In the same way that someone is presumed innocent until proven guilty, everyone is assumed honest until otherwise established as corrupt. This is the way of a fair people, the norm of a civil community, the system of just laws. The opposite wherefore is not only offensive to reason but also contrary to social justice. That is why it can be said that there could readily emerge social disorder and public disharmony, not to mention pervasive injustice and profound inequity, in the event that the presumption of corruption premised on the assumption of guilt, ever become the norm of pre-tainted thinking followed by the consequent cause for punitive action.
But what if a given administration has been wallowing in a long litany of duly exposed big and scandalous corrupt deals and devious practices, has wherefore received definitely more than one public dreadful citation for corruption according to the judgment not only by national and regional but also international fora? What if someone has been uncovered as involved not only in corrupt but also corrupting action and reaction patterns, and has wherefore in fact consistently received one very negative trust rating after another practically throughout the latter’s tenure of power and influence? What if a particularly high public Official supposedly in a position of an equally high public trust, instead customarily engages in self-service for personal interests in conjunction with the disbursement huge public funds? In this concrete case, could the presumption of integrity still be sincerely, reasonably and objectively upheld?
More. The recent climate catastrophe in the Country that wasted many lives, that destroyed much assets and that continues to haunt and challenge the Filipino spirit, expectedly called the attention of the international community. In solidarity with the already poor and still impoverished thousands of Filipino families, different countries already sent their much appreciated rescue and/or relief services. Such was the gravity and extent of the devastation that even the United Nations (UN) decided to send its assistance in cash and in kind to the Philippines. The humiliating factor in all these grants and donations is that they are being sent to this Country specifically under the “Presumption of Corruption” made by the said composite universal donor.
In other words, the UN knows only too well what kind of many high public officials this suffering Country has – specially on the occasion of the incumbency of the present administration. In short, many qualifying terms and phrases can be said about the present government – except the presumption of integrity. In brief, Malacanang “enjoys” the Presumption of Corruption. This is so painful to say yet too fallacious to deny, very shameful to affirm yet highly hypocritical to deny. The ground reality is that even the incumbent administration is gone when its supreme leader is a Malacanang tenant no more and even when the latter’s allies members have opted for private lives if ever, rightly or wrongly the presumption of corruption would in all probability follow them still. And that indeed is a stiff moral price to pay for.
October 21, 2009