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Commentary: Respect for other's views

By Bong Pedelino

MAASIN CITY (28 September) -- Cabinet Secretary Ricardo Saludo had spoken quite openly about the raging issue on Charter Change(CHA-CHA)during his visit in Tacloban City last September 21.In relation to the many voices now being raised favoring this manner, of re-writing the Constitution, Saludo's message was crystal-clear respect for the views of others.

For instance, when told at a press conference that the country's Bishops preferred constitutional convention over the two other options, Saludo replied, in casual way; "We respect their view in the same way that we respect opinions of other people who want cha-cha through a constituent assembly or people's initiative-these are all modes that are allowed under the constitution."

He added: "The Bishops had expressed their preference, we respect that; others have their own preference, we respect those also."


But more than fostering the value of respect, Sec.Saludo put things in proper perspective when he frankly stated that Malacañang in which he is an occupant by virtue of his position in government - has no particular preference in whatever mode of changing the charter.

"We cannot call a constitutional convention, we cannot file a people's initiative, we cannot tell the Congress to create a constituent assembly,"he said in a firm and convincing voice.

I believe many were enlightened on the hot issue after that brief encounter with the Secretary.


Yesterday, September 26, after a spirited debate on the petition for the people's initiative issue in a hearing at the Supreme Court, the words of Sec.Saludo, particularly on Malacañang's non-preference of any mode, became so timely.

This was because of insinuations that the people's initiative was a government initiative. Former President Estrada was even quoted in published reports as having said it was a GMA-initiative. Of course, no evidence was offered as proof to back up the probably slip-of-the-lips remark, other than taking potshots at Solicitor-General Eduardo Nachura.

Within a month or so, the Supreme Court is expected to issue a ruling on the people's initiative petition. Whatever the outcome, it is best to remember the wisdom of Cabinet's Secretary Saludo: respect for other's views which, this time, would be the High Court's decision.


LOCAL FRONT: Tropical storm "Milenyo" made a landfall off Samar and the rest of Southern Luzon as I write this piece. In this stormy scenario, the Provincial Disaster Management Office(PDMO) was already on alert early on for any possible untoward reports spawned by the inclement weather. Luckily, Southern Leyte, like Leyte province, was under public storm signal number 1 yet, although rains continued to pour the past two days already. Let us all pray nothing unusual would happen as the weather improves sooner back to normal.

ODDLY YOURS: There is nothing peanuts about nuts. Once considered as a high-fat kind of snack, nuts are gaining reputation as health food for the heart. This conclusion was reached after a long-term analysis of the diet, health and exercise habits of 22,000 doctors-no ordinary mortals, my dear, but authorities on health, nutrition, and medicine. Fittingly enough, this was called the Physicians' Health Study. "Researchers at the Harvard Medical School found that men who ate a couple of handful of nuts each week had a 47% lower risk of sudden death due to cardiac arrest than those who ate nuts less often" according to Reader's Digest, November 2202 issue. So, happy eating, with nuts, that is-to your heart's content. (PIA-Southern Leyte) [top]

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