NSA Gonzales backs Puno's 'social volcano' warning and 'call for transition government'
by Louie Ceniza
Butuan City (16 June) -- National Security Adviser Norberto Gonzales on Sunday said he agreed with Chief Justice Reynato Puno that the country is "like a volcano that is about to erupt."
"It is good that no less than the country's Chief Justice himself sounded off the warning about our critical national situation," Gonzales said. Puno made the remark in his Independence Day speech at the Bonifacio Monument earlier this week.
Gonzales also supported Puno's call for unity to save the country. He said only fundamental reforms for societal transformation can lift the country from its present state and this requires national unity.
Gonzales said he did not take Puno's call for unity as that for the administration and the noisy segment of the opposition to come together. Instead, he believes it was a call for the entire government and key societal institutions to get their act together in saving the country.
"The call of the time is for the three major branches of government, supported by key pillars of our society like the Churches, civil society and mass movements, to agree to a transitional government respected by the armed forces," the national security chief declared.
Gonzales said the country is like a volcano because the people have long been yearning for societal transformation that will uplift their welfare but this yearning remains unfulfilled.
Gonzales has been advocating for transitional presidency since 2003, saying only a transitional presidency can carry out the fundamental reforms the country needs to move forward. He has said he is concerned that a routine 2010 election will only perpetuate the country's long-existing sorry state.
"Judging from our present crop of presidentiables, we will just have more of the same elite and bad politics in 2010," he has said.
"It is time we put an end to our recurring political crisis by really pursuing societal transformation. A transition government now can start this undertaking," Gonzales said.
According to the Malacanang official, among the fundamental reforms which a transition government should undertake are electoral reforms to truly empower the people to choose their leaders and shift in the system of governance to free the nation from very costly elections and from paralyzing stalemates among institutions and political forces. (NSC/PIA-Caraga) [top]