‘Time to Go: A Call to Our Colleagues in Government’
We are former government officials who have held high positions in the current and
previous administrations. Having participated in the highest level of governance up close
and personal, we now feel compelled to speak up for our demoralized public servants and
arrest the decline of our institutions of governance. In the past, many of us kept quiet,
going on about our daily chores, attending to business as usual.
However, over the last few days, we, together with the rest of the country, have seen one
man — Jun Lozada — finally decide that he can no longer be part of the massive graft and
corruption that permeates this government. His testimony exposed that the corruption in
the project he dealt with — the NBN-ZTE project — is standard in what he called
“dysfunctional government procurement processes.”
Clearly, what Jun Lozada knew so terrified the powers-that-be that they unwittingly
exposed what Jun called “the dark side of the state” — state-sponsored terrorism that had
been rearing its ugly head in the various disappearances and extrajudicial killings in the
past six years — and which almost took him as a victim in a botched kidnapping that the
administration has been trying, with little success, to cover up.
In a sense, all Jun Lozada did was to confirm what we already know: our country is
sliding into moral decadence. He also confirmed the systematic destruction of our
democratic institutions and the systemic nature of our problems. We have seen this in the
wanton disregard of checks-and-balances; abuse of the powers of the President; the
cooptation through patronage and outright bribery of the other branches of government;
politically sponsored corruption, facilitated, not thwarted, by bureaucratic procedures; the
naked us of power and authority through the PNP (Philippine National Police), PSG
(Presidential Security Group), NAIA (Ninoy Aquino International Airport), among
others, to strangle the truth; and the deployment of cabinet, sub-cabinet officials, and the
military to obstruct justice and cover up illegal orders and acts.
In the past, for too many times that we were confronted with threats to our democracy and
moral values, our response was: “What can we do about it? What is our choice” who will
lead us?”
These questions persist but, today, we can no longer stay silent. We can no longer ignore
the reality of a government gone wild, wreaking havoc on our rights and institutions in a
climate of impunity. We can no longer console ourselves in the strength of the peso,
narrowing deficits, and an expanding economy. Even these ephemeral gains have not
translated into a better life for the majority of our people, especially the poor.
The future of our country is at stake. Our democratic institutions are under attack. What
we stand to lost is the moral fabric of our society.
We call on all government officials — Cabinet secretaries, undersecretaries, heads of
agencies — who know about these anomalous transactions to join the heroic stand of Jun
Lozada to come forward and speak out. We call on all those who know about the
extrajudicial killings and disappearances to go public and tell the truth. We call on all
those who can no longer endure this wrongful governance, with its structures of evil and
unmoderated greed: IT IS TIME TO CUT CLEAN! IT IS TIME TO GO!
Tama na! Sobra na! Panahon na!
1. Florencio Abad (Former Secretary, Department of Education)
2. Tomas Africa (Former Administrator, National Statistics Office)
3. Tomas Apacible (Former Undersecretary, Department of Finance OR
commissioner, bureau of Customs)
4. Senon Bacani (Former Secretary, Department of Agriculture)
5. Gerardo Bulatao (Former Undersecretary, Department of Agrarian Reform)
6. Clifford Burkley (Former Undersecretary, Department of Social Work and
7. Jose Cuisia (Former Governor, Bang Sentral ng Pilipinas)
8. Sostenes Campillo (Former Undersecretary, Department of Tourism)
9. Karina Constatino-David (Former Chair, Civil Service Commission)
10. Elfren Cruz (Former Head, Presidential Management Staff)
11. Teresita Quintos Delos (Former Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process)
12. Benjamin Diokno (Former Secretary-General, National Economic Development
13. Franklin Drilon (Former Executive Secretary)
14. Jesus Estanislao (Former Secretary, Department of Finance)
15. Fulgencio Factoran Jr. (Former Secretary, Department of Environment and
Natural Resources)
16. Victoria Garchitorena (Former Head, presidential Management Staff)
17. Ernesto Garilao (Former Secretary, Department of Agrarian Reform)
18. Jose Luis Gascon (Former Undersecretary, Department of Education)
19. Marietta Goco (Former Chair, Presidential Commission to Fight Poverty)
20. Jose Antonio Gonzalez (Former Minister, Ministry of Tourism)
21. Milwilda Guevarra (Former Undersecretary, Department of Finance)
22. Cielito Habito (Former Secretary-General, National Economic Development
23. Edilberto de Jesus, Jr. (Former Secretary, Department of Education)
24. Antonio La Vina (Former Undersecretary, Department of Environment and
Natural Resources)
25. Benjamin Laguesma (Former Secretary, Department of Labor and Employment)
26. Lina Laigo (Former Secretary, Department of Social Welfare and Development)
27. Ernest Leung (Former Secretary, Department of Finance)
28. Josefina Lichauco (Former Secretary, Department of Transportation and
29. Narzalina Lim (Former Secretary, Department of Tourism)
30. Juan Miguel Luz (Former Undersecretary, Department of Education)
31. Felipe Medalla (Former Secretary-General, National Economic Development
32. Vitaliano Nañagas (Former President, Development Bank of the Philippines)
33. Imelda Nicolas (Former Lead Convenor, National Anti-Poverty Commission)
34. Ernesto Ordoñez (Former Undersecretary, Presidential Flagship Programs and
35. Victor Ordoñez (Former Undersecretary, Department of Education)
36. Vicente Paterno (Former Minister, Ministry of Trade and Industry)
37. Jose Pardo (Former Secretary, Department of Finance)
38. Cesar Purisima (Former Secretary, Department of Finance)
39. Victor Ramos (Former Secretary, Department of Environment and Natural
40. Amina Rasul (Former Chair, National Youth Commission)
41. Albert Del Rosario (Former Ambassador to United States of America)
42. Francisco Del Rosario (Former Chair, Development Bank of the Philippines)
43. Ramon Del Rosario (Former Secretary, Department of Finance)
44. Melito Salazar (Former member of the Monetary Board, Bangko Sentral ng
45. Leticia Ramos-Shahani (Former Undersecretary, Department of Foreign Affairs)
46. Cesar Sarino (Former Secretary, Department of Interior and Local Government)
47. Juan Santos (Former Secretary, Department of Trade and Industry)
48. Corazon Juliano-Soliman (Former Secretary, Department of Social Welfare and
49. Hector Soliman (Former Undersecretary, Department of Agrarian Reform)
50. Mario Taguiwalo (Former Undersecretary, Department of Health)
51. Wigberto Tañada (Former Commissioner, Bureau of Customs)
52. Rene Villa (Former Secretary, Department of Agrarian Reform)
53. Veronica F. Villavicencio (Former Lead Convenor, National Anti-Poverty
54. Deogracias Vislan (Former President, Land Bank of the Philippines)