P-Noy must have realized who the real threats are
AS I WRECK THIS CHAIR By William M. Esposo
The Philippine Star 2012-09-11
The recently manufactured controversy that eventually led to the announced transfer of DILG (Department of the Interior and Local Government) Undersecretary (Usec) Rico Puno to a still unspecified post must have alerted President Benigno S. Aquino III (P-Noy) on who his real friends are and those who can sink him, wittingly or unwittingly.

From Day 1 of his administration, Rico Puno had been the favorite target of Balay. They resented the assignment of Puno to be on top of the PNP (Philippine National Police) and so Puno had to live with attempts to make him responsible for the Luneta Hostage Tragedy and make him appear as a jueteng (illegal numbers game) protector, among other things.

In the Luneta Hostage Tragedy, P-Noy himself absolved Puno because they had been in constant communication during that crisis and the failure was really that of the officers on the ground. Puno was dutifully briefing P-Noy of the status of the crisis and relaying to the on-the-ground officers the president’s instructions.

In the case of being a jueteng protector, the source of the allegation — Retired Archbishop Oscar Cruz — is the least credible because he is Cory and a P-Noy hater as well as congenital basher. More importantly, Cruz was never able to substantiate any of his allegations against Puno. Puno could have sued Cruz for his unfounded allegations but it seems that he is kinder than those that have conspired to ruin him.

What’s shameful in all these attempts to get rid of Rico Puno was that they even attempted to blackmail P-Noy by planting the seeds of suspicion that Puno has a hold on the president, which is why P-Noy could not remove Puno. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo (GMA) might have been influenced by the blackmail but not P-Noy. Why should P-Noy fire a trusted friend when he knows that this friend had done nothing wrong and that there were groups feeding the attacks against him?

This recently manufactured issue, which was exposed in my September 9 column, WHO WANTS TO LYNCH USEC RICO PUNO, might appear to have forced P-Noy to remove Puno. After all, in politics, even if you’ve done nothing wrong but have reached a very controversial position in the public mind — a transfer or a resignation is par for the course. Actually, what happened was that Puno was already set for a transfer even when Jesse Robredo was still alive. P-Noy decided to accelerate it to remove the controversy of the fictitious “break in” and “raid” on Robredo’s condo. It had become so ridiculous that Senator Miriam Santiago wanted to get into the act and investigate the “break in” that never happened.

Communications Secretary Sonny Coloma placed this issue in its proper perspective in yesterday’s ANC interview with Miss Pinky Webb. Sonny confirmed that: “He (Puno) was ordered by the president to do a lockdown of the office (of Robredo).” As subsequently revealed, the matter of also securing papers at Robredo’s condo was relayed to Puno by the Chief PNP and so he went there along with some of Robredo’s aides.

The timeline of this event is quite simple to follow but the planted seeds of suspicion poisoned several minds by injecting so many insinuations about the motives of Puno. Rico Puno doesn’t stink, as he has been made to smell. It’s the trash level of journalism that was so thick with unfounded speculations that really stinks. It’s this kind of journalism that brings our country down, perpetuating the information gap, keeping many Filipinos ill-informed and showbiz and scandal addicted.

Can you imagine — they even insinuated that the Robredo crash could have been the result of a conspiracy. Who else do you think would be the natural suspect in this conspiracy theory? How could anyone plan a plane crash when it was Jesse’s last minute decision to take that aircraft?
A Balay watcher, Inquirer’s Conrad de Quiros, has written in his column that he suspected that Balay was out to control this presidency. The assaults on non-Balay members of the cabinet would tend to support Conrad’s suspicion. The attacks on Executive Secretary Jojo Ochoa have been relentless and nothing was ever proved. A reliable tip coming from a person in the inner circle of power revealed that the next likely targets after Puno would be the expected new PNP Chief, Allan Purisima, Defense Secretary Volts Gazmin and still on top of the agenda — Executive Secretary Jojo Ochoa.

Jojo Ochoa and Volts Gazmin are totally loyal to P-Noy and so why should they be targeted? Whose administration is this anyway? People shouldn’t attempt to assume posts that the voters didn’t elect them to perform. There’s a criminal offense called usurpation of power and authority.

P-Noy should watch very carefully those people around him whose agenda extends beyond 2016. Playing their post-2016 agenda could derail the reforms that he wants to leave as his legacy to the Filipino people. There’s only one contract with the Filipino and that’s this presidency. If this presidency succeeds, then the 2016 goal will be easy to attain. If this presidency fails, they can all kiss 2016 goodbye.

* * *

Shakespeare: “Madness in great ones must not unwatched go.” 

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Election lawyer: PCOS critics should put up or shut up

All Excited by Pope Francis

A great disservice to P-Noy

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