Freedom of Information (FOI) Bill another casualty of the Noynoy Aquino administration

We recall back when President Benigno Simeon ‘BS’ Aquino III was in campaign mode (as if the President ever got over such an operating mode) that the President reportedly put up the Freedom of Information (FOI) Bill as an absolute priority of his administration…

Presidential frontrunner Sen. Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III said last Sunday that the Freedom of Information bill — a landmark piece of legislation that will lift the shroud of secrecy over government transactions and data — will be a priority of his administration.

This was after Congress adjourned sine die last Friday without the bill’s ratification by the House of Representatives due to lack of quorum.

Asked in an ambush interview if he would prioritize the Freedom of Information bill once he assumes office, Aquino categorically said, “Yes.”

The FOI Bill will have enshrined in Philippine Law the “the right of the people to information on matters of public concern, and adopts and implements a policy of full public disclosure of all its transactions involving public interest.” It will also have assured penalisation of any public official who within the required period fails to comply to legitimate requests for qualified information under the Act.

But as far as priorities go, President BS Aquino obviously had other things in mind — particularly those that are more clearly aligned with the singular mission of his presidency, which is to secure Uncle Peping’s family jewels — the vast Hacienda Luisita estate in Tarlac — from subjection to agrarian reform. The key objective to take down in this mission was then Supreme Court Chief Justice Renato Corona who many Aquino allies saw as the primary roadblock in the road to securing the family estate. With Malacañang’s saturation drive against Corona taking up practically all of the first half of 2012 serving as a backdrop, BS Aquino’s presidential attention to the hapless FOI bill looked utterly lame

In January 2012, at the height of the Corona impeachment trial, [President BS Aquino] all too suddenly endorsed the bill, albeit in a few perfunctory press statements only. But in the next eight months, nothing more was heard from him by way of real proof of endorsement of the bill.

The President’s Liberal Party allies in the House, led by Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr. and Majority Leader Neptali Gonzalez III, did not move either. They neither pushed nor nudged the bill to fruition. Evardone did not call committee hearings until today.

Contrast this to the robust presidential resolve exhibited by BS Aquino when he personally oversaw the railroading of a sloppily-written impeachment complaint versus then Chief Justice Corona through Philippine Congress, even leveraging his fury against the entire Lower House practically all of the required number of whose members complied, tails between their legs…

[House Speaker Feliciano] Belmonte and another Liberal Party stalwart, Cavite Representative Joseph E.A. Abaya, revealed that a “furious” President Aquino wanted a “fast” impeachment against Corona after he and seven other Arroyo appointees had issued a temporary restraining order (TRO) to block the travel ban against Arroyo.

Contrast this presidential resolve when it comes to feudal clan matters to the limpdicked resolve when it comes to the interests of the general public and we will get a good handle on the true priorities of Philippine President BS Aquino.

* * *

So we must ask ourselves

Will the forces of “freedom” prevail in this virtually-lost cause?

Will the powers-that-be succumb to the hapless cries of outrage of their “Boss”?

Is the FOI Bill dead?

Does the Filipino voter really care?

As usual: Abangan ang susunod na kabanata… Same Bat time, same Bat channel…

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Post Author: benign0

benign0 is the Webmaster of GetRealPhilippines.com.

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24 Comments on "Freedom of Information (FOI) Bill another casualty of the Noynoy Aquino administration"

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Despair
Member

Yes, a generic Filipino voter REALLY doesn’t give a shat about anything FOI. They are all contented with watching crappy variety shows and some news programs that revere the country’s crappiest president.

God help this country.

Libertas
Guest

FoI was always the big aquino campaign lie.
Clearly he and his pork loving sycophants have so much to hide that it will never be passed.
Those who have sabotaged it, have as much as admitted their guilt and corruption.
Such hypocrites should be hounded out of office for breach of trust and blatant lies.
Aquino is a walking disaster and a poor apology for a leader.

MidwayHaven
Guest

Oh, please. He’s already almost three years into his mandate, but he couldn’t prioritize one of his PRIORITY platforms. Saying that he’s not yet finished with his term only reinforces his lame duck status.

Gogs
Member
Jerwin, What is it to you??? He made a promise that 2 1/2 years later he has not fulfilled. I thought he ran on platform of eliminating corruption and poverty. He seems more on track of eliminating websites. When the guy made the “L” sign in his campaign it stood for Loser and Liar. Sorry maybe you are the type who admires a head of state that enjoys making fun of disabled, sickly women. If so I am sorry I offended your sensibities. What I think you are saying is you board a bus in Pampanga at 10 AM that… Read more »
aris
Guest
Will the forces of “freedom” prevail in this virtually-lost cause? Yes, it will have to start in our individual families. If we eliminate apathy within then it will eventually infect others. Will the powers-that-be succumb to the hapless cries of outrage of their “Boss”? Of course they won’t easily but we should realize that they are only in power because we had put them there. We should have a website that have all the names and faces of these politicians where we keep tabs on their activities so come election time we can elect the ones who gives a shit… Read more »
Thomas Jefferson
Guest

Campaign promises are made to be broken. From the Manila Standard:

http://www.manilastandardtoday.com/2012/11/14/transparent-as-mud/

Libertas
Guest

P-noy and the government have created an omnishambles, ably assisted by the old men and old guard in the senate and congress, ensuring a continual cycle of failures and incompetence.

Thomas Jefferson
Guest
I think it is about time to warn the thinkers among you. The possibility of a smoldering social volcano slowly building a bulge and blowing up within BS Aquino’s watch is a worst case scenario.Systemic corruption continues, incompetence rules the day, automated cheating has been predicted this coming elections, crime is up and investments are down. So many problems while time is slowly running out. The Islamofascist MILF/bangsamoro and their formal alliance with the CPP-NPA-NDF is a clear and present danger. The phony peace is apparent as the ceasefire violations on the part of the Moro and its allies were… Read more »
Libertas
Guest

“Omnishambles” has been named word of the year by the Oxford
English Dictionary.
meaning – a situation which is shambolic and disorderly from every possible angle.

Sottoshambles – a bad thing made worse through crass stupidity

Aquinoshambles – creating chaos through avoidance of responsibility – (allied to noynoying)

Libertas
Guest

Google today said that a philippine city mayor requested them to take down 5 blogs which were critical of him. They refused.
Maybe he will take his annoyance out on facebook users instead

Hyden Toro
Guest

FOI Bill will surely OPEN a Can of Worms on these political leaders. We don’t want to smell their stinks, do you? Or see some slithery things crawling all over the place.

Libertas
Guest

15,000 duped by aman pyramid scam

15 million conned by aquino campaign lies

Only in the philippines could so many be conned by so few for so long – and accept it!
Naive, or just subservient.

Libertas
Guest

“Most people do not really want freedom, because freedom involves responsibility, and most people are frightened of responsibility.” – Sigmund Freud

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[…] the Freedom of Information (FOI) bill languishing in Congress, BS Aquino has effectively killed any semblance of government being more […]

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[…] you what they choose to” is what she told Schaap. Not unlike Candidate Noynoy Aquino in 2010 promising the Freedom of Information Bill  then in 2014 there is no sign of his former enthusiasm as well as no sign of the […]