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The Rule of Law

April 1st, 2008 1 comment

Our government, when faced with an intense political pressure and crisis would simply cry, uphold the rule of law. As if those who are questioning its corrupt practices are not following the rule of law.

Through this “Uphold the Rule of Law” dictum, MMDA’s Bayani Fernando draws mandate for his URBANIDAD campaign — a campaign of instilling discipline in Metro Manila citizens. As if to help remind people about law and order, Bayani Fernando has used tax-payers money to print and mount his gigantic portraits with a few wordings about law and order, on the columns of MRT covering the long stretch of EDSA. At the bottom of these Bayani Fernando portrait-posters are written, “Government property do not remove. Mere possession of this sign is punishable by law. – MMDA.” So for all of you taxpayers out there, there goes your hard earned money.

Remember people, Uphold the Rule of Law!, those are the marching orders with the whiplash in the background. But wait, what law? And whose Law?

 

For two days now, the MMDA (again!) had grabbed the Metro news with its new antic—the spray painting of buses they caught to be out of line and had no chips (whatever those are). They lined up the impounded buses and this MMDA honcho named Roberto Esquivel happily led the spray painting spree. The buses were spray painted with the scarlet letters, “Out-of-line, Colorum”—as if it was the poor vehicle’s fault.

Not so long ago, this shame campaign was used by Alfredo Lim in his anti-drug campaign. He used to mark houses of suspected Drug Users and Peddlers with warning signs, without effect but only to put people to shame. Mayor Alfredo Lim did not paint his son’s house. But just recently, his son was busted for narcotics.

This shame campaign has drawn flak because it is in violation of the constitutional rights of due process of law. The Court of Appeals, in a decision issued in 2000, ruled that the shame campaign was ‘invalid.’ That decision was upheld by the Supreme Court in 2003.
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