NO TO US BASES IN PH WINS STRAW VOTE AT TALAKAYAN SA FACLA, MANY FIL-AM LEADERS OPPOSE NAPOLES AS “STATE WITNESS.”
NEW FACLA NEWS
April 24, 2014
NO TO US BASES IN PH WINS STRAW VOTE AT TALAKAYAN SA FACLA,
MANY FIL-AM LEADERS OPPOSE NAPOLES AS “STATE WITNESS.”
Los Angeles—After a passionate debate among Filipino-leaders at the TALAKAYAN SA FACLA, the advocates against US bases in the Philippines won over those who said yes for US bases in the country.
On-line journalist Sid Balatan called for a straw vote just to gauge the feeling of the Filipino American leaders on the issue of the proposed new agreement on the access of the US military of the military bases in the Philippines.
The US bases were discussed due to the forthcoming visit of US President Barack Obama to the Philippines were the new Access Agreement of the US military to the Philippines will be signed.
No to US Bases in the Philippines
Dr. Leo Pandac, the president of the Historic Filipinotown Rotary Club and Alliance leader Art Garcia led the No votes while journalist Larry Pelayo and Dr. Vic Agatep led the Yes votes.
On the discussions, Dr. Marc Caratao and Agatep argued “ the US military presence and their bases will serve as a deterrent to China’s active threat to Philippine territories like the Kalayaan Islands”.
On the other hand, Lino Brutas of FRICALA said, “ China has the temerity to threaten the Philippines because they know that there are no US bases in the Philippines and we are weak.”
On the other hand, Dr. Orly Cagampan argued that the US bases would serve as a magnet to US enemies like China to conduct nuclear attack to the Philippines. Art Garcia on the other hand pointed out that, “Its time for the Philippines to be self-reliant and fend for itself and not be dependent on the American umbrella.
At the end of the discussion journalist Sid Balatan and Larry Pelayo remarked, “ that even in the United States, Filipinos are still nationalistic and are highly patriotic and do not want US bases in the homeland.”
NO to Napoles as a “State Witness”
On the subject of the DOJ proposal to make perceived PDAF scam mastermind Janet Napoles as a state witness, Historic Filipinotown Chamber of Commerce leader George Prado said, “the Philippine Justice system will suffer if Napoles becomes a state witness. Justice in the Philippines will lose its credibility.”
On the other hand, Marc Caratao questioned, “Does Napoles meets the requirements of a state witness? If the DOJ continues with its line of favoring Napoles I can say, they have a different agenda. Especially the 2016 elections is coming.
Meanwhile Dr. Cagampan questioned the list purportedly given by Napoles to former Senator Ping Lacson. He also said, “ we all know that Lacson is an” attack dog of Enrile “according to Senator Miriam Defensor- Santiago, why will we believe him?”
Businessman Tommy Jones said, “I wonder why everybody is talking about the Napoles case when it is already in court. It think that is what is wrong with the Philippines. Everybody talks and the people are confused.”
Dr. Pandac on other hand said, “ let us presume everybody is innocent until proven guilty by the court. The Senate investigations are only made in aid of legislation. Therefore the DOJ statements are all for grandstanding because the case is not yet on the docks.”
The TALAKAYAN ended well despite the heated discussions at times. The TALAKAYAN also thanked the food donors, Larry Pelayo, Dr Orly Cagampan and FACLA for their donations.
For more information about the TALAKAYAN sa FACLA please call (213) 484-1527 or email us [email protected] or visit our website at newfacla.org.