Roxas bares Malacanang plot to sabotage polls

May 6th, 2010

Liberal Party (LP) President and vice-presidential race frontrunner Senator Mar Roxas has bared a plot by President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s allies to sabotage the first-ever automated polls on May 10.

Roxas said that he received information that certain officials from Malacañang have been calling commissioners of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to postpone the scheduled national elections next week amid prohibitions in the law, particularly Republic Act No. 7166 or the Election Code.

The law provides that the poll body could postpone the elections in a certain locality, not nationwide.

Comelec officials, however, were warned by Roxas not to be dictated by pressure from Arroyo’s allies since the Comelec is an “independent constitutional body” and the election is a very crucial part of democracy.

He said the Comelec should do its constitutional mandate of ensuring the electorate of a successful election and thwart moves to postpone the polls.

The conduct of a successful election is a game-changer for the country, Roxas said, especially with people wanting for genuine change and reform pushed by the tandem of LP bets Senator Benigno S. Aquino III and his running mate, Roxas.

Roxas added that Comelec officials who receive calls from higher-ups should record the calls made by Malacañang officials.

Time for Renewal

May 5th, 2010

Hi everyone,

A year ago, no one expected us to be where we are today. We expected a different fight with different candidates and different issues. The death of Tita Cory has changed all that. It’s turned into a wake-up call for all of us. We’ve lost a hero, yes, but we didn’t want to lose what she stood for: a Philippines with leaders who place country above self, who respect the rights of all; a Philippines where justice is not just an empty word.

Tita Cory’s death has forced us to confront how badly our country has been governed by the present administration of GMA, how far we’ve strayed from our dreams as a nation. I’m sure that you’ve seen our people’s helpless anger expressed in survey after survey. It’s as if the nation wants to cry out at the top of its tired lungs, “tama na, sobra na!”

It’s true that we’ve been forced to bury our old plans and to make sacrifices (and believe me, that was not easy!) But what do you do when you sense that the times, that the country demands it? So we did something new in Philippine politics. In just a few months, we were able to create a new campaign, a new tandem not based on electoral arithmetic like the others.

No expert would have advised this a year ago. Yet here we are: not by careful design, but because the people put us there. Now that May 10 nears, we once again place our trust in the people… in YOU, as you mark your ballot for the future of this country. Rest assured that when the time comes that an Aquino-Roxas administration is given the chance to serve, that trust will be returned a hundred-fold. We will work for one thing only: to make the years from 2010 to 2016 a time of change, a time of hope… a much desired time for renewal.

Ever thankful for your support,

BPO industry credits visionary Roxas for phenomenal growth

May 5th, 2010

The business process outsourcing (BPO) industry formally recognized the “visionary” contributions of Liberal Party vice-presidential candidate Senator Mar Roxas to the phenomenal growth of the industry that has led to half a million jobs all over the country.

In paid advertisements published recently, BPAP credited Roxas for being “a staunch champion of the outsourcing industry since its birth, and was the visionary catalyst behind many of the most important initiatives that led to the explosive growth of the industry.”

As Secretary of the Department of Trade and Industry, Roxas harnessed the country’s potential as a global e-services hub, and launched the “Make IT Philippines” plan to attract global information technology service companies to invest in the country. He was cited by BPAP together with former SPi Technologies CEO Ernest Cu, McKinsey & Co. Philippines Managing Director Christopher Beshouri, and PEZA Director General Lilia De Lima.

From practically non-existent operations 10 years ago, the BPO industry grew tremendously and is now clocking in at P7.2 billion in revenues and 400,000 jobs created. It is now setting its sights to achieving $9.1 billion in revenues and more than half a million jobs this year.

“I thank our friends at the BPAP for pursuing our common vision and dreams for the industry. If we keep on with the same passion and persistence that we had when we grew the industry from practically nothing, it will not be too long until the Philippines becomes the number one location for BPO,” he stressed.

Roxas expressed his bullishness that the vibrant Philippine Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) will surpass its growth targets in the next few years. But the “Architect of BPO” stressed that establishing a clean and honest government is the most important prerequisite for this growth.

The industry is expected to grow not only in its established centers but also across the country. Among the “next wave” BPO sites are Davao City, Sta. Rosa in Laguna, Bacolod City, Iloilo City, Metro Cavite, Lipa City, Cagayan de Oro City, Malolos/Metro Bulacan, Baguio City and Dumaguete City.

Roxas noted that the industry’s optimism has to be matched by a sincere effort of government to address major concerns, such as the decline in qualified graduates, supply and price of electricity, the perennial problem of red tape and corruption hampering enterpise, among others. “All of these are issues that can be addressed by no-nonsense governance. The fight for reform translates to more jobs,” he stressed. 

“For instance, on the thinness of the workforce qualified for BPO jobs, we must reform the education system so that new graduates will not only be more proficient in English but also have the necessary skills to take on value-added BPO jobs,” he said.

Roxas worried Zambo Sur could be “Next Maguindanao”

May 4th, 2010

1 LP supporter slain in new attack in province; 1 LP volunteer leader missing after reported kidnap by armed men

Liberal Party President Senator Mar Roxas today condemned the violence brewing in Zamboanga del Sur that had taken the lives of 15 LP supporters as he insisted President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and DILG Secretary Ronaldo Puno must take direct blame for their inaction on the political violence against the opposition.

One more LP supporter was killed just this morning in Labangan town, increasing the death count to five in the said town alone. The perpetrators were a group of armed men, reportedly including local police forces.

“Are Gloria and Puno waiting for Zamboanga del Sur to become the next Maguindanao? We condemn the violence and the government’s failure to prevent this violence against opposition supporters,” Roxas complained in reference to the massacre last November of opposition supporters in Maguindanao.

Roxas appealed to PNP Director General Jesus Versoza to go to Zamboanga del Sur himself and lead the investigation into the spate of killings of LP supporters and ward leaders in the province that has martyred 15 LP members in the province, six in Labangan town alone, since the start of the campaign last February.

“General Versoza, do not allow your political masters to prevent justice from being carried out. You owe your post to the Filipino people and to our democracy that these killings endanger now,” he said.

The LP supporters were en route to Barangay Langatod on board two trucks as part of their regular rounds to train voters in far-flung barangay on the automated elections when they were blocked by armed men who then ordered them to alight from the trucks and walk back to their homes on foot. The armed men then killed the two supporters and burned the trucks.

Hindi makakaboto ang mga supporters ng LP hindi dahil ayaw nila kundi dahil tinatakot at pinapatay sila ng mga pulis miso sa Zamboanga del Sur (The LP’s voters cannot vote not because they don’t want to but because they are being killed and harassed by the local police in Zamboanga del Sur),” said Labangan Mayor Abubakar Afdal.

The LP had previously demanded the replacement of the local police chiefs of Zamboanga del Sur following the spate of political killings of the 15 supporters and ward leaders of the party and its candidates opposing the gubernatorial bid of the wife of incumbent Governor Antonio Cerilles since the start of the campaign last February.

Transcript of Sen. Mar Roxas’ Headstart interview with Karen Davila

May 4th, 2010

On survey lead, and the days leading to the election:

MAR: We would like to be in the forties. I’m now in the high thirties, thirty-seven. So now we have like a ten-point lead over our nearest rival, and a ten-point lead with one week to go—we’re not relaxing. We’re not relaxing. You know, Karen, a lot of our time now, with Senator Noynoy, is spent dealing with the issue that we were talking about, the counting of the votes, the irregularity of the elections. Because if indeed this is a sample of what will happen on election day, where people’s votes are not recorded, where there is a huge discrepancy between the manual and the counting machine. I don’t want to be alarmist, Karen, pero gulo ito, di ba? And so I really hope that the Comelec will really take this seriously. I hope the Comelec will take seriously our advocacy—for a manual audit , manual audit, immediately after election. . . The Comelec schedule kasi is that they will audit two weeks later. E aanhin pa ang damo kung patay na ang kabayo? Among the problems . . . was mayoral, gubernatorial. Can you imagine if all the towns and provinces of our country, tensionado tayo? My god, talagang napakasama niyan sa bansa natin.

On parallel manual counting, and PCOS machine defects:

Q: Why is it that you prefer a manual audit, given the problem we just saw with the PCOS? Do you want a 100% parallel manual count?

MAR: A hundred percent parallel manual count is okay, except that we’re not geared up for it. Di ba, where’s the paper, who’s going to actually do it, what are the precautions to be implemented? The Comelec’s never prepared for a 100% manual count. So kung pumasok tayo sa isang pamamaraan na hindi naman napaghandaan, that will be subject to so much question . . . Nasa batas naman yan e: Magkakaroon ng sampling, na kung saan, titingnan kung ano ba ang resulta ng bilangan ng makina, is the same as how the ballots are done. Tulad ng nangyari sa report. At kung maayos naman, kung tugma, e di at least may kumpiyansa tayo. Ang mahalaga dito, Karen, is kung ano man ang binuga nung makina, malalaman na ng sambayanan yan. Pero hindi natin alam kung totoo yan. Di the proof whether that is actually the actual count will come two weeks later, one month later. Samantala, nabulaga na tayo kung ano man ang resultang to. And if nobody trusts it. . .

On Senator Noynoy’s warning of a possible People Power:

Q: So the issue was really trust, right? Do you support Senator Noynoy’s call for People Power?

MAR: Senator Noynoy and I are committed to making sure that the people’s voice is heard. In our democratic system, the people’s voice is heard through the ballot. Pero kung wawalang-hiyain yang prosesong yan, kung guguluhin yan, tulad nung nakita natin sa report na hindi naman pala totoo yung lumalabas, iba-ibang bilang, iba-ibang kandidato, ibang usapan na yun. So ang point namin, we are committed to the democratic process. We want to make sure that the people’s voice will be heard.

Q: So how do you respond to Archbishop Rosales who said [People Power at this time] is crazy?

MAR: How can anybody not permit the people’s voice to be heard? E kung mali yung lumabas, hindi naman pala yan yung tunay na boses ng tao, di ba vox populi? How can anybody be a party, kasabwat sa pagtatago ng tunay na boses ng tao? But we do not take his comment very personally.

On endorsements of organized groups:

Q: What’s you reaction to Pastor Quiboloy endorsing you as VP?

MAR: I’m very very grateful to Pastor Quiboloy. He is a very respected man, and his congregation . . . I actually said na sana pati si Noynoy ang naisama nyo. Sabi nya na sa kanilang pagpupulong, in their church, yung iba nga ang lumabas.

Q: So is INC endorsing you and Noynoy?

MAR: We only hear rumors and speculation. But we don’t really respond to that. I guess soon we will know, at the proper time.

Q: But how valuable will the INC endorsement be?

MAR: It will be very valuable . . . If we are talking about membership, 5 to 6 million, a big number. It would be a very big help and at this point . . . major, organized groups come out and express their support . . . in the next couple of days.

On Ang Ladlad:

Q: What happened between you and Ang Ladlad? They chose to endorse Binay. But then we had Danton on the phone on this show, and he had said that he was willing to work for you, but you didn’t put out any money for some sorties, I think, in Bicol, if I remember correctly. What happened?

MAR: I think that the statement speaks for itself, no? They had asked for some financial support . . I investigated when that happened. Palagay ko naipit lang yung pondo, hindi malinaw kung ano ang nangyayari. Siguro nagmamadali sila, nagtampo sila, so they went the other way. We’re still friends with Danton.

Q: Have you spoken after that?

MAR: No.

On Joey Salceda:

MAR: You had a reporter there yesterday. In fact, we were in Albay yesterday, Legaspi, Bulangui.  Iniikot namin yung Albay. And Joey was there, extolling me, endorsing me, raising my hand. And the reporter, Maricar Bautista, of ABS, caught that also on film. So I think a picture paints a thousand words.

On Senator Chiz Escudero & Binay:

Q: What about Senator Chiz Escudero endorsing Binay? Several people think that it might cause division, given the fact that he’s for this NOY-BI tandem.

MAR: In our culture, nobody likes the third party. Matahimik, matibay, buong-buo ang samahan ng Noynoy-Mar, and people try to break that, they try to make issues between Noynoy and I. Pero matibay ang aming samahan, tahimik ang aming pagsasama. Nagkakaisa ang aming pananaw sa lahat ng issues. Matagal kaming naglaban. I mean, I respect everybody’s right to endorse whosoever that they may want. But for me, wala akong B. Wala akong baho, wala akong bisyo, so okay lang sa akin yan. [laughs]

Q: Ayan yung susunod na tanong. Kung si Binay, ayon kay Chiz, may B—e sabi mo na wala kang B. So anong meron ka?

MAR: K [laughs]

Q: Sa totoo lang, nagkaroon ba kayo ni Senator Chiz ng problema, dun sa media teams?

MAR: Wala, wala naman kaming problema. If you remember, Karen, Senator Osmena, who was the coordinator, had to now begin to focus on his campaign. So instead of spending time on the Noynoy campaign, he had to spend time on the Osmena campaign. So nandun ako, tumulong kami lahat, the entire ticket contributed, etc.

Q: But what didn’t you like about it?

MAR: No, there was nothing that I didn’t like. So, everybody contributed. And it wasn’t because may inalis o tinanggal. There were just no people assigned. Siguro nagkaroon ng intrigahan, nagkaroon ng pagsisikipan, and credit, some of the rankings in the orientation, so yun, lumaki. Pero wala namang isyu dun. Para sa amin, buong-buo, Noynoy-Mar ang dinadala ng kampanya.

Q: Do you think he’s a formidable opponent come 2016?

MAR: He’s not even my opponent now. He’s not in the race. I don’t know what he’s doing, nobody else knows also what will happen six years from now. Right now, we’re focused on the campaign.

On VP cabinet post:

Q: If elected, given a cabinet post, which portfolio would you like to handle?

MAR: Peksman, hindi pa namin napag-uusapan ni Senator Noynoy ‘yan. We all have our strengths and weaknesses. We all have our experiences and what we can bring to the table. I have national experience. As a DTI Secretary, I negotiated with the national treaties. I started the BPO call center industry here, panahon pa ni Erap n’un when we started that, and ngayon 400,000 jobs na. Ang karanasan ko hindi lang sa isang lugar, hindi lang sa isang siyudad, pero pambansa. Nilabanan natin ‘yung cement cartel, pharmaceutical cartel. Kung anu-anong paninira ang itinapon sa akin, pero hindi tayo natinag. Ngayon, ‘yung mga gamot, unti-unti nang bumababa ang presyo at sakaling palarin kami, talagang pupukpukin namin lahat yan.

Q: In terms of Cabinet posting, how do you feel now that Binay has said that 3 months ago, Noynoy has asked Binay “What Cabinet post do you want?”, and Binay said DILG. Noynoy said, “Sige, DILG, sa ‘yo na ‘yun.”

MAR: Senator Noynoy told me that conversation months ago. This was in an effort to have Jojo join the team as a Senator. And it was a fallback, kung hindi siya manalo sa Senador, DILG s’ya. But that was in a context na susuportahan niya ‘yung ticket. E, nagdesisyon si Jojo na ang kanyang pangulo ay si Erap. Nagdesisyon si Jojo na labanan niya ako, so magkahiwalay na ang landas na tinahak namin. Tapos na ‘yung usapan na ‘yon.

Q: If Aquino does not win the elections, and you did, will you join the People Power that Aquino was alluding to?

MAR: First of all, I am absolutely confident that Noynoy Aquino will win the elections. We have 20 to 30 volunteers per PCOS machine. From the time that the PCOS machine is tested and sealed, babantayan mo ‘yan until May 10, so shifting-shifting ‘yan. Isa sa mga strengths ng kampanya ni Noy and Mar is the huge volunteer organization, NGOs, yung mga kusang loob na tumulong, hindi nababayaran ‘yan, hindi empleyado ‘yan, all over the country.

Q: In terms of local government officials, you’re secure with that?

MAR: Very confident. We have a very broad network. There are many… apart from the LP, there are so many who were in different chaleco, pero yung sample ballot nila, Noynoy-Mar. This is their way of showing na ‘Hey, before elections, nasa inyo na kami’. So they will send us the sample ballot, kung ano ang ipinaimprenta nila, ‘yung resibo from the local printer para ipakita talaga na hindi lang ito isa o lima o sampu, daang libo ito, na ikakalat nila sa lugar nila. We feel that there is a huge organization that will support Noynoy-Mar.

Q: Do you think Noynoy Aquino is more qualified than you? What are Aquino’s oustanding accomplishments?

MAR: I think Noynoy is very qualified. Remember, ako ‘yung nagparaya kay Noynoy. Hindi ko naman siguro gagawin ‘yun kung hindi ako bilib sa kanyang kakayahan, most importantly, kung hindi ako bilib sa purity of his heart. Para sa akin, the purity of his heart, the generosity of his spirit, is his key qualification. Marunong siya tumanggi sa sarili niya. I mean, naging anak ng bayani, anak ng pangulo, hindi nagsiga-siga, hindi naghari-hari. He knows how to discipline himself. The moment you are president, wala ng magsasabi ang mali mo e. A President who has feet on the ground. Walang ere, totoo, matapat.

Q: Let’s go to issues, Loren was here the other day. I think this is a legitimate issue. In terms of agrarian reform, 1,645 hectares of land in Brgy. Mascap, Montalban, Rizal is owned by the Roxas family. Is this correct?

MAR: No it’s not, it’s owned by the Aranetas, my forebearers. This was bought as residential/commercial.

Q: When was this bought?

MAR: In the ’70s. May agrarian reform na nun eh Marcos time. Ang classification nito ay residential/commercial and it was bought as such. Hindi ito agricultural na kinonvert. Commercial/residential na po ito. Hindi ganon. And nung nabili ito bigla na lang may nag claim na kanila din ito. Some of them are magsasaka, some of them are urban poor na nag plant don. So napunta sa korte. it’s been in court all these years. Naging congressman ako, naging secretary ako, naging senador ako ni minsan hindi ko pinakialaman yang kaso na yan. Kahit sinong fiscal, kahit sinong nasa DAR, kahit sinong huwes, kahit sino wala silang masasabi na tumawag ako na nakikiusap tungkol sa kaso na yan. In fact just to prove to you,it’s been there I think 15 years already. So walang nagmamaniobra diyan. We will follow what the law says, we will follow what the court says.

Q: But you are not gonna push for this to go into agrarian reform?

MAR: It’s not agrarian land to begin with. Diba?

Q: So you are not going the Hacienda Luisita way where people are forcing Noynoy to give out the lands?

MAR: No it’s different because this is not an agricultural land to begin with. There were no crops to begin with. This was bought by my forebearers already as residential. In fact it’s called Bagong Silangan because this is where supposed to be the migration or the expansion of Metro Manila would be, not as agricultural but as bedroom communities or suburbs all over Metro Manila. But right now it’s in court, it’s in the Supreme Court. We’ve won every step but it’s now in the Supreme Court and we will just await whatever happens that the court says. And we will follow. By the way I did vote for CARP. I mean, I am for CARP. All of the agricultural lands owned by my forebearers have been voluntarily offered to sell. We are in compliance with the law. So it’s one of those paninira na gumagawa ng issue na wala.

Q: So what you are saying is you voted for CARP and you’ve done your part, but this land is not agricultural in nature. Okay. Alright with the Cheaper Medicines, I’m sure you’ve heard of this already but it’s been b rought up a couple of times wherein you used it as a brand of Mar Roxas. I mean you used it as a branding in terms of success while you were in the Senate. But they also say that you the genuine author of the law was the murderer of the law by watering down the Cheaper Medicines Act itself, the original version. Now they talk about the P1 billion lobby fund that must have gotten into you. What happened? Did you water it down?

MAR: Absolutely, completely a lie. There is no watering down. In fact I will show you who in fact wanted to water it down, Mar Roxas’ version, which by the way the Senate unanimously approved. Unanimously, including Villar, Loren, including those who are now criticizing it. In fact there were press releases praising it as an accomplishment of the Senate. I have it on file ha. mga praise release nila that they were part of the effort. Okay. Mar Roxas’ version. The President, through the Secretary of health, is accountable. Their version, what they’re pushing, what they pushed, a board, which will include pharmaceutical companies in that board, representatives. Let me ask you Karen, you are sitting here in the news, may napapala ba tayo sa Energy Regulatory Board? Sa Toll Regulatory Board? Sa Road Users’ Tax Board? Lahat ito ng board board na ito na nagtuturuan lang, nagpapasahan lang. There is no accountability. Walang pananagutan, walang mananagot, wala tayong makakalampag, wala tayong mapupukpok. Kaya pagod na pagod na ako don sa pasahan, sabi ko ‘ibigay natin sa Pangulo.’ Tutal siya naman ang may mandato, ang Pangulo din mag-a appoint. And then why not the President na? So that we can say ‘We gave you this martilyo to pukpok the prices.’ What have you done with it? Rather than a board. You tell me now what is the watered down version? A board that is diffused, that has no accountability which may include representatives from the pharmaceutical industry, or direct accountability to the highest elected official of the land, the president?

Q: Okay, was it only about that? What about certain medicines that they say? I know there are 22 essential medicines that are included.

MAR: Also absolutely false. There is no limitation inthe law. The law says in fact go after all medicines, right? In fact I think there are more than 100 medicines. If you add all of the… 3 mg, 5 mg, 10 mg… I mean they are in the hundreds. Let me ask you even my katunggali, she did not know that the Lipitor she takes 3x a week used to be P105 a tablet, ngayon P50 na lang.

Q: But in the market is it really P50 already?

MAR: Yes.

Q: Right now? No, I don’t take Lipitor. Thank God for that.

MAR: Karen naman. Your whole news organization right now, send out a reporter right now before the end of your show he can come back. Send him out may botika naman diyan sa tabi he can come back, it’s P50. Norvasc, para altapresyon, eto naa-altapresyon na na ako dito (laughs), dati P47 and tableta, gnayon P22 na lang. Diamicron para sa diabetes yan. You know diabetes is a big problem in our country. 8 million people have diabetes, and there are another 16 million with what they call high sugar, pre-diabetic. Meaning if they don’t watch out, papasok sa diabetes. Ang gamot diyan Diamicron, twice a day. Dati P15 per tablet, ngayon P7 pe tablet because of our law. Ang savings mo per day is P15. You know what P15 is? Kalahating kilong bigas, dalawang paketeng noodles.

Q: So Suplico has no basis?

MAR: He wasn’t even a congressman. So you know all of these are paninira. Hindi na nila maiangat ang sarili nila eh yung puno na may matamis na bunga binabato nila.

Q: How will you help run this country aside from being a mere assistant or adviser? That’s a good point. Well you have Noli de Castro went into HUDCC and worked quietly. Is that gonna be your style like ala-Noli or you are gonna be out there?

MAR: Whatever the role is, I believe that the president gets to assign you what he wants. But I also believe that the vice-president has a mandate and the most important that the vice-president can do with a president is to tell him the total, unvarnished truth everytime. Because the president cannot fire you. If you’re a Cabinet na wala kang boto, you can be fired, matatakot kang magsalita eh. As vice-president, nakatanggap ka ng boto, pwede mong sabihin na ‘chief mukhang alanganin yata yan ah.’ You know you can advice him strongly, you can tell him what you think, you can tell him kung ano talaga ang nangyayari.

Q: And that’s a good point.

MAR: Because there is the technical skill. I mean my credentials are well-established.  So there’s the technical skills but I think the most important is to be able to say what’s really happening, as an alternative view. The president can accept it, reject it, can modify it, whatever, but at least nasabi mo kung ano yung saloobin mo kung ano yung katotohanang nakita mo. That’s a good check and balance because as I said, if you are the president you live in a bubble, in a coccoon, where everything you do is wonderful. And you need people. Wise presidents have people around them to tell them the truth.
Q: Okay. Are you amenable to revising the 1987 Constitution?  And do you have any plans for Pinoys living abroad?
MAR: I’m open to revising the Constitution but I don’t think it’s our problem. It’s not our limitation. You know i was 4 years DTI secretary, all of these international investors ang puntahan niyan, ang reklamuhan niyan yung opisina ko. Not once did they say, ‘change the Constitution.’ They all said, ‘kinikikilan kami sa Customs… yung barangay captain hino-hostage kami na kung hindi namin i-hire yung anak niya, isasara niya yung access sa planta namin.’ Yun ang mga problema ng investors dito, harassment eh. Hindi naman yung mga malalaki na nasa Saligang Batas. In fact I was just talking to Robert Kwok who set up the new Shangri-la in Boracay. He said ‘Mar, I don’t own the land. I don’t need to own the land. I don’t own the land here in EDSA Plaza, I don’t own the land in Shangri-la Makati, I don’t own the land in Shangri-la Cebu.’ Owning the land is not a restriction. We just want good government so that we can conduct our business. So changing the Constitution in terms of economic viability I don’t think is our limitation. Our limitation is good governance and the corruption. Corruption talaga ang pinaka prolema natin.

Q: Now in terms of Pinoys living abroad, what do you plan for them?

MAR: What we want for them to do is find a hospitable environment here so that they can consider coming back and bringing their capital with them, bringing their know-how with them. A huge portion of the India economic success is because all of these Indians studied abroad were assistants, managers, vice-presidents in companies abroad and then they found that ‘uy, I can bring my savings and my technological know-how back to India.’

Q: And they’re number 1 in outsourcing.

MAR: Yes. Kaya ang sinasabi namin, ‘Kung walang corrupt, walang mahirap.’ Lilinisin natin ang gobyerno, we can implement programs. This is just on the side. When I was DTI, i bought 30,000 computers, desktop computers, brand new, international bidding, Japanese funded, not alone, grant. Walang anomalya, nothing. Delivered and everybody working as computer laboratories, 10 or 20 computers per high school all over the country.

Q: So you’re saying it can happen?

MAR: It can happen. Pwede yan, itutuloy natin yan. And that is what we hope to bring to the country.

Q: Okay. maraming nagsasabi na hindi siya iboboto because of his wife Korina, ano’ng masasabi niya dito?

MAR: Sorry na lang sila (laughs).

Q: You’re not really in love ha?

MAR: It’s the best decision I’ve ever made.

Q: Really?

MAR: (nodding). Honey I hope you’re watching ha (laughs).

Q: A lot of people kid about you having a very strong mother. Your mother’s really strong?

MAR: She has a strong personality. I like strong personalities.

Q: Is that why you chose Korina?

MAR: It’s possible. I like strong personalities.I like to have an engaged conversation, dialogue, relationship. Eh kung lahat na lang ng sinabi mo okay, eh parang kausap mo na lang sarili mo diba. I mean, i enjoy it. I’m confident in myself. okay lang sa akin ang may strong personality.

Q: But you were a bachelor for a very long time. Many people thought you’d never… I’ve heard about that, I’ve heard about you. So what did it for you? At one point people are saying that you were gonna get married because of the presidency. But by that time you weren’t running for president anymore and you both still got married.

MAR: You know I don’t pay attention to all of these comments. Korina and my relationship is very strong. we’ve been together through up and down, over 5 years as boyfriend-girlfriend. So matibay naman ang samahan namin. Kindatan lang kami nagkakaintindihan na. So I’m very happy where I am. All those doubt, all those who have a comment, okay lang sila.

Q: You feel Korina is misunderstood somehow? I mean it went all over Twitter the other night so I might as well ask you. During the Tears for Fears concert, when she came out on the big screen, she was booed in Araneta. Why do you think does that happen?

MAR: I don’t know. Maybe it was cheers. I don’t know because I was not there. I have no idea. I don’t even know if that actually happened. The point lang is there are many, many people who admire Korina. She’s the most trusted, the latest poll she’s the most trusted journalist in our country. She certainly did not go there to draw attention to herself. She was there enjoying like everybody else and so hindi naman tawag pansin sa kanya so nag-enjoy lang siya don. By the way wala naman siyang reklamo eh or kwento when she came home.

Q: Oh that’s really nice ha. Regarding the big issue, you remember this when it came out.

MAR: Well your own network, your own news department revealed that it was a set up by, I won’t mention names na, by a katunggali. Diba they were all wearing the orange color. Yung waiter mismo sabi ‘inaantay namin si Senadora Loren.’ Kayo mismo nag report non ha hindi ako, inuulit ko lang. Roll the video tape. Asan ang video tape nyo? kayo nasabi non hindi ako. So nabubuking, gasgas na. Kaya lahat nitong paninira kay Mar Roxas na nilusaw daw ho yung batas, na ako daw author ng VAT. I’m not the author of VAT, I’m not the sponsor of VAT, hindi nga ako sa committee na yon. Kung ano-anong paninira.

Q: But did you vote for VAT?

MAR: Yes I did vote for VAT.

Q: Alright. VAT has taken on a major… it’s an election tool. It’s a sore election issue. Why do you think is VAT important? The EVAT.

MAR: Well my view is taxes is not what’s wrong. What’s wrong is when you steal the tax. Yung pambayad sa pulis, hindi naman sa hangin nanggagaling yan. Pambayad sa teacher… In fact, yung pambayad sa lahat nitong giveaways, cake, kung ano-ano man ng katunggali ko, ng isang katunggali ko, kabahagi niyan galing sa VAT ha. Because VAT goes into the Internal Revenue Allotment which goes to all local government units. Kung ninanakaw ito at hindi bumabalik sa tao, yan ang masama. So ang feeling ko is nirereklamo ng tao na hindi bumabalik sa kanila buwis na binabayad nila. By the way same issue sa GSIS. All over the country kahat saan kami pumunta lahat ng teachers, sundalo, pulis, lahat ng kawani ng gobyerno ‘ayusin niyo GSIS sir, ayusin niyo ang GSIS.’ And what’s the problem? Same thing, nagbabayad sila. Hindi pa nga nila nakikita yung sweldo nila kaltas na yung GSIS eh. Nagbabayad sila ng buwis sa GSIS pero pag report sa GSIS kung nakabayad na sila o hindi, mabagal, late. Therefore they have no benefits. Ang reklamo naman ng tao is ‘nagbabayad kami, asan yung serisyo namin?’ Kung pumasok tayo sa Jollibee o sa McDo, pagbayad natin may hamburger o kung ano man yon. Pero dito sa gobyerno pagbayad natin, wala nakikita na lang natin yung mga matataas na opisyal kung ano-ano ginagawa sa pera natin.

Q: Please talk to our voters before we go.

MAR: Thank you, maraming maraming salamat. Magandang umaga po sa inyong lahat. Ito po si Mar Roxas, kilala po ninyo ako, matagal na po akong nasa public. Wala pong sikretong tinatago at ang track record ko naman po alam niyo: walang mantsa, walang bahid, o katulad ng sinabi ko kanina, walang bisyo. Walang ibang ginagawa kundi ang matuwid at matapat. Yan din po ang aking hangarin, suportahan ko ang pangulo ko si Senador Noynoy Aquino para maihatid po ang katapusan ng korupsyon at simula ng kasaganahan. Nandito na po tayo, iilang araw na lang po, magpursigi po tayo, bantayan po natin ang ating boto. Ito po ang ating paraan para makamit ang pagbabago para sa ating bansa.

Transcript of Sen. Mar Roxas interview with DZMM’s Ted Failon

May 4th, 2010

On Teddy Boy Locsin’s endorsement

MAR: Nakita niya ang nangyayari sa Makati. Gusto nya (Locsin) akong suportahan, tinanong niya okay ba ako? So sabi ko, ‘sure, okay, maraming salamat.’ Tayo naman ay high level tayo at hindi tayo nagsimula nito. Never, never nagba-black propaganda, hindi tayo naninira. Parati lang harap yung ating plataporma at nang sa ganon makita ng tao kung anong nagawa natin, matitimbang kami at makikilatis,  makakapagpasya sila.

Q: Alam niyo napakaselang usapin ng survey. May mga tao na alam pong nagpapa- survey pero kapag binanggit mo ang survey, masyadong sensitive. So ano ang dating sa inyo ng survey na ito na dumidikit na ang Jojo Binay sayo? Hindi naman dumidikit, actually 10 points.

MAR: Well ganun na nga yon, 1 minute to go, 10 points. Ganun pa man hindi tayo nagrerelax at patuloy ang ating kampanya. Natutuwa ako na ang bilang ng boto nila Senador Noynoy at Senador Mar sa survey, magkalapit eh. So hindi nagkakaiwanan. Yung pagkakaiba lang, kinain ni Mayor Binay yung boto ni Senador Legarda. So mas malaki ang nakain niya doon kaya 10 points. Pero kumpiyansado naman ako na sa dulo ay ang tambalang Noynoy-Mar ang siyang pipiliin ng mga tao.

Q: Yun nga, at the end of the day, kung survey na actual at final survey ang mananaig, itong mga reports ng pag-aberya ng PCOS machines, hindi ba nababahala ang inyong partido?

MAR: Nababahala kami. In fact kagabi hanggang halos midnight ay nag-usap kami ni Senador Noynoy tungkol dito sa mga reports na hindi binabasa ng makina kung ano man ang isinubo hindi na binabasa. Mahalagang mahalaga na maayos ito ng Comelec. Mahalagang mahalaga na magamot ito maski anuman. If it’s a software solution, if it’s a transmission solution, hindi ko alam kung ano pero magkakagulo. Isipin mo ikaw lumahok ka rin sa halalan, all over the country may nagkakatunggaliang mayor, konsehal, vice mayor, governor. Biro mo sa May 10, gulo ito. Hindi ito mabuti para sa ating bansa at dapat agad agad magkaroon ng solusyon dito at bukod pa don, agad agad, after May 10, the next day May 11, gumawa ng audit, manual audit.

Q: Ito pa rin yung binabanggit nyo na parallel na manual?

MAR: Hindi, iba. May mga nagmumungkahi na parallel manual, ibig sabihin 100% bibilangin. Okay din yon. Pero tanggapin natin hindi tayo naka set up para dyan. Yung mga guro, yung sheets, yung pagtala, hindi tayo naka setup para dyan. Pero bago pa yan dumating dyan, makikita naman natin may makikita tayong indikasyon, ang tinatawag na audit. Ang problema dito is that gagawin ito ng Comelec two weeks after election. Aanhin mo pa ang damo patay na ang kabayo. Diba? Dapat magka audit the next day May 11 para makita kung ano ang binubuga ng makina, yun din ang nilalaman ng mga balota sa loob. Ang nasa batas ay 1 or 2%, pwede gawing 5% ito or 3%. Ibig sabihin magkaroon ng sample. Kumbaga sa cash register ng SM, kung nasa SM tayo diba parang sasabihin lang ni Mr Sy o tingin nga tayo ng ibang cashier diyan. Kung ano yung nasa tape ganun diba yung laman… hindi naman kailangan lahat ng cash register ay gawin nila yan pero makita lang kung umaandar ang sistema. Bakit tinututulan ito ng Comelec? Ngayon gusto ng Comelec 2 weeks pa after ng election bago nila gawin ito.

Q: So ano ang gagawin ng inyong partido dito?

MAR: Itutulak namin ito, matagal na naming itinutulak ito sa Comelec at sana matapos itong karanasan nila kahapon na magkakaroon ng malaking pagdududa sa resulta ay irekonsidera nila ang desisyon nila.

Q: Ang alam ko kasi nga ang sabi ng Comelec, ‘yung random na yan basta kung ano yung resulta ita-transmit na eh, to follow yung random.

MAR: Tama.

Q: Ayun ang binabanggit sa amin ng Comelec sa aming panayam kay James Jimenez.

MAR: Okay po yon Kuya Ted. To follow. But it must follow the next day. Wag naman to follow 2 weeks later. Kasi nasa plano ngayon ng Comelec gagawin nila yan 2 weeks later, May 24 or 25.

Q: Pero sabi ng Comelec kasi gagawin yan agad naman randomly yung audit right after the election. I mean, right after mag-close yung precinct.

MAR: Ayun ang minumungkahi natin.

Q: Ayun ang sabi sa amin ni James Jimenez.

MAR: Kung yan ang gagawin nila, very good.

Q: Ang siste lang para sa akin is will they transmit na the result of the precinct doon sa canvassing sa probinsya hanggang sa central office habang ginagawa ang random. Eh sabi ko papano kung may nakita kayong mali don? ‘You can just file a protest noh’ sabi daw. Sabi ko doon medyo ano ako. Anyway so sa lahat ng pangyayaring ito Senador Mar, sa akin naman kasi wala tayong choice eh. It’s the Comelec, sila naman po ang naatasan ng batas, sila ang dapat na pagkatiwalaan natin. Marami naman pong ganitong fears, mga nangyayari but at the end of the day, sila pa rin po eh. So meron bang watcher ang lahat ng presinto. 76,000 precincts ang Liberal Party?

MAR: Opo, yan po magagarantya ko. In fact bawat PCOS machine bumuo kami ng volunteer gropus. 20 hanggang 30 ang volunteers bawat PCOS machine, bawat clustered precinct. Kasi magmula sa araw na i-testing yang PCOS na yan, isi-seal na yan eh. Andyan na yan eh. Nakatiwangwang na lang yan dyan eh. So kailangan binabantayan mo yan magmula today hanggang May 10. Yung kampanyang Noynoy-Mar ay talagang maswerte tayo at sinusuportahan tayo ng mga kababayan, mga NGOs, mga volunteer groups. Hindi po empleyado ito, hindi po binabayaran ito, talagang gusto nila sa pagbabago kaya sinasabi lang naming talaga na mukha lang kami para sa pagbabago. Itong mga kababayan natin all over the country sila mismo magbabantay.

Q: May mga bumabatikos po sa inyo kasi pinag uusapan nga kung sinong mga miyembro ng gabinete etc. Sa aking pananaw kung maaari ko lang matanong sina Ginoong Aquino, si Ginoong Villar at ibang tumatakbong pangulo. Gusto ko lang malaman kung ikaw ay manalo, sinong i-a- appoint mong Cabinet Secretary sa mga importanteng portfolio? Kasi don mo malalaman eh, yung mukha ng pagbabago na binabanggit mo baka naman… sila pa rin eh. Parang ganon. So for example, energy natin, problema natin ang taas ng kuryente Diyos ko po Panginoong Diyos tumaas ang lahat ng mga consumers.

MAR: Dumoble.

Q: Hindi ko alam kung kasama ka doon sa nagpasa ng Electric Power Industry Reform Act. Yung EPIRA Law. Are you part of that?

MAR: No. Naging senador ako 2004.

Q: Ito yung last measure nung Erap Congress pa eh.

MAR: Nung panahon ni Erap Cabinet member ako non.

Q: Mar itong WESM, yung beauty ng competition parang Oil Deregulation Law, lumalabas na cartel din. Parang lumalabas na sa halip na nagpapababa ng presyo, kung ano ang huling ceiling price, doon nila hinahabol eh. Kung P1,000 yan, sabihin mo na kung P100 per kilowatt hour yan, dun ho sila naghahabol. Eh wala yung beauty ng competition.

MAR: Mali ho yun. Yun talaga collusion yon. Dapat itigil yon. Para sa akin, yung problema dito ay yung Napocor, sobrang laki pa rin ng bahagi ng Napocor. Ang Napocor ang nagse-set ng price. Siya ‘yung parang monopoly. Ang problema ng Napocor sa laki ng kanyang utang, sa laki ng kanyang negative cash flow, tinataasan nya yung kanyang presyo para makabawi sya. Ito namang mga pribado, ang gobyerno ganyan maningil, sumusunod sila. Aba’y ayan ang malaking problema. Ito yung dapat na baguhin. Kaya tayo hindi dapat na itong supposed to be nagko compete sila para bumaba ang presyo, ay maging kasangkapan para magkakuntsaba sila para tumaas ang presyo.

Q: Ang punto ko nga rito kung maaari nga lahat kayong tumatakbo—yung pangulo, bise presidente—sino ba ang inyong Energy Secretary?

MAR: Hindi namin napag-uusapan yan. Pero sa totoo lang, sa tagal nitong kampanyang ito sa tagal ng pagkasama namin ni Senador Noynoy, hindi namin napag-usapan ang mga personalidad. Mostly the policies. In fact kami nga eh, ang tanong sakin ano ang portfolio mo? Peksman hindi namin napag-uusapan yan.

Q: Pero ang akin lang kasi, gusto ko ring makita yung magiging mukha ng lahat po ng tumatakbo… magiging mukha ng gabinete mo. Sino ba magiging Finance mo, sino Customs mo?

MAR: Kung pagbabago ka or more of the same. O tuloy ang ligaya lang.

Q: Huli lang na punto doon sa Cheaper Medicines Act. Kasi maraming newspaper advertisements ang inuupakan ka eh.

MAR: Alam ko paninira ito eh. 100% paninira, black propaganda, kasinungalingan. Ikaw naging kongresista ka. Ang ipinasa nating bersyon, binigay natin yung kapangyarihan sa pangulo. May pananagutan. Pwede natin syang kalampagin, ikaw mismo pwede mo, bilang komentarista rito, pwede mong singilin, ‘Oy madam President binigyan ka ng martilyo bakit hindi mo mapababa ang presyo?’ Merong isang indibidwal na nahalal,  na pinaka-makapangyarihan, pangulo na pwede nating singilin. Yan ang ipinasa natin yan ang itinulak ni Mar Roxas. Accountability .Yung gusto ng katunggali ko is board. Alam naman natin may napala ba tayo sa Toll Regulatory Board? Sa Water Resources Board? Sa Road Users’ Tax Board? Itong mga board-board na ito nagtuturuan lang, pasahan, walang may accountability and dagdag pa don, kabahagi ng board na yan, ito yung bill ng katunggali ko ha, kasama ang pharmaceutical companies sa board. May representasyon. Now you tell me kung sino ang gustong lumusaw at yung gusto na matindi at puspusan ang pagtutol niya dito. Yan ang mga press release ng katunggali ko, pati yung katunggali ni Senador Noynoy. Pinupuri nila yung batas na ito bilang accomplishment nila. Tuwang tuwa sila na naipasa ito. Tapos ngayon dahil halalan na ay mali na.

Leyte Gov endorses Roxas for VP

May 4th, 2010

Bandwagon on for VP Race Leader

The bandwagon of support for Liberal Party vice-presidential candidate and race leader Senator Mar Roxas continues, as another administration ally joined other major sectoral groups and regional political giants in endorsing his candidacy.

Leyte Gov. Carlos Jericho “Icot” Petilla, the Lakas-KAMPI-CMD’s gubernatorial candidate in the province, endorsed Roxas’ vice presidential bid during a media interview on Monday.

Petilla said Roxas is the only vice-presidential bet who has the political will, experience, clean track record and the determination to help the country move forward.

The governor expressed confidence that Roxas would be a credible partner of LP presidential candidate Senator Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino in uplifting the lives of the Filipino people and in reviving the image of the country from the stigma of corruption.

Aside from Petilla, Sagay City Mayor Alfredo Marañon of Negros Occidental, Cebu City Mayor Tommy Osmeña, Capiz Gov. Victor Tangco have likewise thrown their support for Roxas’ May 10 bid.

Zamboanga City Mayor Celso Lobregat and the Northern Alliance of the House of Representatives have also thrown their support for Roxas’ vice presidential candidacy, whose campaign is anchored on an upright and corruption-free government.

The Northern Alliance includes House Deputy Speaker for Northern Luzon and Ilocos Sur 2nd District Rep. Eric Singson, Pangasinan 6th district Rep. Conrado Estrella III, Rep. Robert Raymund “Eskimo” Estrella of the  Abono party list, Benguet lone district Rep. Samuel Dangwa, Rep. Jose Ping-ay of the Cooperative-National Confederation of Cooperatives (COOP-NATCO) and Rep. Ernesto Pablo of the Association of Philippine Electric Cooperative (APEC) party list.

Roxas’ bid was also recently endorsed by Pastor Apollo Quiboloy, founder of the religious congregation Kingdom of Jesus Christ (KJC), which boasts of a 6 million global membership.

Major labor groups headquartered in the Visayas expected to announce today its support for Roxas, joining other labor organizations representing 30,000 and 47 farmers groups representing almost half a million farmers nationwide that had earlier announced their support for Aquino and Roxas.

Bicolanos seen to go overwhelmingly for Aquino-Roxas tandem

May 3rd, 2010

Traditional yellow vote expected to deliver victory for LP bets

Albay Gov. Joey Salceda today said a strong tradition among Bicolanos to vote “yellow” every election and a strong ground campaign would deliver a solid Bicolano vote on May 10 to Liberal Party standard-bearers Senators Benigno S. Aquino III and Mar Roxas.

Salceda, the new LP chairman charged with managing the campaign for the party in the region, gave the confident assessment as Aquino and Roxas barnstormed the Bicol region in the final leg of their campaign for the top elective posts in the May 10 national elections.

He said an independent region-wide multi-stage survey with 1,400 respondents showed an overwhelming support of 53% for both Aquino and Roxas. Salceda said the LP is targeting to deliver at least 60% of the 3.4 million Bicolano votes to Aquino and Roxas.

To strengthen the “yellow” tradition among Bicolanos, simultaneous meetings are being held everyday in all of the 781 barangays of the Bicol region, aside from the house-to-house campaign being done by supporters and volunteers of Aquino and Roxas and the LP senatorial ticket SLAMAT LORRRD.

“We are working for a solid Aquino-Roxas support on the ground, especially in the mainland. Every barangay, every family, we are working on ensuring they vote for Aquino and Roxas,” he said.

Asked about Bicolano Sen. Chiz Escudero’s endorsement of a vice-presidential candidate from another party, Salceda said he is confident his personal campaigning for Aquino and Roxas will have more impact on voters on Election Day than Escudero’s well-funded advertising campaign.

“Our difference (between him and Chiz) is that I have a working political machinery and my barangay officials can work on the voters more effectively than his advertisement,” he said.

Salceda, who is running unopposed for governor of Albay province, pointed out the LP has strong support in the region because Bicolanos have always “voted yellow,” citing the strong sentiment among the people for the legacy of the late President Corazon Aquino.

Laylo-MST survey kinumpirma na No. 1 si Roxas sa May 10 polls

May 3rd, 2010

Pitong araw bago ang kauna-unahang automated elections sa bansa sa Mayo 10, kinumpirma ng isang bagong survey ng mga botante na halos halos tiyak na ang panalo ni Liberal Party vice-presidential candidate at race frontrunner Mar Roxas ng may lamang na halos limang milyong boto sa kandidatong papangalawa sa kanya.

Patuloy na nangunguna kontra sa kanyang mga katunggali sa pagka-Bise Presidente si Roxas batay sa pinakahuling survey na isinagawa ng pollster na si Junie Laylo para sa pahayagang Manila Standard Today noong Abril 25-27 sa 2,500 na respondents na mga rehistradong botante sa buong bansa.

Kung makakaboto lahat ang tinatayang 50 milyong rehistradong botante, lalamang si Roxas ng halos limang milyong boto sa pinakamalapit niyang karibal sa pagka-Pangalawang Pangulo, ayon sa survey na ito.

Batay sa resulta ng naturang survey, nanguna si Roxas sa mga kandidato para Bise-Presidente na may 38% na boto o sampung puntos na lamang sa pumangalawang si Makati Mayor Jojo Binay, na naungusan naman ang dating laging pumapangalawa na si Senador Loren Legarda sa nakuha niyang 28% na rating kumpara sa 20% ng senadora.

Umakyat sa pang-apat na puwesto ang kandidato ng Arroyo Administration na si Edu Manzano sa nakuha niyang 3% samantalang si  Bayani Fernando ay nakakolekta ng 2%. Ang iba pang kandidato para sa bise president ay mayroon lamang ratings na 1 percent o mas mababa pa rito.

Inaasahan ng kampo ni Roxas na lalo pang lalaki ang lamang niya sa botohan sa susunod na Lunes kasunod ng matunog na pag-endorso sa kanya ng iba’t ibang grupo ng mga manggagawa, magsasaka at mga religious groups gaya ng grupo ni Pastor Apollo Quiboloy.

Pormal ding inindorso si Roxas ng mga kongresista bumubuo sa Northern Alliance sa pangunguna ni Ilocos Sur Rep. Eric Singson at ng mga kilalang gobernador at mayor sa buong bansa gaya ni Sagay City Mayor Alfredo Marañon na nangungunang kandidato para sa gobernador sa Negros Occidental, si Mayor Celso Lobregat ng Zamboanga City at iba pa.

Mas nauna sa survey na ginawa ni Laylo para sa Manila Standard Today, kinumpirma din ng isang survey naman na ginawa ng Pulse Asia mula Abril 23-25 na nangunguna si Roxas sa gustong iboto ng mga Pilipino bilang Pangalawang Pangulo at maaaring umabot sa halos limang milyong boto ang maaaring maging lamang niya kumpara sa makukuha ng pinakamalapit niyang karibal sa halalan.

VICE PRESIDENTIAL RACE April 25-27 April 18-20
Sen. Mar Roxas 38 41
Makati Mayor Jejomar Binay 28 22
Senator Loren Legarda 20 23
Bayani Fernando 2 3
Edu Manzano 3 2

Statement welcoming the endorsement of Pastor Apollo C. Quiboloy

May 3rd, 2010

“I thank Pastor Apollo Quiboloy for declaring his support to my candidacy and our fight for a life that is prosperous, peaceful and full of hope for every Filipino family.

“More than anything else, I am looking forward to Pastor Apollo’s guidance and wisdom along the path of rebuilding our nation.

“The people are God’s best gift to our nation. The people continue to be our source of strength.”