Whose Behind AO# 187 sign now


WHOSE BEHIND A.O. 187 OF PGMA: THE REAL STORY

(After losing all elections they participated in, Partido Demokratiko Sosyalista ng Pilipinas [PDSP] is moving heaven and earth to take over the helm of the National AntiPoverty Commission [NAPC] making it as their front and milking cow for their party machinery build up and political multi-sectoral base organizing for the upcoming 2010 electionshopefully to win this time.)

On October, 17, 2006, on the occasion of International Day of Overcoming Extreme Poverty, a NAPC En Banc meeting was convened by the President. The 14 Basic Sectors (BS) took opportunity to discuss with PGMA the issue of delayed appointment of four BS Representatives for the NGO, the Urban Poor, the Women, and the Farmers sectors. PGMA instructed then NAPC Lead Convenor Secretary Zamzamin Ampatuan to facilitate a meeting with Presidential Adviser for National Security, Sec. Norberto Gonzales to settle this issue on the non-appointment of four BS Representatives.

Before the meeting could take place, we learned that a NAPC Undersecretary met with Sec. Gonzales and submitted a list of organizations to show that the selection of the incumbent council members is legitimate, with the required number of participating POs and NGOs from the grassroots up to the national levels. This was done to convince Sec. Gonzales that it is not the NAPC alone who determines the participants of the sectoral assemblies but a preparatory committee, observing the principles of sectoral autonomy and inclusivity.

Although clueless on the rational or logical justification why the remaining appointments should pass through Sec. Gonzales, the Basic Sector Forum (BSF) composed of the ten (10) representatives already appointed and twelve (12) council members short listed for the four (4) more without representatives met with Sec. Gonzales. We presented our views and he seemed convinced that the four (4) more representatives should be appointed. But nothing happened after the meeting; the four sectors remain without BS Representatives to this day.

Right before the July 2007 NAPC Special En Banc meeting, we learned that a series of meetings were held at the National Security Council (NSC) attended by Dept of Agriculture Asec. Maya Santos, NAPC Asec. Dolly Castillo and NAPC Director Joyce del Rosario. Sec. Gonzalez took advantage of these cluster meetings to explain that the BS membership needs to be cleansed because it is allegedly infiltrated by the enemies of the State who are members of anti-PGMA forces.

During the 30 July 2007 Special NAPC En Banc meeting at Malacanang Palace, before the meeting adjourned, PGMA announced that she had just signed an Administrative Order that all basic sector groups planning to participate in the National Sectoral Assemblies starting this 2008 will have to be accredited by the Office of the President. Which office in the OP, this was not clear in the unnumbered AO (that later became AO 187). The NAPC-NSC group then came up with implementing guidelines that required, among others, participants to the national sectoral assemblies sign a waiver that they are not espousing and will not directly or indirectly espouse arms struggle.

Come to think of it; why did the President direct us to meet the NSC adviser? Are the four un-appointed sectoral nominees being considered as threats to national security? Are the four sectors considered enemies of the state? It is unfair and undemocratic to brand the four sectors that they are all enemies of the state. It is also unjust to disenfranchise the four sectors on mere allegations that some of them have connections with the Hyatt 10 Anti-PGMA groups.

In the said NAPC Special En Banc meeting, PDSP personalities Father Archie Intengan, SJ, Luisito Lavarias, and Carmen Trinidad were present as guests in the meeting. Father Intengan even graced the meeting with an opening prayer. Why were PDSP personalities present in the said Special En Banc meeting? What is their real purpose of their attending the meeting? When a former PDSP member called up Father Intengan asking who orchestrated the AO, Fr. Intengan replied that If there is anyone who could be asked about the AO, you should ask Mr. Luisito Lavarias and Ms. Carmen Trinidad. Not me, I dont have knowledge about the AO. In that statement of Father Intengan, we concluded that the PDSP people were the ones behind the drafting of the AO.

Of course, the BSF were surprised that such an AO that required participating basic sectors MUST be accredited by the Office of the President. Majority of the BSF members felt that the AO directly violated the principle of sectoral autonomy and independence enshrined in R.A. 8425 because it did not undergo proper consultations with the affected sectors. Thus, it came as no surprise when the BSF took a unified stand to ask for the recall the AO. While it is a fact that nobody could question the wisdom of the President in signing the AO, the BSF does not believe that PGMA could have formulated the said AO replete with grammatical errors. Furthermore, many of us have been working for the Presidents programs even before we became sectoral council members/representatives. We can say we have respectable working relationship with PGMA and cannot believe that we are being suddenly branded leftists and now being shunned from working for her programs.

The BSF can only suspect that the PDSP people were giving wrong advice to PGMA that some members of the basic sectors are infiltrated by the enemy of the State. In that case, PGMA is wrongly made to believe that some members of the BS are still connected with the Communist Party of the Philippines, an organization which has in fact been legalized.
On 21 February 2008, Sec. Gonzales wrote DBM Sec. Andaya requesting release of Php 9,060,488.00 supposedly for the implementation of AO 187. An initial One Million was already released to NAPC. Why is Sec. Gonzales himself making the request and not the NAPC Lead Convenor? What is his real motive of meddling in the NAPC and BS internal affairs? If he advises PGMA on Civil Society Organization matters, then he has to have a correct analysis and good advice for PGMA on the real situation of the NAPC basic sectors.

Last Friday, 18 July 2008 on the assumption that our terms expired, Sec. Panganiban suspended all the rights and privileges of all 350 elected basic sectors council members; Urban Poor, Workers in the Informal Sector, Artisanal Fisherfolks, Farmers, Indigenous People, Children, Youth & Student, Senior Citizens, Cooperative, NGO, Women, Victim of Disasters and Calamities, Persons with Disabilities, and Formal Labor.

In his Memorandum sent to all NAPC partner agencies and NAPC Technical Action Officers, Sec Panganiban proclaimed to the bureaucracy and practically the whole country that the NAPC basic sector council members no longer exist! The message in our minds is very clear Sec. Panganiban informed and directed all NAPC partner agencies to refrain from working and partnering with us even in the most important implementation of government programs and joint advocacies.

In our minds, this is in bad faith to further immobilize the basic sector council members so that the PDSP "agenda" will be easier to push thru. Why did he direct our suspension from all rights and privileges before seeking advice of re-appointment from the Office of the President? Has he not heard of hold over capacity that no one can stop governance much more suspend people without due process. In fairness, most of us have gains in engaging with government. Paano ang mga magagandang joint projects and advocacies namin with government na ongoing at naka line-up? Ano ang mangyayari sa continuity ng mga agenda namin?

He talks of "our rights and privileges". We talk of our responsibilities and accountabilities to those who put us in office, our poor and marginalized constituents. We could have done definitely better if Sec. Panganiban and his NAPC cohorts allowed the proper use of NAPC funds and resources to support our mandate under RA 8425 the social reform agenda. We hear them say instructions from above (Sec Gonzales?) to insist on their focus on AO 187 and their more repressive implementing guidelines. Such a waste of people's money in the midst of very pervading poverty!

Secretaries Panganiban and Gonzales should stop playing politics and dirty tricks in the guise of protecting PGMA from the leftists and perceived political enemies. Immediately after the July 2007 Special NAPC en banc Meeting, Sec. Panganiban was outraged when speculations were spread that he and Asec Castillo were responsible for the controversial AO. During the BSF meeting last February, he admitted that he has not read beyond page 1 of the controversial AO 187 Implementing Guidelines.
We strongly believe that Sec. Gonzales deliberately misguided PGMA for the PDSP to dominate, control and command the NAPC BS council mechanisms as PDSPs political multi-sectoral base for the upcoming 2010 elections. Gonzales is leveraging his powerful post as NSC adviser for his partys interest and not for the interest of the marginalized sectors.

Definitely, the real intention of PDSP is to take over NAPC by putting all their people and allies using their executive privileges and connections in the Palace. Sec. Norberto Gonzales is taking the lead covert role of orchestrating the takeover of NAPC. They have found ready allies inside NAPC in the persons of Dept. of Agriculture Asec. Maya Santos, Asec. Dolly Castillo and Dir Joyce Del Rosario who have their own personal selfish interests. Despite COA Audit Reports on disallowances and abuses in NAPC financial transactions, they continue to flagrantly violate accounting and auditing laws, rules and regulations.

Now that these reports and other related graft and corruption charges against those NAPC Officials are in the hands of the Ombudsman, we earnestly hope and pray that equal application of the law and speedy dispensation of justice may prevail.

While castigating some Party List Representatives in Congress for allegedly diverting government resources in protest rallies and other anti government activities, Sec. Gonzales PDSP is dead set in making NAPC his front and milking cow for his partys machinery build up and political multi-sectoral base organizing for the upcoming 2010 elections.

Reliable information reached us that during the regional consultation and information drives on the AO 187 headed by Asec Santos, PDSP people actively made hakot of POs to said assemblies. NAPC hired mostly PDSP members as regional focal persons. Sec. Panganiban may have become a hostage or an active accomplice of this PDSP-mafia like political operations.

They have even managed to marginalize two NAPC Undersecretaries: Usec Susan Abaya, who tendered her resignation on July 2, 2007 and Usec Bernie Cruz who has been made a lame duck in the NAPC. Sec. Panganiban and DA Asec Santos have removed many NAPC middle level and rank and file employees and put in place new employees on contractual services to have control of everything including the use of NAPC resources.

Sec. Gonzales and his minions are behind the on-going demolition of the institutional partnership project of government and the basic sectors, arduously built over the past two decades, way before R.A. 8425, and given real shape in the NAPC mechanisms. In the guise of eliminating the "leftist" and alleged political enemies of PGMA and in the name of democracy, NAPC will be handed over on a silver platter to PDSP.

The historic gains of the basic sectors in their difficult struggle to advance and promote sectoral rights, welfare and interests should be spared from the political maneuverings of any one government official.

As a public officials, Gonzales and Panganiban are supposed to serve without discrimination or partisanship. They are a disservice to the basic sectors whose interests they are supposed to protect.

We call on PGMA, and our partners in government: STOP NORBERTO B. GONZALES AND HIS COHORTS BEFORE HE DOES FURTHER HARM AND DAMAGE.

Signed all Concerned Citizens and NAPC Basic Sector Council Members

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Latest Signatures

  • 13 December 201550. Joseph Marqueza
    crux of NAPC crucial to any anti-poverty commission is the mechanism of democratic participation!
  • 06 December 201549. Orly G
    I support this petition
  • 06 December 201548. Eduardo Fc
    I support this petition
  • 21 November 201547. Debbie C
    The Basic Sectors' is legitimate to uphold the principle of R.A 8425, it is imperative that without the partnership of various organizations who undergo a democratic selection process, the government especifically NAPCs aid for poverty programs will be ju
  • 10 November 201546. Aurelio R
    Pres., Pederasyong Bungang Sikap, Inc.
  • 05 November 201545. Rodrigo Olartej
    Kawawa naman c presidente napapirma ng AO#187 na di napag aralan ng maayos papano kasi gawa gawa lang ng iilang sipsip, ang galing naman ni PGMA napaniwala din naman agad, kaysa sa 14 basic sector na kung tutuusin supportive naman sana sa kanya lalong lal
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  • 02 January 201431. Hilsario Famadicoj
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  • 23 December 201330. Boy Olartej
    May maaasahan pa kaya tayo kay presidente kung mga galamay nya lamang ang kanyang pinaniniwalaan at pinagkakatiwalaan? well, sana hindi sya ipinapahamak ng kanyang mga inatasang kalihim, Tayo na lang ang bahala na sya dyan! total naiintindihan naman natin
  • 17 December 201329. Jeannette Rd
    Her Execellency PGMA, ang NAPC ay para sa mga tunay na batayang sektor at hindi para maging gatasan ng mga taong nagkukunwaring makamasa ngunit wala namang tunay na representasyon on the ground. Kung nais pa po ninyong tumatak sa sambayanang Pilipino ang
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    we strongly support this petition to make NAPC as a free and democratic commission far from the dictates of those oppurtunists PDSP elements trying to control it wittingly or unwittingly
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Jeanne EsparzaBy:
Justice, rights and public orderIn:
Petition target:
PRESIDENT GLORIA MACAPAGAL ARROYO

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