Jose Camano, who migrated to the States after being disbarred by the Supreme Court due to an ethical (moral some would say) issue (extortion case with his partner the present MMDA chairman), says that what the hell are we talking about? The 1987 Constitution, says Camano is clear---there will be no vacancy in the post of the president simply because she is still the Chief Executive until June 30. So, why are sectors and quarters all thinking about filling a "vacancy" when there is none?
Camano is right--Mrs. Arroyo will still be president until June 30. The question that everybody is finding or looking for a solution is simply this--who will be her successor come June 30.
If, say, this election fail, and God knows I don't want it to fail, how then will we resolve the issue of succession? If the automated elections prolong the count, especially if it conducts a parallel count, and Comelec fails to transmit the results of the elections prior to the opening of Congress, who will then be proclaimed as president? That is the issue, Mr. Camano.
The concern for the period of May 10 to May 20 is legitimate since Mrs. Arroyo is in the running as Congresswoman of Pampanga. If she is running AND manning the fort as well, how will the results of the elections in Pampanga be as clean and of the highest integrity? Anyway, that's beside the point. Some say that will be the trigger that will surely launch a coup against her. That period, some analysts think, is the period where executive power is at its weakest and most vulnerable. For security analysts, who clearly understand the dynamics of politics, that is the supposed "clink" in the armor of invinsibility of Mrs. Arroyo.
Let me explain to former Atty. Camano, who is now hiding in the States after that extortion case he committed here in the Philippines, that this period is critical to the survival of democracy in the Philippines for 4 simple reasons:
1. This is the period of counting, the most important leg of the elections. If the results are questionable due to tampering (either automated or manual), that will trigger massive public reaction, even outrage. That is a security issue.
2. If, during the period of counting, a massive rally erupts and certain sectors question the preliminary results of the count, that is also a potential, if not, a serious security issue.
3. One of the possible scenarios being discussed wildly in certain rounds is the possibility of Mrs. Arroyo and her gang activating her "close associates" in the military for a possible takeover of government. This is where I take the PMA Class 1978 to task---they told me that they will not Mrs. Arroyo to be the "caretaker" of the government, while waiting for the final results. IT will be better, says one of the members of PMA Class 1978, to just allow her to just "fade away" to exile or retirement. Meaning, they will not even allow her to even serve as Congresswoman should she win this coming elections.
4. This is when the supposed "vacuum" exists, when there is a failure to proclaim a winner. Remember that the elections is not just about voting and counting the results, no. The conclusion of any elections is the proclamation of the winner. If this elections will not lead to a favorable interpretation of the results from all groups, then, that will justify a takeover.
All sectors whom I talked with says that this elections is the final one. This is the last straw, so to speak. This is the last democratic option left available before anyone decides to move against Gloria. If this election still fails to proclaim a legitimate successor, then, anything is entirely possible.
So, Mr. Camano, this is not as simple as one accepting a client then going to the other side to accept an offer for a huge sum of money. No Joe, this cannot be remedied by extortion. And this is even not interpreting any Constitutional provision which is entirely silent on the matter. This is about anticipating possible dire consequences, which, unfortunately, your mind cannot grasp. This is not about law. This is about power, and the struggle of groups in our society.