By Maila Ager
First Posted 16:19:00 11/30/2009
Filed Under: Politics, Elections, Eleksyon 2010
MANILA, Philippines - President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo's decision to run for Congress in 2010 was met by strong opposition at the Senate on Monday.
Senator Aquilino Pimentel Jr. said Arroyo's congressional bid only showed the absence of "delicadeza" in the country.
"GMA (Arroyo’s initials) is making the political playing field uneven versus all demands for fairness," Pimentel said in a text message. "She will hold (as president) the power and funds to crush the opposition.”
"While it's her right to do so, it surely leaves a bad taste in the mouth," said Senator Francis "Chiz" Escudero. "What else does she need to prove and accomplish?"
Senators Mar Roxas and Francis "Kiko" Pangilinan were one in saying that Arroyo's congressional bid was motivated "political survival."
"Yung may mga may sabit at takot na mafile-an ng mga kaso, tumatakbo dahil sa akala nila proteksyon ito (Those who are accountable for wrongdoing and afraid of getting sued are running for public office thinking this would offer protection)," said Roxas.
"I am not surprised. She is still motivated by political survival at all costs," Pangilinan said.
“I recall Senator Joker Arroyo saying that her running for Congress would be demeaning but to GMA, nothing is demeaning when it comes to political survival," he said.
Running for public office as a means to protect one's personal interests, Pangilinan noted, has been done countless of times in the past by many other politicians.
"Her decision to run for Congress is no different," he said, adding that since the “Hello Garci” controversy, Arroyo's sole focus has been political survival.
"And it is still political survival that has pushed her to seek a congressional seat, “Pangilinan said. “For GMA, it is better to be in office than out of it because the office and the powers that come with it will be used as a vehicle to protect herself.”
Despite this, Pangilinan predicted the President's victory in her own home province and that she would use her position to protect herself from any criminal prosecution.
He added: "In the final analysis, it is said that history can be a cruel judge and she cannot escape the judgment of history. None of us can."