In defense of Babes Singson
I write in defense of a good man, former public works secretary Rogelio “Babes” Singson.
To address the traffic hell that we face today through the Road Sharing Movement, I had the occasion to closely interact with then Secretary Singson. In the course of our cooperation, I saw in him a man of great integrity, diligence, humility, with a mind open to new ideas, and a passion to reform a notoriously corrupt government department.
I am saddened to see his name dragged into a mess by some local officials, Land Registration Authority personnel, and other racketeers who bilked government infrastructure funds through bogus right of way claims.
There is ample jurisprudence that says that a head of office can rely on the staff who work as his underlings. It is his fault that he relied on the certified land titles presented to him and presumed the good faith of official performance by his subordinates in far-flung Mindanao.
The Ombudsman must carefully sift through the evidence and bring to justice the culprits in this scam. I am confident that Singson will be cleared of wrongdoing.
That is the price of public service in this country. No matter how good one is, and how one tries to correct wrongs and fight corruption, often he ends up with harassment and wrongful cases. It is no wonder why good men and women shy away from government service. In their stead, the abusive, the corrupt and the arrogant take over.
Take heart and be strong, Mr. Singson. Those who know you know only too well that you are not capable of stealing even a single centavo. The wheels of justice turn very slowly in this country. But in the end, it will crush the corrupt and lift the good men. And you, Babes Singson, are a good man. Mabuhay ka!
TONY OPOSA JR., environmental lawyer
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