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Graft and corruption still foremost election issue

01:14 AM July 21, 2015

WITH THE 2016 presidential election in the offing, it’s high time the people set the main issue. Like it was in the 2010 national polls, the foremost thing to be tackled is still graft and corruption. Why?

Because corruption is intertwined with poverty. These twin problems are inseparable. As long as our country is saddled with cases of irregularities, there is no way to free the people out of the quagmire of economic deprivation.

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We have witnessed how greedy officials milked the government treasury dry; as a result, programs and projects, designed to alleviate the pitiful condition of the poor, were left unimplemented. Instead, huge chunks of public funds went to the pockets of the few who have no regard for the people’s welfare.

In this connection, it is imperative that we look closely into the would-be candidates’ stand on various issues related to corruption: Do they support the much-desired, long-clamored-for freedom of information law? Have they made public their thoughts about transparency in government deals, transactions and expenditures? How about on the accountability of both elected and appointed public officials? Is their record unblemished as far as financial matters are concerned? What are their specific plans for the uplift of the living conditions of the Filipino masses?

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This early, these and other things pertaining to good governance should be carefully considered in making our decision on “judgment day.” Failure to do so will mean a return of the reign of greed in our country, like what happened in at least two past regimes. Never again!

—EUSEBIO S. SAN DIEGO, founder, Kaguro, and former president, Quezon City Public School Teachers Association, essandiego@ymail.com

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