e-Mandirigma Message – GMA RESIGN NOW!

Being a part of the e-Mandirigma mailing list, I received this email from Enteng Romano who was always an online visible figure in times when the country is in some crisis.

My fellow e-Mandirigmas,

Almost 60% of our countrymen believe GMA cheated in the last elections.

Yet, all we see is a lot of passionate and endless debates about confession, forgiveness, accountability, culpability, rule of law, moral ascendancy, lack of alternatives, and so on. And it will go on until one defining event similar to the non-opening of the envelope will spark another EDSA revolt. I fear that this time it may not be as bloodless, considering the hard lines people are taking. We are divided right down the middle.

Let us set aside for the moment GMA’s sincerity and the whole matter of forgiveness. It’s a complex exercise in theology and philosophy.

The moral view on the issue should be: “Now that GMA has admitted that she was the voice on the tape, it is time to dissect its contents to determine whether indeed it was a mere lapse of judgment, or there was actual cheating.” If there was cheating, then apology and forgiveness has no place – at least, at this time.

If you listen to the conversations or read the transcript of the tapes, you can only come to one conclusion. And if you consider the fact that GMA appointed Garcillano in spite of his notoriety as an “operator” (one who is known to engineer wide-scale cheating), you can only conclude that there was pre-meditated cheating. It is only those who do not want to see who cannot discern the obvious. And they will hide under the mantle of the rule of law, which requires proof beyond reasonable doubt, to protect a lie.

And yet, many of us are paralyzed into inaction, simply because we do not like the alternatives being peddled by the opposition, or too scared to gamble with Noli. We are all too willing to condone GMA’s iniquity, hoping against hope that she can weather the turmoil. We would much rather have a cheat who has proven credentials in governance, than risk the stewardship of the nation in the hands of novices like Noli or Susan, or worse – in the hands of a plunderer like Erap.

But if we look back to the experience of EDSA 1 &2, we know that GMA will have to go. sooner or later. All the requisite ingredients for her government’s collapse are now in place. With or without our involvement, the protest actions will continue to escalate until GMA steps down. It’s only a question of when and how.

How will all this play out? Here are the possible scenarios:

Extra-constitutional means (extreme):

1. Opposition-led people power prevails. Installs Susan, Erap, or anyone who will emerge as unifying leader of the revolt, as president, totally ignoring the constitution. The rule of succession does not apply in a revolt. The victor dictates who rules.

2. Military intervention, led by Abat or some other groups. Military junta takes over.

Extra-constitutional means (moderate):

3. GMA heeds “Resign All” call (very unlikely). Multi-sectoral caretaker government takes over and hopefully calls election immediately.

4. GMA calls a snap election (unlikely, but an option when she becomes desperate. At least, she has a chance of staying in power if she wins). Key issues here are constitutionality of the exercise and composition of Comelec. If GMA wins, charges of cheating will not die down. Susan or Erap can win.

Constitutional means:

5. Congress files impeachment, and senate starts impeachment proceedings. If found guilty, Noli takes over. If not guilty, will depend on how the process is played out. may lead to escalation of protests, and ultimately another EDSA revolt.

6. GMA resigns (either on her own volition, or forced by growing clamor, not necessarily on the scale of a people power), Noli takes over.

I’m sure many of you will argue that there is another scenario which I am deliberately ignoring – that of GMA rising above the current crisis. And that if we will only forgive her, put this issue behind us, and direct our energies towards building the nation instead of contributing to instability through these protests, then we will emerge a strong republic as she has envisioned.

Unfortunately, I think it’s foolish to hope that people will rally behind a leader who has lost her moral ascendancy. We are fortunate that selfish ambitions from among the opposition ranks have prevented them from unifying behind a single leader who can inspire the masses to revolt. But if the current political instability lingers on, they just might come to their senses.

GMA will have to go or be booted out. The only question that remains is whether we will participate in shaping the post-GMA government or let the Erap-led opposition decide it for us by default.

What do we do then? If not GMA staying on, what is the best scenario we should advocate?

We obviously do not want an opposition-led revolt or a military junta taking control. A snap election or a transition caretaker government seems appealing, and are in fact being advocated by moderates. But there are many constitutional entanglements that will require a broad-based consensus. I doubt if we can ever get all the contending parties to agree.

The truth commission being advocated by civil society groups will only delay the inevitable. If GMA is absolved by the commission, do you honestly think the opposition will accept the verdict and begin to scale down their protest actions? If found guilty, is GMA committed to step down? And where can you find people who will form part of the commission that will be acceptable to both administration and opposition?

So, it’s either impeachment or outright resignation of GMA. But that means Noli de Castro will be our next president – a prospect that’s scary, at best, and repugnant to many.

But then again, consider this. At least, Noli is not tainted (I don’t know of any serious scandal thrown against him), he is not beholden to the opposition (so he does not need to give concessions to them), he is immensely popular with the masses (enough to counter Erap’s appeal and even Susan’s attempt at doing a Cory, and neutralize any post-GMA initiatives to incite the masses to revolt). It’s also the most expedient and constitutionally unassailable.

True, he lacks the credentials and the experience. But so did Cory when she took office. We can just pray that he has the right heart and enough sense to surround himself with able and competent men.

If we do nothing, the political situation will continue to be volatile and it may lead to other scenarios far worse than having Noli as president.

My fellow e-Mandirigmas, IT IS TIME TO ACT NOW!

Up till now, GMA believes that all these noise and protests are coming from her political opponents bent on destabilizing her government. It is time to show her that there are many of us who will not stand for wrongdoing of such a scale as electoral cheating, even if the alternative is worse than the status quo.

Today, eLagda, together with other sectors who are committed to stand for what is right, will launch a new website – www.gmaRESIGNnow.com to serve as the voice of the moral majority of the Filipino people. We ask GMA to RESIGN NOW and let the constitutional process of succession take effect. I invite you to be part of the moral majority in this effort.

I encourage you to do the following:

1. Visit the website and register as a petitioner or register your organization as a supporter of the petition

2. Refer the website to friends and relatives; there’s an easy way to do this at the website. You can even personalize the referral message.

3. Start a signature campaign in your school, office, or neighborhood. You can download the signature sheet, tally sheet, and FAQ sheet from the website.

4. Disseminate this email to all your friends, relatives, and egroups.

It is time to tell GMA:

“We listened to the tapes. We read the transcript. We believe it was more than just a lapse of judgment. You cheated. You have lost your moral ascendancy and capacity to govern, much less transform this nation into a strong republic. The only decent thing to do is to RESIGN NOW. This may yet be your biggest contribution in making this republic a strong one.”

The sooner GMA steps down, the faster we will be back to normalcy and the task of rebuilding the nation. Let us all do our share. Let us not allow the Erap-led opposition to determine the fate of this nation by default.

God bless and God save the republic.


Reading comprehension of a bunch of English words with no graphs and formulas is not my cup of tea. And this is a long read and I have a lot to do. Although I skimmed through this very quickly… ganito lang ang dating sa akin…

Sure GMA did good as president… but she did cheat and forgiving should not be an option of else parang sira na ang mga priciples ng buhay, and mali nasusunod.

Pero teka, sino naman papalit? Since GMA still looks ok, pero mali talaga ginawa nya eh. So mamimili kayo, ang opposition that is known to be corrupt and is using famous public figures with celebrity appeal so their whole group can get all the power they wanted and go on with their said wrong doings… or go for the former Newscaster that does not know much but newscasting and mag reklamo as he usually does on TV to clean up the place since he used to be with the media.

If you put the corrupt in power, they will be stealing money. If you put Noli in there, he may not know how to run a country, but at least he is not related to the opposition and is not known to steal money from the government. He is still known to have a heart of a good man. So Noli seems to be the better evil ‘ika nga.

As Enteng placed the scenarios that can happen, and the best way to put Noli up there is to have GMA resign, so automatic Noli steps up as President instead of having some revolt and placing the corrupt people as leaders of the country.

That is the result of my reading comprehesion of the above text. Not necessarily my beliefs, may be right, may be wrong… I don’t know, but I think this message had to get out to more people so I posted it on my blog.

Benj Arriola

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