MANILA, Philippines—Former president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo unleashed a barrage of criticisms against President Aquino for vilifying her before the bar of public opinion and accused him of trying to erase her legacy.
In a paper read at a press conference at the Manila Hotel, Arroyo highlighted the achievements of her nine-year presidency but derided the performance of the almost two-year-old Aquino administration.
“Indeed, it’s so easy to claim achievements that have already been accomplished by others, and take credit for what is there when the one who did the work has gone. Just make sure she is forgotten, or, if remembered, vilified,” said Arroyo.
Arroyo, who now represents Pampanga in Congress but is under hospital arrest on a charge of electoral sabotage, left no stone unturned in her sweeping criticism of Aquino contained in a 19-page “economic paper” read by University of the Philippines economics professor Gonzalo Jurado.
“Neither the President nor anyone else can truly expect to govern the next five years with nothing but a sorry mix of vilification, periodically recycled promises of action followed by lethargy, backed up by few if any results, and presumptuously encouraging gossip about one’s love life in which no one can possibly be interested,” said Arroyo.
Arroyo defended the gains of her administration in the economic, educational and political spheres, but blasted Aquino for allegedly systematically erasing her legacy by the “use of black propaganda and character assassination as tools of the trade.”
She said Aquino had no “will and the skill to properly navigate such uncertain waters,” referring to the various crises that confronted his administration starting with the bungled Luneta hostage situation in 2010, failure to rescue Filipinos from death row in China, failure to promptly evacuate Filipinos during the Japan earthquake, and inability to secure the safety of overseas workers from the political unrest in Libya.
She scored Aquino for the continued high poverty incidence in the country, and inability to shield the country from the global economic crisis by uncertain economic policies.
Current Events in Philippines
By Michael Lim Ubac
Philippine Daily Inquirer