In Maguindanao massacre, the warlords are still alive!

Maguindanao warlords are drinking, feasting, and merrymaking because they have killed and immediately buried more than fifty people in just one morning. As of today, according to Inquirer report, the death toll reach to 57. This worst election-related killing saddened President Gloria Arroyo that she declared November 25 as the national day of mourning. “This is a supreme act of inhumanity that is a blight on our nation.” President Arroyo said in a statement quoted by the same Inquirer report.

Maguindanao massacre shocked the Filipino nation. The whole world is equally shocked because aside from women, 12 journalists were also killed.  “Never in the history of journalism have the news media suffered such a heavy loss of life in one day”, Reporters Without Borders noted.

I wish to add my voice to loud voice condemning the Maguindanao massacre and calling for swift justice.

But three days after the killings, no one was questioned. No one was arrested. Who wants to arrest the untouchables anyway. There are no untouchables, Malacanang told reporters. It seems physical and circumstantial evidences are not yet enough.

The President herself vowed to give justice to the victims. I hope she will.

I won’t label Maguindanao as killing field. Not yet this time. But sooner or later, that part in Mindanao becomes the killing field of warlords in the new century! Unless the President Arroyo mobilizes all her power to destroy the armed groups controlled by few families.

We lost 57 lives (and still counting) in Maguindanao massacre and we meet the warlords who still wield power.

By the way, who are the warlords? I think Commission on Human Rights chairwoman, Leila De Lima, can point them. I feel President Gloria Arroyo knows them.

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Pinoy Power movement and the preparation of Noynoy’s 2010 battle

Sen. Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III  is leveling off Sen. Manuel Villar’s preparation for 2010 presidential election. Noynoy’s is also pacing with his cousin Sec. Gilbert Teodoro’s political machinery’s advantage.

Earlier, Noynoy and his supporters told that they will launch a citizen campaign. This is interpreted as people-funded campaign and anchored on citizen’s volunteerism.

Pinoy Power movement

The national campaign is few months away but Pinoy Power already kicked off its own version of national campaign for Noynoy.

Pinoy Power, as described on its website called Pipol Power, is a movement composed of individuals and cause-oriented groups who have come together to work for the advancement of a wide-sweeping reform agenda for the Philippines. There is no explicit expression of the group’s support to Noynoy’s presidential bid on its website but it’s header speaks for it.

Recently (November 14, 2009), Pinoy Power organized student forum in University of San Carlos (USC) and University of Southern Philippines Foundation (USPF). The group claimed during the forum that all of them are volunteers and that they all share common goals, change and reform.

Noynoy’s sisters

Noynoy’s sister, Pinky Aquino Abellada and her son Miguel graced the event. Pinky gave short talk about his father’s legacy and shared how their family cope with pains and struggles brought by politics especially difficulties they had sustained  during Martial Law until Ninoy’s death. Pinky also answered students’ questions.

The Cebu Bloggers Society, as new media group, was invited to cover Pinoy Power’s Cebu fora. Together with CBS political and general interest bloggers, Kevin, Agnes, Sinjin, Mikyu, and Mark, I get a chance to get up-close to Pinky during the group’s lunch break. She has charm, a blogger observed. I noticed her warm attitude when she talk and her smart answers to questions.

The presence of Cebu’s political figures during the lunch and in the school forum seemed a green light for support to Noynoy.

From a reluctant sister of an initially reluctant presidential contender, Pinky Abellada emerges as Noynoy’s strong ally for Noynoy’s 2010 political battle.

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Deja Vu: Erap for President, Gloria for Vice President

President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo might run as Vice President in 2010! Ten years ago, in 1998, Arroyo ran as vice president and got  a landslide victory!

Earlier, former President Joseph Ejercito “Erap” Estrada declared that he will run as president in 2010. Ten years ago, in 1998, Erap ran as vice president and got a landslide victory!

It was the third election where both president and vice president came from different parties. Erap was running under Pwersa ng Masang Pilipino (PMP) and Gloria’s party was Lakas-NUCD-UMDP and Kabalikat ng Malayang Pilipino (Kampi).

Shall we have the fourth election where both president and vice president came from different parties? Shall we have Erap again in Malacanang? Shall we have both Erap and Gloria again?

Hold on, there is no serious talk about it yet in Lakas-Kampi-CMD, Representative Danilo Suarez, a senior deputy general of the party admitted as reported by Sun Star. But why he is talking about it to media. Is he trying to test the water?

Never again! This was the cry right after martial law. I don’t know if we say this after Erap and Gloria.

President Arroyo is rumored to run in congress. Many of her critics are believing that she will really run.

Yesterday, as the president once again visited her hometown in Pampanga, a breaking news that the President might run as Vice President circulated and got mixed reactions.

Let Erap run. Let Gloria run. If both of them got elected again, that’s another story.

Rise and fall of narco-communities

The country’s anti-drug czar, no less than President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, must have seen last night’s episode of ABS-CBN’s XXX. Perhaps she might consider getting the services of ABS-CBN’s program researchers and reporters!

The XXX episode narrated how an XXX asset (Does the network pay its asset?), with a secret camera, penetrated to a community of drug sellers, users, and supporters. As I watched, I feel the need to name such community. I think it is best to call it, narco-community!

The same episode also described how people of the entire community connived on selling and marketing drugs. There were guides for those who wish to enter a drug den; some individuals served as guard, trying to check their customer. Some areas are for customer (called as scorers) and one area is restricted to outsiders. It has this sign: Bawal ang scorer.

Shabu was sold like just another kind of commodity; drugs paraphernalia (aluminum foil strips) are sold in sari-sari store. The spy camera caught several men, some women, old and young, who were actively conniving on their narco-community activities. I appeared that they were doing the normal thing.

Narco-communities develop their own narcotics culture!

To make the episode spicy, XXX team went to Cavite police. With close coordination with Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA), Cavite police surprised the Imus narco-community! As expected, the police was shocked to what they seen, the mayor was equally surprised!

Really surprising? Or we need to get surprised to dramatize everything?

I don’t think the country’s anti-drug czar will get surprised!

I was not surprised. Why? This is not something new. Narco-communities don’t just thrive in Pasig (remember shabu tiange?) nor in Cavite. Narco-communities exist anywhere!

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