Monday, December 7, 2009

Presidential aspirants hit Arroyo for Pampanga congressional bid

12/04/2009 | 05:47 AM

Original Story:

Several presidential aspirants has expressed opposition to President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s bid for a congressional seat representing Pampanga's second district, saying it is a mockery of the country’s highest post.

In a forum on Wednesday night, Former President Joseph Estrada said Arroyo’s decision to seek a lower position after nine years in Malacanang is a clear insult to the presidency.

“Naglingkod ka na sa taas. Hindi pa ba siya kuntento doon? (She has already served at the topmost level. Isn’t she satisfied yet?) That is very demeaning," said Estrada, who was replaced by Arroyo as president after a popular uprising in 2001.

The former president added that since Arroyo has already formalized her congressional bid last Monday, she should vacate the presidential post right away.

“She should resign, because all the government resources are under her thumb. Kawawa kalaban niya (Her opponents would be at a disadvantage)," he said.

Olongapo councilor and Ang Kapatiran party presidential bet John Carlos Delos Reyes also said that it is not right for the President to run for another position after her term.

“Hindi po ako sang-ayon na tumakbo si Arroyo dahil bagamat legal, ito ay labag sa delicadeza at labag sa propriety," he said in the same forum.

Delos Reyes vowed to support all efforts to block Arroyo’s entry into the House of Representatives, saying the President is setting a bad example among the country’s youth.

Another presidential aspirant, environmentalist Nicanor Perlas, said he would not let Arroyo evade possible cases that might be filed against her in 2010 if elected into office.

“I think it is a huge shame that Arroyo is running again for an elective office… (Ang promise ko), hahabulin ko kung anong kaso (ang isasampa laban sa kanya) to the greatest extent possible (I promise to go after the President if cases are filed against her to the greatest extent possible)," he said.

Sen. Benigno Simeon “Noynoy" Aquino III, the Liberal Party’s presidential candidate, meanwhile said he will oppose any moves to shift the government to a parliamentary form and subsequently elect Arroyo as House speaker and prime minister.

“I pledge I will stand up and oppose any effort to try to extend power. ‘Yung pagiging speaker, pagkakaintindi ko ay (paraan para magkaroon ng) power block. Bakit tayo papayag diyan? (I understand that her being House speaker is a way of forming a power bloc. Why would we let this happen?)" the senator said.

Sen. Richard Gordon, who is also running for president under the party Bagumbayan, urged voters in Pampanga’s second district to carefully study Arroyo’s motives before making their decisions in the 2010 polls.

“Nasa kababayan na natin ang husga, pero dapat muni-muniin ang pakay ni Gloria. (It is up to the people to decide, but they should really refect on Gloria’s motives.) We should consider if she there to end the Constitution, to have influence or to defend herself," he said.

Arroyo formally announced on Monday that she will be running for representative in the second district of Pampanga, where her hometown, Lubao, is located.

Administration critics say Arroyo’s move is only to avoid possible cases that might be hurled towards her one she ends her term in 2010, and a way to gain back power by changing the country’s form of government and assuming the role of prime minister. [See:] - ANDREO C. CALONZO, GMANews.TV

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