Peping and the Mitsubishops
- Boo Chanco (The Philippine Star) - February 23, 2015 - 12:00am

Sobrang apog! As the Jews would say it, such chutzpah! That’s the reaction a lot of people had when Mr. and Mrs. Peping Cojuangco and some of the Arroyo regime’s Mitsubishops, called for P-Noy to step down and allow a transition committee to take over the country. Of course the so-called transition committee is nothing but a clerico-fascist junta of which they will be members of.

Former Tarlac Gov. Tingting Cojuangco said that her husband, Peping, who is P-Noy’s uncle, was able to convince Vice President Jojo Binay to form an advisory council in the event that P-Noy is forced to resign by a people power-like movement in the run-up to the 29th anniversary of the first People Power Revolution on Feb. 25. She said Binay gave the commitment in a meeting with her husband last week.

“He (Binay) did agree to an advisory council, like a Sukarno-guided government,” Tingting told members of the Capampangan in Media Inc. in a forum at the Holiday Inn at the Clark Freeport last Friday. According to Tingting, a post-Aquino council could be a “big council” which Binay would have to lead “whether people like him or not.”

Binay, however, through a spokesman denied Tingting’s claim. “The Vice President did not discuss the creation of a so-called advisory body with Mr. Peping Cojuangco or any political personality or group, nor does he intend to discuss this issue with any personality or group,” spokesperson Joey Salgado said. Either Binay or Tingting is telling a lie.

But maybe, blood is thicker than water. I suspect Peping Cojuangco, the President’s uncle, is doing P-Noy a favor by publicly calling on him to step down. If someone like Peping is negative about P-Noy, there must be something P-Noy is doing right.

Why is Peping and Tingting so furious with P-Noy? Maybe P-Noy kept the old Kamaganak Inc. that plagued his mother’s reign at a distance. If only P-Noy didn’t put his own KKK in power, ok na sana.

Then too, Peping Cojuangco must be nuts to think he can do a better job than P-Noy, no matter how low the bar has been set by his nephew.  Peping presided over the worse performance of our athletes in international competitions ever as chairman of the Philippine Olympic Committee.

 As for that presumptuous National Transformation Council led by the Mitsubishops of the Arroyo regime, it is a joke. Anyone who saw GMA’s National (In) Security Adviser on television talking about another people power, the kindest conclusion any reasonable person can have is that he must have smoked a prohibited weed that caused his hallucination.

A coup? Another people power? They must be joking or indulging in wishful thinking. P-Noy had been a mess in recent weeks but entrusting political power to this bunch of jokers would be infinitely worse. Our credibility as a nation would suffer greatly. Our positive credit rating will fall overnight.

We have 16 months to go before P-Noy bows out of office. We have less than a year before our attention focuses on the May election. Anyone who wants to hold power should use the remaining time to convince the rest of us that he is worthy.

Ok, some of them are saying our election is a farce and we need radical change in the way we select our leaders. There may be some truth to that, but what makes this bunch of discredited old politicians and their Mitsubishops think they should be allowed a short cut to power? Sinuswerte sila?

I can at least understand the extreme left when they call for P-Noy to step down. They want a power vacuum they can take advantage of to stage a power grab. They are organized for something like that, specially if things happen via a so-called people power mass action.

But Peping and the Mitsubishops? Their ability to inspire a People Power revolt strong enough to oust P-Noy is doubtful. Our Armed Forces and the PNP are too sophisticated to believe the delusion this bunch constitutes the nation’s salvation.

We are mad about how P-Noy handled himself in the Mamasapano affair. But even that is not enough to take the risk of a drastic leadership change that would put Peping and the Mitsubishops in power. For all his personal faults, P-Noy is still our best bet for a peaceful transition to the next president.

P-Noy may not be the main reason why our economy is on an upswing. But the fact that our economy is now credible in the international stage means we have to avoid political risks that will bring it down overnight.

Besides, we also must learn from the lessons of the first EDSA. It was hijacked by the likes of Peping together with the same old oligarchic elite and Tita Cory allowed it to happen. Forget whatever lofty motives the first People Power event may have had at the start.

As we celebrate almost three decades since the EDSA People Power movement, we simply must say never again. And never again not just to a dictatorship like Marcos, but to being misled by false prophets riding on people power.

It is funny how this so-called National Transformation Council can demand that the whole government step down in order for the country to transform through a new and fresh start. Who do they think they are?

With Peping and the Mitsubishops at its helm, we cannot expect anything new or fresh. They can only offer a throwback to the bad old days. That will delight my friends in the extreme left because this will usher a revolutionary situation Joema had long been dreaming of.

Ironically, it is Bongbong Marcos who is saying P-Noy should step up, not step down in the light of Mamasapano. Bad as P-Noy may be now, the alternative is far worse in a short cut to power that would install a clerico-fascist junta. Work for a worthy successor to P-Noy in next year’s election and then maybe we can talk constitutional change thereafter.

MRT3 and Sec. Aberya

Things are coming to a point when DOTC can no longer kick the can down the road on MRT3. Everyday, the question is not whether there will be an “aberya” but how many.

There are suggestions to stop MRT3 operations due to safety concerns. But how will the 600,000 plus MRT3 riders get to work or school? Imagine the mess on EDSA with even more cars.

DOTC Sec. Jun Aberya, I mean Abaya, looked nonchalant when he was interviewed about closing down MRT3. If we have to do it, we will do it, he said, “maski pa kami mabatikos.” Of course Aberya, I mean Abaya, does not ride the MRT.  The last time he did, he had an aide carry an umbrella to shield him from the sun.

The DOTC Secretary also admitted the Metro Pacific Group has submitted a proposal to upgrade and rehabilitate the country’s most congested railway system for P23.3 billion ($524 million). Under MPIC’s proposal, it absorbs market risk, while the government issues no guarantee. A fare rate similar to the EDSA buses will be imposed.

However, Abaya said that the government is not keen on accepting an unsolicited proposal. Abaya still wants to buy out MRT3 and he said funding is not a problem. Furthermore, Abaya will have to deal with law suits from MRTC unless he sits down with them to discuss exit strategy.

If Abaya’s fear with an unsolicited proposal is because it may not be seen as open enough, maybe he can negotiate to allow a Swiss challenge. By this time, MPIC is so used to government imposing Swiss challenge on their projects anyway.

That’s also what DOTC should do with San Miguel’s offer to build the new international airport. Rejecting the offer because it is an unsolicited bid doesn’t make sense unless you are a congressman from Cavite who wants the new airport located at Sangley.

It is hard to believe funding is not a problem on the part of government for the MRT as well as the new airport. With just a year of productive time left before the Aquino administration signs off, there is some urgency in assuring the safety of MRT 3 passengers. Stopping operations, beyond a weekend, should be out of the question.

What I like with MPIC’s proposal is the single point of responsibility… just one group will be accountable for operations. Today, there is so much finger pointing and in the end, the interim maintenance provider can only say there is little they can do.

Unless they all sit down and discuss how to move forward, Sec. Abaya may just as well change his name to Aberya because that’s what can be expected every day from now on.

Boo Chanco’s e-mail address is Follow him on Twitter @boochanco


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