Cash gifts bought votes

Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile’s evenhandedness and deft management of Chief Justice Renato Corona’s impeachment trial lent great credence to that often-dramatic spectacle—one replete with heated arguments and even wheelchair theatrics. Enrile’s performance even had a redemptive effect on his reputation and made people more tolerant of his revisionist account of martial law.

However, less than a year since the removal of Corona, the chief presiding officer of that trial is now himself embroiled in a controversy involving the misuse of maintenance and other operating expenses savings. After removing a chief justice for not being wholly truthful in declaring his financials—thus implying he unjustly enriched himself while in office—here is the Senate President using public funds to reward favored allies with cash gifts.

One cannot help but feel disappointed and betrayed by this development. Instead of making inroads in our fight against graft and corruption, it seems that our efforts have sputtered or even regressed. How else can we explain such unconscionable use of public funds when we are sorely lacking in basic education, infrastructure and national defense? What must the victims of the latest natural disaster be thinking when the senators are bickering over the unequal division of cash gifts?

If the immorality and corruption of the situation was not apparent before, it certainly is now with the vote of confidence to retain Senator Enrile as Senate President. Coming on the heels of the distribution of disproportionate amounts to allied majority members, it seems that the vote of confidence was bought and paid for by our taxes. If that does not constitute bribery and misuse of public funds, then our country is really doomed.

A ready solution is another very public and dramatic removal from office. After all, we are their bosses.



Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter

Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Short URL: http://opinion.inquirer.net/?p=45807

Tags: betrayal , cash gifts , Juan Ponce Enrile , letters , Senate , vote buying

Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94


  • 43 out of 414 Etihad passengers yet to be found, tested for MERS-CoV – Palace
  • Maid confesses in killing of 2 and stabbing of employer in Laguna
  • N. Korea finally offers condolences over ferry tragedy
  • 16 CADPI sugar refinery workers now out of danger after toxic shower in Batangas
  • PNP denies Purisima’s involvement in questionable deal with courier firm
  • Sports

  • UP nips St. Benilde; Adamson blasts RTU in Filoil women’s caging
  • Kevin Garnett responds to Raptors’ GM F word
  • Albert Pujols hits 500th HR of major league career
  • UST posts twin kill in Filoil pre-season cup opening day
  • Wizards beat Bulls in OT to take 2-0 series lead
  • Lifestyle

  • Entering the monkhood a rite of passage
  • Haneda International Airport: A destination on its own
  • Wanted: Beauty queen with a heart that beats for the environment
  • Kim Atienza: At home with art and design
  • Life lessons I want to teach my son
  • Entertainment

  • Bollywood Oscars, film stars come to Florida
  • Ex-Fox exec denies allegations in sex abuse suit
  • Kris Aquino backtracks, says Herbert Bautista and her are ‘best friends’
  • Summer preview: Chris Pratt enters a new ‘Galaxy’
  • Bon Jovi helps open low-income housing in US
  • Business

  • SM to rebuild Tacloban hospital
  • PSEi slips after 4-day rally
  • Toyota sells 2.58 million vehicles, outselling GM
  • McDonald’s 1Q profit slips as US sales decline
  • SEC approves SM’s P15B retail bond offer
  • Technology

  • ‘Unlimited’ Internet promos not really limitless; lawmakers call for probe
  • Viber releases new design for iPhone, comes to Blackberry 10 for the first time
  • Engineers create a world of difference
  • Bam Aquino becomes Master Splinter’s son after Wiki hack
  • Mark Caguioa lambasts Ginebra teammates on Twitter
  • Opinion

  • One-dimensional diplomacy: A cost-benefit analysis of Manila’s security deal with Washington
  • No ordinary illness
  • Reforest mountains with fire trees and their kind
  • Day of the Earth
  • When will Chinese firm deliver new coaches?
  • Global Nation

  • Filipinos coming home from Mideast must obtain MERS clearance – DOH
  • US Secret Service in Manila ahead of Obama visit
  • Palace thanks Estrada for successful HK mission
  • Hong Kong accepts PH apology; sanctions also lifted
  • China won’t budge, wants PH gov’t to apologize to HK
  • Marketplace