Dec 1, 2005

 

The banner "Erap acceptable to Left" is wrong

I thought it was the sickest joke of the year -- imagine one of the leaders of the People Power 2 movement and consistent advocate of a Transition Council as replacement to the Arroyo presidency now reportedly open to an Estrada presidency Part 2. Expectedly, those who have following the Left or maliciously waiting for any chance to pounce on activists have been having a field day since the Manila Times published an erroneous headline the other about Bayan Muna Rep. Satur Ocampo's openness to a restoration of Joseph Estrada to the presidency.

[Background: Ka Satur, himself a Manila Times veteran of 10 years prior to his joining the underground anti-Marcos resistance, accepted an invitation from the newspaper's current publisher for a roundtable discussion with editors and reporters. After two postponements due to the continuing spate of political killings, the encounter finally happened. Which resulted in the controversial and flatly wrong banner story.]

For all and sundry, here is Ka Satur's clear, self-explanatory reaction to the Manila Times story:

Bayan Muna is for Transition Council,not Estrada restoration
By Rep. Satur C. Ocampo
Partylist Representative and Party President
Bayan Muna

I categorically deny ever supporting an Estrada restoration as an alternative to the illegitimate Arroyo presidency. Bayan Muna and its allied parties (Anakpawis, Gabriela, Anak ng Bayan, Migrante and Suara Bangsamoro) are united in the proposal for a Transition Council to take over in the event that Arroyo is removed from MalacaƱang.

I issue this clarification in the light of misinterpretations of my remarks in a roundtable discussion with Manila Times editors and reporters. What I said as there is no doubt that among the major political forces, the Estradas still command a strong following. And that our experience in joint activities, the Estrada forces have beendelivering on their commitments.

What Bayan Muna has clearly proposed is for the anti-Arroyo movement and the various sectors to first forge a consensus on a program of reform and the process of forming the Transition Council. The Transition Council shall pave the way for credible elections and implement "doable" socioeconomic and political reforms in six months to one year.

All the significant anti-Arroyo forces that commit to pursue the program for reforms would have a role in the Transition Council. Bayan Muna is in no position to stop any significant anti-Arroyo political force from joining such a council.

For Bayan Muna and our allied parties, what is important is to ensure that workers, farmers, the youth, women and other basic sectors and middle forces be adequately represented in the council. [end]
While we fully respect The Manila Times and its editorial prerogatives, methinks (and our media friends would most probably support me on this) that Bayan Muna and the Left in general have been clear and consistent in proposing a Transition Council as replacement to Arroyo.

I could now imagine new "commentary" pieces from the usual cast of characters, mostly unrepentant apologists of our rotten system and professional anti-communists who relish and have this avowed commitment to mislead the public with their McCarthyist diatribes. Expect them to churn out the most unfair and one-sided reactions with nary an effort to seek out Ka Satur or to check the veracity of the story they are commenting on. They don't care if they got the facts right. They just want to hit the Left black and blue, to the merriment of the terrorist thugs who have been having their own field day badmouthing and killing activists.

This is to differentiate the reactions of those who have known Ka Satur personally or as an activist leader, those who have supported and continue to support the Left, and our many allies and friends across many issues. Their reactions may range from shock and awe to being downright pissed off but we are sure that they would be open to clarifications or would seek out Ka Satur or the Bayan Muna for the complete story. There is no hate (as in murder-inducing, massacre-fomenting hate a la Gloria, Raul and Norberto) involved in their reactions.

More info on the Transition Council:
Bayan Muna flyer (PDF file)
Let's give Transition Council, not GMA, a chance (Ka Satur)
Transition Council (Bayan chair Dr. Carol Pagaduan Araullo)
Transition Council, best replacement (Ka Satur)
No regret over people power (Ka Satur)
People Power and the Transition Council as Alternative (Gloria Step Down Movement)



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