Cardinal Vidal in EDSA history 29 years ago

SHOOTING STRAIGHT - Bobit S. Avila - The Philippine Star

If the National Transformation Council (NTC) led by his eminence Ricardo Cardinal Vidal has called for the Aquino regime to step down, it is only classic Cardinal Vidal… after all history has recorded that Cardinal Vidal played a key role in the EDSA Revolt 29 years ago. Indeed, exactly 29 years ago, the United Nationalist Democratic Organization (UNIDO) held a massive protest rally at the Fuente Osmeña with Presidential guest candidate Corazon C. Aquino, widow of the late Sen. Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino Jr. and her vice-presidential candidate Salvador “Doy” Laurel explaining to the Cebuanos how Pres. Ferdinand E. Marcos cheated in the snap elections.

But suddenly their speeches were cut short because of events unfolding in Manila. I was with the group of Doy Laurel as the UNIDO was the only political party that I ever joined. It was around 5 p.m. when the rally abruptly ended and those of us close to Vice Pres. Laurel learned through the telephone that then Defense Sec. Juan Ponce Enrile and Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Vice-Chief of Staff Gen. Fidel V. Ramos apparently decided to hold out in Camp Crame and at 6:30 p.m., they held a presscon to announce that they had resigned from their positions in the Marcos Cabinet.

Allow me to reprint what is written in Wikipedia about the People’s Power Revolution in EDSA.

“Because of reports of alleged fraud, the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) through Ricardo Cardinal Vidal issued a statement condemning the elections. The United States Senate also passed a resolution stating the same condemnation. US president Ronald Reagan issued a statement calling the fraud reports as ‘disturbing.’

“Cardinal Vidal, after the result of the snap election, issued a declaration in lieu of the Philippine Church hierarchy stating ‘a government does not of itself freely correct the evil it has inflicted on the people then it is our serious moral obligation as a people to make it do so.’ The declaration also asked ‘every loyal member of the Church, every community of the faithful, to form their judgment about the February 7 polls’ and told all the Filipinos, ‘It is the time to speak up. Now is the time to repair the wrong.         

“The wrong was systematically organized. So must its correction be. But as in the election itself, that depends fully on the people; on what they are willing and ready to do.’ After Cardinal Vidal’s condemnation of the snap election’s fraudulent result, a message was aired over Radio Veritas at around 9 p.m., Cardinal Sin exhorted Filipinos in the capital to aid rebel leaders by going to the section of EDSA between Camp Crame and Aguinaldo and giving emotional support, food and other supplies. For many this seemed an unwise decision since civilians would not stand a chance against a dispersal by government troops. Many people, especially priests and nuns, still trooped to EDSA.”

So is it wrong for the NTC to demand for the Aquino regime to step down? Well for sure, the NTC is not alone. No less than Presidential uncle former Rep. Jose “Peping” Cojuangco, husband of former Governor Margarita “Ting Ting Cojuangco is also asking the President to step down. I got it from former Defense Secretary Norberto Gonzalez himself that the NTC was approached by Peping Cojuangco, but was politely refused. Yet during the Cebu NTC Assembly last Oct. 1, Ting Ting Cojuangco was there to show her support even if she was not admitted to the NTC.

Last Sunday we learned that Justice Secretary Leila de Lima warned the NTC, calling it a loose grouping of disgruntled Arroyo allies, whose acts already constitute conspiracy or proposal to commit rebellion against the government. She warned the NTC that she will nor relent in applying the full force of the law against them in order to protect the people and the state from an unconstitutional and illegal power grab.

What’s wrong with Sec. de Lima and why is she resorting to name-calling? Before she opens her mouth, she should look at herself first before she points fingers at groups who are fed up with the incompetence of her boss. Apparently incompetence is prevalent within the Aquino Cabinet. Just look at the Metro Rail Transit (MRT) or the highly disturbing 8-hour brownouts happening not only in Metro Manila, but also in Cebu! We have a litany of Aquino’s incompetence, but we’ll do that later.

Tomorrow is exactly a month when that disastrous Oplan Wolverine/Exodus commenced to search for Zulkifli Bin Hir a.k.a Marwan in Mamasapano, Maguindanao, which resulted in the brutal killing of 44 Special Action Force (SAF) policemen. Sec. de Lima was tasked by P-Noy to get into the bottom of this massacre, but like all people beholden to the President, she is dilly-dallying this to the utter frustration of the Filipino people, who are angered that it’s nearly a month since that disastrous massacre in Mamasapano and all Sec. De Lima could do is warn the NTC? De Lima should quit because she’s the wrong person to investigate this massacre!

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