Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Ombudsman's anti-corruption record

Earlier, US Ambassador Kristie Kenny made a statement before the American Chamber of Commerce (and before other groups, as well) that one of the factors hampering the country's economic growth is corruption. This was met with frowns by Philippine government officials.

In response to Kenny's statement(s), Merceditas Gutierrez of the Office of the Ombudsman said that "The Office of the Ombudsman is consistent in its commitment to rid the government of corrupt officials by prosecuting those involvd in corrupt practices and by initiating reforms to ensure the speedy and fair disposition of cases."

To stress her point, she proudly reported that the Office of the Ombudsman was able to fire 23 erring public officials and suspended 33 others from government service in the past 15 months.

So, shall we say kudos?

First, does that include the fertilizer scam last 2004 elections? Does that also include the DepEd scandal which included Luz's dancing on the wire? And the Philhealth cards issue? How about the Road Users' Tax matter?

Second, does the figure on persons fired included Gloria in the Palace? Or that of her close allies?

Third, does the same also included the finding guilty or not guilty of the first family and their cahoots with regards the issue of jueteng and smuggling?

I don't think that Ms. Gutierrez's IQ is the same as that of another Gloria in the Palace's boy, Vidal Querol. And I am sure she understands that the issue is not about the figures. It's about "the who", lady. A thousand dilis is not always equal to a couple of large sharks....

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