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Showing posts from May, 2009

Time to Become Accountable

When I, together with some other bishops and members of the urban poor, joined the farmers who went on huger strike in December, 2008, I prayed fervently not so much for strength of body but for elasticity of patience and continuous belief in good faith. It was heart-rending for me to see how everyday the farmers would fight against weakness and call on the congresspersons to give them their due, in so few but sincere words. I fought hard as well, trying not to hate the men and women legislators who would continue to disregard the farmers and pass by them in a hurry to get to their Christmas parties…to enjoy their bounty. Every time I felt discouraged I would close my eyes and assure myself that justice would come, maybe during the six-month period the legislators afforded themselves to study and introduce “perfecting amendments” to the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program.It has been more than five months since that day Congress issued that Joint Resolution which to me was a promise…

Protecting Whose Agenda?

I recently visited the lobby of the House of Representatives session hall. I immediately noticed the newly renovated walls bearing pictures of significant events in Congress’s history. Among those pictures pertaining to the present Congress was a photo of a booklet with the following words printed on its cover:

“Sustaining the Growth, Spreading the Benefits:
A Legislative Reform Agenda for the House of the People.” – House Speaker Prospero Nograles

This made me ponder for a while. Amidst all the seemingly unsound and doubtful legislative proposals and policies cropping up in Congress these days, I could not help but wonder. Whose growth are our national leaders trying to sustain? Are the laws churned out by this body upon which we, as a people, have entrusted our wisdom really for the benefit of the Filipino? There is one House measure which has piqued my concern at the moment. I came across this House Resolution (HR) No. 737 which, essentially, proposes to grant ownership of Philippin…