“The prime duty of the Government is to serve and protect the people…” – Article II, Section 4-Philippine Constitution
The fundamental purpose of the Government is to give order to a society and maintain its basic unity. It is created by the people, without the people there is no Government. Therefore, one of its thrust is to serve and protect the interest of the people.
For me, the party-list system is a scheme for the people to see that there is a representation of different sectors in our society. It is very essential to have the voices of the “marginalized and underrepresented” be heard in the Lower House. But since it started in 1998 election, it has been corrupted and ill-used by other pseudo-sectoral organizations backed and financed by prominent individuals, political parties and dynasties to serve their vested interest.
On my own analysis, the Administration has been using it for dominance in the Lower House. The more allies they have, the greater chances they control power, influence and money. They even enact laws that could be used to quell the movement of the opposition and the leftist organizations.
Last Tuesday, I have read a statement sent by BAYAN (Bagong Alyansang Makabayan) secretary general Renato Reyes Jr. on GMANews.TV that Palparan through BANTAY party-list enjoys the support of the Arroyo administration and the AFP during the 2007 election. From this, there is no need to question Palparans’ loyalty.
The infamous Jovito Palparan is a distinct and vital ally of the Arroyo regime. His background on suppressing by means of terrorizing the anti-Arroyo organizations, especially the leftists, is very useful for the Arroyos’ clinging to power.
Here are some lists of HR (human Rights) violations blamed by the militant organizations on Palparan (source: Bulatlat.com):
- 326 human rights cases, including about 80 killings, in Mindoro during his term as head of the Army’s 204th Infantry Brigade from 2001 to 2003.
- February 2005, he was installed chief of the 8th Infantry Division based in Eastern Visayas. There, he was accused of masterminding 199 cases of killings, disappearances, harassment, torture and other violations.
- September 2005, he took command of the 7th ID in Fort Magsaysay, Nueva Ecija. Within a month, 13 leaders and members of party-list group Bayan Muna and its affiliate organizations in Central Luzon
Though he denied the accusations, we are quite sure that Jovito Palparan will be one of the chief sponsors of the incoming pitches in congress that would aggravate the human rights violations in the country. Either in line to his alleged expertise in political killings or not, one thing that I’m sure is that he is one of the Arroyos henchmen: a tool for tyranny, killings and for her political survival.
Before I end this column, I would like to leave some questions for us to think of answers that I hope would be translated into concrete actions. First, if the role of our Government is to serve and protect the interest, life and liberty of the people, how could the government allow such a people’s threat (Palparan) installed in congress?
Second, leaders are seemingly ‘good’ examples. Is he worthy of a place in congress amidst the accusations and the records?
Third, the state guarantees full respect of human rights. Isn’t it unethical for an alleged butcher and human rights violator inaugurated in congress?
Fourth, not making a stand on this issue is like tolerating such criminality. Aren’t you going to lift a hand?