Monday, February 27, 2006

Deja Vu All Over Again

UP Professor Florin T. Hilbay has made a curious observation regarding the text of Proclamation 1017, declaring a state of national emergency.

On Sept. 21, 1972, President Marcos issued Proclamation 1081. The first paragraph read:

NOW, THEREFORE, I, FERDINAND E. MARCOS, President of the Philippines by virtue of the power vested upon me by Article VII, Sec. 10, Paragraph (2) of this Constitution, do hereby place the entire Philippines as defined in Article I, Sec. 1 of the Constitution under martial law and, in my capacity as their Commander-In-Chief, do hereby command the Armed Forces of the Philippines, to maintain law and order throughout the Philippines, prevent or suppress all forms of lawless violence as well as any act of insurrection or rebellion and to enforce obedience to all the laws and decrees, orders and regulations promulgated by me personally or upon my direction.

The italicized portion of the above quote is contained, verbatim, in Ms Arroyo's proclamation minus the declaration of martial law and the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus.


After the 1986 snap elections, the CBCP issued a "POST-ELECTION STATEMENT." What follows is an excerpt from that document, and sadly, it still applies after all these years.

Government Based on the Polls . According to moral principles, a government that assumes or retains power through fraudulent means has no moral basis. For such an access to power is tantamount to a forcible seizure and cannot command the allegiance of the citizenry. The most we can say then, about such a government, is that it is a government in possession of power. But admitting that, we hasten to add: Because of that very fact, that same government itself has the obligation to right the wrong it is founded on. It must respect the mandate of the people. This is precondition for any reconciliation.

Response in Faith . If such a government does not of itself freely correct the evil it has inflicted on the people then it is our serious moral obligation as a people to make it do so.

We are not going to effect the change we seek by doing nothing, by sheer apathy. If we did nothing we would be party to our own destruction as a people. We would be jointly guilty with the perpetrators of the wrong we want righted.