Destab is meant to derail Arroyo’s plunder cases
By Raissa Robles
Navy Colonel Generoso Mariano, who called for President Benigno Aquino’s ouster in a video, met with people associated with former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, according to Presidential Communications Strategy Secretary Ricky Carandang.
Ordinarily, I try not to disturb sources on Sundays but yesterday I felt justified in calling Secretary Carandang to find out what he thought about this “creeping coup”. [My hubby Alan called it that and I think he’s right.] Besides, I was beating a deadline for my newspaper South China Morning Post (HK).
I asked Carandang what Mariano’s video was all about and what could have possibly prompted it.
Carandang did not mince words. He told me:
Forces sympathetic or associated with the former president have been trying to agitate the military for a while and are expected to keep trying as the noose tightens around Arroyo’s neck.
Carandang also told me that before the video – stamped with the date July 3 – was uploaded onto the internet, Naval Reserve Command deputy commander Generoso Mariano “went to a meeting organized or supported by elements associated with the former president.”
He also said the destabilization move was “not unexpected.”
Personally, I’m not surprised by this turn of events. I had been expecting it sooner than later because of what a very close friend of mine, who has dealt personally with ex-President Arroyo, told me last year.
My friend told me that Arroyo will stop at nothing to escape being brought to court. And that would include fleeing the country to a place with no extradition treaty with Manila and military destabilization.
We mustn’t forget that Arroyo herself has been on both sides of this political play. She has been the object of military coups. But at the same time, the Edsa 2 ouster of President Joseph Estrada turned out to be part of a long-term plot by the Arroyo camp to unseat Estrada and replace him with then Vice-President Arroyo.
Recall that active military generals like Edgardo Espinosa were actively plotting against Estrada and talking directly with VP Arroyo.
President Aquino is no babes in the woods either when it comes to coup attempts. Recall that he nearly died during one such coup attempt. During Arroyo’s time, Aquino accompanied his mother Corazon to Fort Bonifacio when marine colonel Ariel Querubin called for “people power”.
I was told (not by Carandang but by someone else inside the Aquino camp) that PNoy had appointed early on an “Arroyo minder” – one who keeps close watch on the movements of ex-President Arroyo, her relatives and political allies.
Of course, the best deterrent to such destabilization efforts is good governance and solid accomplishments in the reduction of poverty, crime and prices of basic goods.