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Opinion

Our Philippine democracy

READER’S VIEWS - The Freeman

It has been our custom and tradition since we Filipinos were born in our beloved country, the Philippines - an island full of beautiful scenery, in which plenty of foreign tourists and travelers contribute to the coffers of our democratic government. But sad to say, out of nowhere, that income has gone with the wind because of the abuse of democracy and corruption.

In this regard, allow me to quote Section 4 and a portion of Section 6, Article III of our 1987 Constitution (Bill of Rights), respectively: “No law shall be passed abridging the freedom of speech, of expression, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble and petition the government for redress of grievances.”, and “Neither shall the right to travel be impaired except in the interest of national security, public safety, or public health, as may be provided by law.” But when the pandemic struck in our native land, everything changed. The rule of law was modified or supplemented by executive orders and Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) rules and policies. Moreover, I can recall the time when martial law was declared by former dictator Ferdinand Marcos - how we easily forget, and now some would elect his son Bongbong Marcos (BBM).

The sacredness of our Constitution emanates from the sovereignty of the people - herein Philippine citizenry. However, when the West Philippine Sea was awarded to us by virtue of a 2016 arbitral ruling by a five-judge tribunal constituted under the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) in The Hague, it was only in paper, but no execution.

Now, with the siege undertaken by Russia on Ukraine, we cannot help but think of the possibility that China will invade our very own Philippines. As we all know, China is not governed by democracy, but of communism. So to the end, our democracy might die in which our forefathers shed their blood for generations to come supposedly for us to enjoy the freedom of a democratic government.

Henceforth, be that as it may, we will continue our struggle to defend our rights under our duly constituted authorities with hope that the next leader of our country this coming elections - whoever it will be, would be guided by the Holy Spirit, be guided by the emblem of a permanent structural form of government, and be guided to uphold democracy and human rights in order that the lives of every Filipino will be cherished, and that justice and equity take precedence.

Brad Pit A. Yap

Pooc, Talisay City, Cebu

DEMOCRACY

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