Press Release
November 10, 2011

Kapihan Transcript (part 2)

Q: Sir, yung WB po, nag-issue ulit ng study about difficulty in doing business in the Philippines.

Yun nga ang sinasa bi ko. Hindi lang doing business. Doing business is only one measurement na the world is judging every country. They are judging the doing business aspect in the Philippines, they are judging our state of infrastructure, they are judging the state of education, they are judging the state of governance, and in all these standards, we are miserably failing. And that's why, those of you who are attending the budget hearing, I keep pounding to the economic managers that please don't be stingy in spending, don't be stingy in putting money behind our research and development. Because we have to catch because we are always on in the bottom ¼ of the world. Saka in all tests, wala tayong na--- sana maging middle man lang tayo. Kumbaga sa grades, maging 75 man lang tayo. Pasang-awa. Hindi, bagsak tayo in all tests, eh. So parang numb na tayo, parang we are not paying attention to those items.

Doing business, tignan mo, doing business is so difficult in this country because halimbawa, just to set up business, or let's say, you want to build a house by a big subdivision developer, you are required 13 signatures before you can occupy that house or build that house. If you want to set up a business, andaming mga steps.

Alam nyo, sa buong Asya, sa Southeast Asia, tayo ang pinakamarami at magagandang mga anti-corruption laws. Tayo lang siguro ang may anti-red tape law, or one of those pioneers in passing anti-red tape law.

E bakit - despite the proliferation of anti-graft laws and anti-red tape, tayo ang mga pinaka--- one of the most - sabi nga nila, most corrupt and slowpoke countries in attending to business needs. So, laws don't really make a good country or good officials. It's a culture and in building up that culture of fidelity rules or laws, I think media have the powerful influence. Hindi ba? I think, you are doing already a wonderful job, doing the news reporting. But you must go beyond news reporting and towards education and learning of the populace rather than - just pardon the phrase�rather than thundering to what you perceive the public want to read. We have to go higher.

For instance - this is my favorite example, e. In many countries in the west, especially in the commonwealth countries, if it's budget season, lahat ng page ng newspaper, they analyze the impact of every provision in the budget -- on how it will lift living standards and improve quality of life. Dito, mabuti nga nag-aattend kayo ng budget hearing, e. Marami sa inyo ang masipag, pero generally, walang interes sa budget, e.

Q: (on Gloria) .. halimbawa makalabas sya, may option ba ang gobyerno na mapabalik sya?

Oo. Sa ngayon nga, sabi ko, maliit lang ang mundo, e. At saka ang pressure of international opinion is so great that I think no person was occupied such a high position as she having become chief of state will not submit to international opinion. Yung legality, palagay ko ay secondary. It is the pressure of public opinion. Instantaneous nga yang news, e.

We are arguing over something in the future that may or may not happen. In other words, we are going into speculation. Sabi ko nga, the most hardened criminals, yung talagang murderer or mass murderer pa, hindi sila makpagtago. Always brought to the hay. Ganun din. With more reasons sa public person like her.

Just to be legally strict and formal, kung walang extradition, she can just stay put and not move and nothing will happen. Pero sabi ko, it's beyond the legality - beyond the formality. It is the pressure of international opinion that will move her and she may not want to further erode her legacy and her place in history by becoming a fugitive of law.

Bakit, wala ba syang mga apo to protect? Wala ba syang sense of what she wants to be remembered by?

Q: Can't they just cancel her passport if the host country...

Kaya nga. Those actions will surely compel her to come back. Kung wala na nga syang passport, edi stuck na sya sa Timbuktu. She will be deported by Timbuktu.

Q: Kung may HDO na, justified na ba kung tlagang pigilan sya...

Kailangan, may court determination. Then holding her will be much stronger legally kung may court case at may court order. The government as an institution, neutral yan eh. If you are doing something according to (---), siguro walang issue on legality and perhaps on morality and even ethics.

Q: Sir, do you think, personally giangamit ni pgma yung health condition nya para lang makaalis ng bansa?

I don't think so. I think she's got a genuine ailment.

Q: Sir, wala ka nang communication (sa kanya)?

Wala na. I'm just basing my opinion on what I read.

Q: Suggestion na dapat may escort si GMA...

Puwede rin yun. Puwede yun.

Q: ( death of gma)

Alam nyo, ayoko sumagot ng mga ganyang hypothetical, e, dahil baka hindi naman mangyari, e, tapos you will quote me na "Sabi ni Angara si Delima, ma-aaccuse for manslaughter or .." ayoko sagutin yung mga ganyan.

Q: Between now and next Thursday, cases can be filed? Would that time count (sa timeframe)?

Hindi naman pretense yang rule ng Suprme Court, e. Kung talagang yan ay emergency case requiring immediate action, they can meet anytime.

Q: Sir, kung sinasabi nyo na hindi nya ginagamit yung health condition nya para umalis ng bansa... para sa inyo, puwede syang umalis ng bansa, klaro po yan?

Klaro yan dahil wala - from my point of view as a lawyer, kung walang court order or case in court, hindi puwedeng si Sheriff Dela Cruz will say, "I will hold you" or si Immigartion agent Pedro can hold you. It should be based on a court order or a court complaint. Because you will cooperate with the rule of law, hindi ba?

Q: Sa constitution, ang exemptions sa right to travel are interest of the state, public health and public safety. Ano yung sina-site ni De Lima na national interest. Where does that fall?

There's a potential case and a great case is putting together against her based on violation of election laws. Di ba ganun naman? But in her opinion, and the opinion of the government, is in the national interest. But as you know, national interest is a huge, amorphous concept. You can argue and since you mentioned national interest, you need a court determination on who is right and who is not.

Q: Effective ang computerization para ma improve ang image natin sa business?

Hindi lang naman yung issuance of drivers license and importante. Even the filing of business permit, hindi pa naman computerized yan, e. But the fact that there are so many steps to undertake before you can do business, the fact that there's so much discretion among bureaucrats, they are not even the high bureaucrats - low level pa yan, that he or she can delay your business. So yun ang onset of doing business or hardship in doing business in the Philippines. And apart from our processes, sometimes our processes are corrupt, it's also the lack of infrastructure. Like, you want to do business in an undeveloped province like Samar or Aurora or Leyte or Davao del Norte, the communication infrastructure is not there. Transportation access is not available. And then, in this are, if you don't have access to broadband or to the internet, para kang also, isolated. Dyan mahina tayo. Malakas ang mobile penetration natin, but very low naman ang internet penetration. So, if you combine all of that, and then you compare it with other countries, we rank very poorly. Kumbaga, hatiin mo yang 138 or 140 countries, we always occupy the bottom ¼. That's how poor and poorly we perform.

Q: San tayo magsisimula para ...

We used to be ahead in education and training. We even lost that edge. Infrastructure. Tayo, we are a natural beauty. We are more attractive than other countries visited by tourists, but how come we hardly can get - we are struggling just to get three million tourists and half of that are balikbayans - because wala ngang access, e. kulang. Kulang ang roads, transportasyon. Sometimes, sa aiport pa lang, nahoholdap ka na. yung mga ganun. So, we must improve our education and training. We must improve our taxes through infrastructure and we must improve our peace and order. To me, that's the top three priority.

Q: Alternative sa RH bill

Ayoko naman sabihin na watered-down version, ano. Ganyan ang law making, e. give and take yan, e. it's an exercise in compromise, e. since, the oppositors and they are formidable and heavyweights, you cannot disregard their own opinion, they decide on what to be taken up on the floor, medyo mabigat ang kalaban ko. So you have to give in. try to listen. Ano ba talaga ang ayaw nyo dito. Kung sasabihin nila, 'tlagang ayaw naming itong bill na ito, whatever version' irreconcilable na yan. And the solution there is to put into the floor for voting, for decision. Pero kung sabihin naman nila "ayaw namin dito dahil gagamitin ang public money for abortion' masma nga naman yan. Yung four or five-year old pa lang, tuturuan mo na ng sex education - baka hindi pa nila naiintindihan. So let us try to find out what specifically they object to - do they object to the law as a whole that they just don't want anything that indicates population control or family size planning? I am just trying to anticipate, because we want to - I am sure the oppositors, no matter how hardened they are would like to have a policy on the health of mothers and children di ba? Let us pray to god that they are open. Na-overcome na ng budget debate, e. di ba may rule kami dito, pag nag umpisa na ang budget debate, no other bills can be presented or debated.

Re: Occupy Movement

Noong 1968, nagprotesta ang mga studyante sa Paris dahil sa isang inosenteng regulation ng unibersidad. But that's really just an ostensible reason. They're really complaining about the inequitable, the poor living conditions of the students in France. It caught on worldwide. Dito sa UP, nag-Quarter Storm. Inoccupy nila ang Engineering, sinira pa nila ang Chemistry Department ng UP. It just takes that type of action. Now, in this case, the Occupy Movement is rooted on a more serious cause. Mga kabataan to, not just students. Young people who have no jobs, walang pag-asa sa buhay, they are complaining to the government. Bakit kami walang trabaho, walang ginagawa ang gobyerno pero walang ginagawa ang gobyerno pero pinapayagan nila na ang mga bangko, milyon-milyon, bilyon bilyon ang utang.

Corporate greed and social inequality, tapos wala silang trabaho. This is a gathering storm. If we don't act fast enough and try to remedy the inequity in our own needs--sapagkat ang income inequality sa Pilipinas ay napaka-wide and deep.

Q: Possibility of Occupy Wall Street movement in the Philippines

I think it's more than a possibility--it's a probability. Nag-umpisa yan sa Spain--highest incidence of unemployment in the whole of the West. 20% of their labor force are unemployed. Then it spread to Wall Street, then the entire US--80 cities in the States.

Sa Europe, almost all the capital cities have Occupy movements. I'll not be surprised if the contagion spreads to us. Because of the nature of real-time communication and rapid updates on TV and on the internet, other modes of social media.

Like what happened to Arab Spring. It all started over an innocuous incident. This peddler was prevented by a policeman from selling, nagca-altercation. The young people of the Arab world saw what was happening and then sumiklab na. From Tunisia to Egypt to Bahrain, it just takes one small spark to cause a conflagration because of the speed of communication. We can see what is happening all over the world in a split second, almost instantaneously.

Q: Impact of constitutional change to the businesses

Constitutional change is a protracted process. Probably it will not make an immediate impact. What will make an immediate impact are the administrative reforms or even congressional reforms--administrative reforms because those need only the signature of the President or a Cabinet member to effect change.

So kelangan talaga may consciousness that we want to change, to improve our procedures and processes. Kung business as usual, patay tayo.

Q: Reduced expenses in the 2012 budget?

Yes, realignment. May mga na-reduce. Halimbawa, sa SUCs, yan hung hinandle ko. Their udget was reduced by about 144 million. Kasi some of their maintenance money, some of their MOOE and personnel money were embargoed--hindi ba yun yung nireklamo ng Supreme Court, nilagay sa miscellaneous. One of the side effects of that is some of the money of the SUCs ay nadamay. So ang total reduction ng SUCs, around 144 to 146 million.

But Senator Drilon and I put together other measures that will give almost 400 million to the SUCs. Mafi-fill up naman yung shortages, and more. But it's targeted now, dedicated to the "innovation clusters". We will identify outstanding state universities and colleges na pwedeng suportahan in terms of research and that will attract the industry and the government research institutions to provide additional money. It's a multiplier.

It's a good design. It will nominally be seen as a reduction because some of their money was embargoed, but we made it up and more and really signed some academic programs that ultimately will be better for them.

I think it's a positive. I think the budget, as a whole, is about 10 percent bigger than the 2011 budget.

Q: Can we finish the debates in four days?

I think so. Wala nang contention? I think meron pa rin, pero those would not require one or two weeks to debate them.

Difference between the HOR and Senate budget--more of focusing. In terms of increases--may mga dinagdag kami. First week of December matatapos yan, then three days of conference committee, then bicam. Mid-December, mapapasa yan.

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