Olongapo SubicBay BatangGapo Newscenter

Sunday, July 03, 2005

PROCESS OF THE CONSTITUTION MUST BE FOLLOWED

Transcript of Senator Gordon Interview with Senate Media

1. On the Fist Gentleman taking a leave.

SEN. GORDON: I thought the decision was on the part of Mike for what I saw on television before I left. It was on the part of the First Gentlemen to volunteer to leave. You will recall that this representation was the first to ask Mikey and Iggy to resign or to take a leave of absence and face the music with the ombudsman and now the decision on the part of the First Gentleman to offer himself or volunteer, to me I think is a difficult one because he is leaving at the time when his wife, the President, is in crisis. That is a tremendous sacrifice first and foremost which I appreciate. But the point that I want to raise is every President has always had a tar-baby in his or her family. Meaning to say, the public, the media and all of us at times attack certain members of the family of the President whether it is President Estrada, President Ramos or anybody else in the past. They always attack the family but nothing seems to have ever been resolved. You know the process was never tested. Nobody has really gone to jail on the part of any member of any first family. So it is all part of the political noise as far as I am concerned.

By this action it clears the air for the President when they leave or in the case of Mike Arroyo or Mikey Arroyo when he takes a leave of absence, it clears the air for the President to be able to focus on governance and to focus on the case that maybe filed against her and this is crucial.


2. On the President accepting that it was her voice on tape.

The other night the President decided to go on television on her own and she said, she was sorry. She made an indiscretion but I think it was wrong to say "lapses of judgment", just an indiscretion to speak to a member of the Comelec while the process is going on. But on the other hand, from this representation's point of view, the President in effect was saying "let us remove it from the speculative, from the political, from the partisan hysteria that have been going on". And she has now put it into a legal framework. In other words, "I am ready to face what ever charges you may put up in accordance with the statement that I made". "So, file your case and I am ready". She did not say that but to me that is how I took it. Pwede na akong humarap. I did not do any illegality although I created an act of indiscretion. So now it is in the legal process.

Now the process will go to impeachment or a case in court if that is needed, if that is to be done. Now we can really lessen the political noise and focus on the process that should come out as to whether one is legal or illegal.


3. On calls for a Snap Election.

All these calls about snap election I think are ludicrous. We have a process. President Ramos is correct when he says he does not believe in a snap election. Why? Kung matanggal si Gloria, mayroon pang vice-president. Ang sinasabi ba natin ay isasa-isangtabi natin palagi ang proseso just because nagkakagulo tayo at hindi tayo nagkakaintindihan. We all know that President Arroyo entered at the time when the country was divided. Pinalitan niya si Erap. Hati ang bayan. Nag-eleksiyon at close yun eleksiyon. Nanalo siya over a million votes pero hati pa rin ang perception ng bayan and since that time bakbakan nang bakbakan on the issue ng dayaan except for Sen. Lacson who said na si President Arroyo won. He does not see any kalokohan. I remember it came out, I think in the Inquirer right after the election and that we should now proceed to the task of governance.

But the point was in spite of that, ang bayan ay hati at sinasabing may dayaan. Since when do they have an election na sinasabing walang dayaan? And to me, that is where the problem lies. This country apparently cannot close and cannot accept a process of closure upon anything. We cannot close the debate on whether Aguinaldo or Bonifacio was a hero. We cannot close the debate on Collaborators and people who are real heroes in World War II. We cannot close the debate on Marcos and Aquino. We cannot close the debate on Erap. We cannot close the debate on coup plotters and now another case which we cannot close.

But the process was there created by way of a plebiscite. When we chose a Constitution, we chose a process. In the same manner that when somebody shoots somebody in front of you even if the judge saw it, even if you saw it and the whole world saw it has to go to a process of a trial. He has to be tried and he is entitled to defense, he is entitled to lawyers and he is entitled to confront the witnesses on his behalf. That is the process. That is why to me the remarks of the President the other day was a very, very difficult one. No doubt, yet as it is very difficult for Susan Roces-Poe to appear without emotion on national TV today. She has to be emotional. Galit siya because hindi nga natin ginagamit yun proseso. Now, when the president appeared before the television the other day and said Ako yun kumausap then she is saying now stop all this speculation, stop the political noise and let us go to the legal and that is where we must proceed. The process of the Constitution must be followed.


REPORTER: Sir, going back doon sa desisyon ng First Gentleman to leave the country, do you think Mikey and Iggy Arroyo should do the same?

GORDON: He has already taken a leave of absence. He is out of the picture unless they call into the jueteng hearing kaya lang may nakababad nga na jueteng hearing and I understand Sandra Cam filed a case against them. She is following the process then they must appeal in the process of the Sandiganbayan or the Ombudsman as the case maybe. That is what I mean when I say that there is a process. That is where you should try them. Just like Michael Jackson, everybody said Michael Jackson is a pedophile but when the process came in everybody accepted the verdict. That's the way it is.


REPORTER: Has the First Gentleman become a liability?

GORDON: You know that they have always made the First Gentleman a liability. You know that and everybody knows that. Yung kalaban ng president kung hindi siya matamaan ang babarilin palagi ay yung kamag-anak. This is the case of Erap. Tinitira noong araw sina Jude and Jinggoy. This is the case of Ramos, tinitira yung certain Arenas. This is the case of Cory Aquino, Kamag-anak Incorporated. Don't you remember that? They will always hit the kamag-anak. Marcos, Carlos Polistico Garcia and Ramon Magsaysay had the same thing.

So importanteng malaman natin to differentiate the political noise, the political hysteria from the legal process. That is what we must remember. What is the end game here? Who suffers the most by this controversy. Kung magresign si President, assuming for the sake of argument, who takes over? The Vice-President. Kung guguluhin na naman yan, suffer na naman ang bayan. Kung mag snap election suffer na naman ang bayan. Why? Because the whole world is looking at a country without a process. They settling it in grossly debate in the Media that means loss of confidence no longer upon our leaders but upon our people and upon our country. So who is going to invest? Even among our people, who is going to invest right now in our own country kung hindi natin ma-settle ang proseso?

Right now, kung galit ka kay Gloria, talagang galit ka kay Gloria, yun ang labanan eh. Kung pabor ka sa kabila, pabor ka sa kabila. Kung ikaw ay gusto makapasok ngayon sa eleksiyon, nakikita naman natin kung sino ng lahat ang pumuporma ngayon, lahat tumakbo di ba? Even in the Congress nakikita natin may mga tumatalon. This is the time for opportunism. Personal opportunism is the rule of the game now. Not what is needed and what is best for our country.

I don't want to comment on whether Gloria is guilty or not because I could be a Judge in an impeachment trial. I am not going to touch on that but I can still say that what I am seeing is purely political-partisan hysteria on both sides. Each one is name-calling, each one saying bakbakan tayo but nobody speaking for Mang Juan dela Cruz. Nobody is thinking of what is the next problem. Tumaas na ang gasoline at $60.55 a barrel. It is bound to increase some more. What is our game plan? May VAT pa ngayon. How are we going to do that? When the VAT is collected how are we going to spend it so that ma-alleviate yung problems on education? These are problems that we have to face.

Natatakot ako sa mga statement na "ninakaw na ang eleksiyon" because I don't think there was any. So far, hindi pa klaro kung nagdayaan. At kung nagdayaan dapat talagang dapat managot ang Presidente kung nagdayaan. Dapat managot ang Comelec kung nagdayaan. Pero may proseso iyan.


REPORTER: Sir, pwede pakiulit yung sinabi ninyo na opportunisn is the name of the game now?

GORDON: Right now, it seems that political opportunism is the name of the game. All the people that have lost are trying to join the debate. All the people who want to become President are trying to come in. All the people who want to run for the Senate, nagpapakitasaTV, todo-todo. Now, walang masama doon pero dapat ipakita nila tung tunay na pagmamahal niya sa bayan and debate in accordance with the interest of the nation not just sumasakay sila sa isyu na may problema kaya kanain natin ng kanain at medyo popular iyan pero pag pumihit iba na naman. Palaging pumipihit kapag iba na ang tugtog di ba? Alam niyo naman yan. Biglang lumalabas yung mga dating natalo. Actually hindi ako nagtataka, I expected that and that is part of democracy and that is part of their political rights.

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