Sunday, February 10, 2008

Corruption scandal may spark unrest

After his ouster from the House Speakership, former Pangasinan Rep. Jose de Venecia is expected to divulge more corruption in government, a normal reaction from anybody who has kept mum on sensitive issues that he felt could hurt the Arroyo Administration. Not anymore.

After a long silence, he is prepared this time to unleash all these illegal transactions in government, especially those that involved the First Couple. De Venecia's determination to expose anomalous transactions in government was sparked by the coming into light of Rodolfo Lozada, president of Philippine Forest Corporation and technical consultant on the NBN-ZTE broadband project, allegations that former Commission on Elections chair Benjamin Abalos, along with the First Gentleman, had masterminded the overpricing of the ZTE broadband deal.

One of the bombshells that exploded during a privilege speech was the rigging of election results in 2004, which he said took place inside the Batasang Pambansa compound in Quezon City. But he did not elaborate further as to how the ballot boxes were tampered to make it appear that President Arroyo won the elections by as much votes. However, he promised to reveal the secrets at some other times.

Sounds strange that some government officials holding sensitive positions in government, especially those who were involved in some wrong-doings in government, keep these secrets to themselves until such time when there is a need to reveal them. A normal practice or a code of silence among government officials, who don't want to implicate or tarnish the good image of those sitting at the throne of power. But there is a saying that "If there is smoke, there is surely fire underneath it." Which is true nowadays and the NBN-ZTE anomalous deal is one of them.

Thanked God, there are still some Filipinos whose principles and honesty are intact. Otherwise, nobody would take the courage to expose all these corruption scandals now plaguing the country, a feat that is making the country notorious in terms of graft and corruption. What is ironical, however, is that some government officials only voice out what they knew after their feelings or egos are hurt. Such that the political maneuverings at the Lower House is one good example, a secret handiwork of the Arroyo brothers in that bastion of power who allegedly shelled out huge amount of cash to buy the votes in favor of Rep. Prospero Nograles. Sometimes, it is hard to trust the words of friends until it's too late to cry.

In politics, there is no permanent friends, only permanent interests. This is what is currently happening anywhere in the world. There's no doubt about it. Trust is what matters in Congress. When the congressmen felt that the House Speaker's leadership was a little bit tarnished owing to the recent whistle-blowing of Joey de Venecia on the ZTE multi-million scandal, some of them went ahead with the manipulation for the Speaker's ouster in retaliation to his son's implication of the First Gentleman's name in the scandal.

Everybody knows that there are more JVDs inside the government who are just waiting for the right time to unleash their bombshells in public. Only time can tell as to when more of these are expected to explode.

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