“Segundina, what is bribery? ” I texted my friend Gunding.
“Why, are you caught bribing a cop for a traffic violation?” She replied.
“No, I just want you define it for me. ” I texted back to tease her.
“I don’t know if you are one stupid and annoying woman disrupting my work or plain lazy nut. But here you read it, and don’t bother me again. Saksak mo kaya ‘to sa kokote mo nang tumalino ka! ” Her sour reply but with the definition of bribery.
“BRIBERY– The act or practice of giving or accepting a bribe; The process of giving or taking bribes (In some countries, bribery of a public official is a felony).”
“Thank you. So, my friend are you saying that the giver and the receiver of bribes are both involved in the commission of bribery? ” I texted her again.
“Did you not read it?” She sounded annoyed already.
“Just this one na lang my friend, do you think Pagcor Chairman Cristino “Bong” Naguiat’s alleged acceptance of free and accommodations from the Wynn Group, owners of a chain of casino hotels and gaming venues worldwide as reported constitute a criminal offense of bribery?”
“Anong pakialam ko diyan. Why don’t you ask Presidential Spokesman Edwin Lacierda. Or better go on a double date with PNoy and Grace, and Edwin and you. Why ask me, that’s the least of my concern right now with tons of paper work to do!!!”
Segundina is fuming mad already. I know it’s time to stop lest I’ll take the risk of losing our friendship.
But if I could only beg futher her honor’s indulgence (being a highly political minded individual who could spend with you the whole night just talking on political issues) then I could have asked her opinion why the Aquino’s administration is now being criticized for declaring earlier that there is nothing wrong for Philippine Gaming and Amusement Corp. (Pagcor) chairman Cristino Naguiat to receive free accommodations at a $6,000-a-night hotel room and other alleged perks from a Japanese billionaire. Presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said this is acceptable as long as Naguiat and other officials do not profit personally from these free accommodations.
So now, who could prevent somebody from perceiving that President Benigno Aquino lll (specially his critics and political enemies) of perceiving/believing that he is playing a double standard of morality in pursuing his presidential commitment of eliminating graft and corruption in the government under his policy banner daang matuwid.
Along this line, perhaps Segundina could have enlightened me too of my ignorance about “Noynoy’s KKK (Kaibigan, Kaklase, at Kabarilan) circle and what his political critics described as “two-faced” or different set of “justice.” And going back to Naguiat, I could have asked Segundina if the Pagcor’s Chairman is already absolved by Malacanang being one of the Kaklase of the president?
Sa totoo lang, with the on-going impeachment of Chief Justice Corona who frequently receives tirade from the president for not being morally fit to hold on to his position, one cannot help but ask if there are there sacred cows too in this administration as believed it existed too in the past administrations?
Probably appalled by the apparent absolution of the Pagcor’s chairman by Malacanang, economist Winnie Monsod and house deputy minority leader Mitos Magsaysay said in a television interview that President Aquino should have first ordered for an investigation into the matter rather than defending Naguiat right away.
While national surveys still boast on the popularity of the president, it is a fact also that many Filipinos are getting disenchanted with the president’s inabililty to control prices of fuel and basic commodities, adequately deal with poverty and unemployment, criminality, slow economic growth which the president said he only inherited from the past administration.
Kumambiyo ang Malacanang
Pagkatapos siya ay batikosin sa media, pinagpapaliwanag naman ngayon ni PNOY si Pagcor Chairman Cristino “Bong” Naguiat tungkol sa pagkakasangkot niya sa “allegations of bribery” laban sa isang gaming businessman na si Kazuo Okada kung saan ay sinasabi nilang tumanggap daw ito ng free hotel accomodation mula dito.
“There will be a formal process where he will be asked to explain. First hanapin muna natin ‘yung specific accusations then we will task him to explain himself with regards to the specific accusations, then the committee will determine whether or not there is an issue or no issue,” ang pahayag ng president.
“Everybody who has been proven to have done something that they shouldn’t have or neglected to do what they should has been meted appropriate sanctions,” dagdag pa nito.