President Benigno Aquino’s (PNoy) ‘tuwid na daan’ (straight path) advocacy and his seemingly, if not frustratingly, inept handling of Oplan Exodus, where 44 elite PNP-SAF troopers were brutally slain, allegedly by the combined MILF and BIFF rebel forces, while on a covert mission to capture, dead or alive, international terrorist Zulkifli bin Hir alias Marwan and his bomb-maker Moro cohort Basit Usman, only shows the contrasting images of a man in dilemma as he leaves office in 2016.
PNoy’s dilemma could come from the fact that his straight path advocacy, which he made the center piece of his administration, and which has earned him credits, here and abroad, for his dogged determination to stump graft and corrupt practices in the country, may be derailed once he leaves office, and, worst still, that as he steps down, he will be haunted by the guilt that if not for his inept handling of Oplan Exodus, he would not have been blamed, as he is today, for the bloody fate of the Fallen 44.
We see some glimmer of hope for the country today, and while PNoy is still in office, that the Sandiganbayan (the country’s graft court) has continued to keep the notorious senators involved in the scandalous pork barrel scam and indicted for plunder in custody, even if one is under hospital arrest.
Together with the alleged scam brain, Janet Napoles, their bank accounts and other assets are freeze, and, lately, the Sandiganbayan Fifth Division denied Sen. Jinggoy Estrada’s motion for a three-hour birthday furlough on Tuesday, February 17.
Somehow this glimmer of hope that has enliven many Filipinos seems to be fading simply because of PNoy’s credulousness in believing that those he trust most have the monopoly of good understanding, counseling and judgment.
Between PNoy and his overly trusted friend and protégé, former PNP chief Alan Purisima, nobody else knew what exactly was to happen in Mamasapano, Maguindanao, except SAF commander Director Getulio Napeñas, who probably thought both Purisima and PNoy would be doing the coordinating functions with the military, in case assistance was needed, as he was not even made to divulge the covert mission to his superiors in the chain-of-command until ‘time on target’ or when they police commandos were already in harms way.
After the various investigations conducted over the Mamasapano massacre shall have been over, we would have learn nothing new anymore than what we already know, except being given the assurance perhaps that it will not happen again, ever.
Well and good.
But who would carry on the fight against corruption and make the straight path advocacy sustainable? PNoy had the moral authority to declare war against graft and corruption in government because he never got involved in corrupt practices during his years serving the government.
Would Vice President Jejomar Binay, who continues to lead in the 2016 presidential polls, have the same moral authority to fight corruption, when he himself is scandalously and deeply mired in charges of corrupt practices?
Because PNoy could not trust Interior Secretary Mar Roxas during the activation of Oplan Exodus, does this mean that he favors Binay, who continues to be in his cabinet, despite his questionable character, as the one to succeed him? Note that Binay, like Purisima, continues to have the trust and confidence of PNoy.
The country and the Filipinos deserve a better president, and unless we, collectively, make the right choice, I don’t see hope for this country to progress after PNoy – not even a glimmer.