Press Release
October 30, 2006

Biazon Cautions Against Replacing DND Sec Cruz

Senator Rodolfo G Biazon said the President had been wrongly advised by her advisers on the issues of Presidential Proclamation 1017; Calibrated Preemptive Response; E.O. 464; Memorandum Circular 108 and pushing for a peoples initiative as a means of revising the Constitution.

No less than the Supreme Court had through its rulings proven that these measures pushed by Malacanang were unconstitutional.

Biazon cautioned, If the President again follows her advisers on the issue of national security for Defense Secretary Avelino Nonong Cruz to be replaced because of the Secretarys stand on the issue of a peoples initiative or constituent assembly of Congress to effect a revision of the Constitution, this will be wrong move.

Secretary Cruz has undertaken a campaign of reforms for the AFP to strengthen professionalism, integrity and credibility of the AFP jointly with the Senate Committee on National Defense and Security which includes the adoption of a new National Defense Act; restructuring of the AFP RSBS; the Philippine Defense Reform Program, and the AFP participation in election duties, among others.

These reforms could be derailed if the Secretary is replaced by people who may be recommending his replacement to push their own political agenda, Biazon further warned.

The stand taken by Defense Secretary Cruz on the issue is an indication of his institutionalist and constitutionalist tendency.

This is what many of the institutions of this country including the Armed Forces of the Philippines needs towards strengthening our basic institutions. This is what Secretary Cruz can impart upon the AFP if we are looking at enhancing professionalism and building it as a reliable institution for democracy.

It will be a pity if the Defense Department will loose the influence and leadership of Secretary Cruz, Biazon concluded.

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