguments or evidences raised in the motion!

To further illustrate the SC’s malice on Trillanes’ motion, consider that it took the court eight months to act on the MR on Neri’s “Executive Privilege” case, whereas it had kept quiet about its decision on the Trillanes case only until several Senators initiated moves to intervene, at which time media accidentally discovered the SC denial of Trillanes’ MR, thereby rendering the Senate’s interest on the issue moot and academic.

Here, the SC’s spite toward Trillanes’ petition is clear and incontrovertible, but should we still be surprised? Even as Puno tries to window-dress the SC’s record, his court has still been dismal in all crucial cases. However, in this Trillanes case, the political and corrupt Supreme Court has further upped the ante as it exposed its canine subservience to Gloria and its betrayal of the people -- a corruption worse than the Sabio episode in the Court of Appeals.