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 use of power and authority through the PNP, PSG, NAIA, 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 to our 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 lose 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!

Signed by:

1. Florencio Abad (Former Secretary, Department of Education)
2. Tomas Africa, (Former Administrator, National Statistics Office)
3. Rafael Alunan (Former Secretary, Department of Tourism)
4. Tomas Apacible (Former Commissioner, Bureau of Customs)
5. Senen Bacani (Former Secretary, Department of Agriculture)
6. Angelito Banayo (Former Secretary, Political Affairs)
7. Romeo Bernardo (Former Undersecretary, Department of Finance)
8. Gerardo Bulatao (Former Undersecretary, Department of Agrarian Reform)
9. Clifford Burkley (Former Undersecretary, Department of Social Welfare and Development)
10. Ramon Cardenas (Former Head, Presidential Management Staff)
11. Jose Cuisia (Former Governor, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas)
12. Sostenes Campillo (Former Undersecretary, Department of Tourism)
13. Karina Constantino-David (Former Chair, Civil Service Commission)
14. Elfren Cruz (Former Head, Presidential Management Staff)
15. Isagani Cruz (Former Undersecretary, Department of Education)
16. Teresita Quintos Deles (Former Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process)
17. Benjamin Diokno (Former Secretary, Department of Budget and Management)
18. Quintin Doromal Sr. (Former Commissioner, Philippine Commission on Good Governance)
19. Franklin Drilon (Former Executive Secretary)
20. Narcisa Escaler (Former Ambassador to the United Nations)
21. Jesus Estanislao (Former Secretary, Department of Finance)
22. Fulgencio Factoran Jr. (Former Secretary, Department of Environment and Natural Resources)
23. Victoria Garchitorena (Former Head, Presidential Management Staff)
24. Ernesto Garilao (Former Secretary, Department of Agrarian Reform)
25. Peter Garrucho (Former Executive Secretary)
26. Jose Luis Gascon (Former Undersecretary, Department of Education)
27. Marietta Goco (Former Chair, Presidential Commission to Fight Poverty)
28. Jose Antonio Gonzalez (Former Minister, Ministry of Tourism)
29. Milwilda Guevarra (Former Undersecretary, Department of Finance)
30. Cielito Habito (Former Director-General, National Economic and Development Authority)
31. Edilberto de Jesus Jr. (Former Secretary, Department of Education)
32. Philip Ella Juico (Former Secretary, Department of Agrarian Reform)
33. Antonio La Viña (Former Undersecretary, Department of Environment and Natural Resources)
34. Bienvenido Laguesma (Former Secretary, Department of Labor and Employment)
35. Lina Laigo (Former Secretary, Department of Social Welfare and Development)
36. Ernest Leung (Former Secretary, Department of Finance)
37. Josefina Lichauco (Former Secretary, Department of Transportation and Communications)
38. Narzalina Lim (Former Secretary, Department of Tourism)
39. Juan Miguel Luz (Former Undersecretary, Department of Education)
40. Felipe Medalla (Former Director-General, National Economic and Development Authority)
41. Jose Molano Jr. (Former Executive Director, Commission on Filipinos Overseas)
42. Vitaliano Nañagas (Former Chair, Development Bank of the Philippines)
43. Imelda Nicolas (Former Lead Convenor, National Anti-Poverty Commission)
44. Roberto de Ocampo (Former Secretary, Department of Finance)
45. Oscar Orbos (Former Executive Secretary)
46. Ernesto Ordoñez (Former Secretary, Presidential Flagship Programs and Projects)
47. Victor Ordoñez (Former Undersecretary, Department of Education)
48. Cayetano Paderanga (Former Director-General, National and Economic Development Authority)
49. Jose Pardo (Former Secretary, Department of Trade and Industry)
50. Vicente Paterno (Former Minister, Ministry of Trade and Industry)
51. Felicito Payumo (Former Chairman, Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority)
52. Pete Prado (Former Secretary, Department of Transportation and Communication)
53. Cesar Purisima (Former Secretary, Department of Finance)
54. Victor Ramos (Former Secretary, Department of Environment and Natural Resources)
55. Amina Rasul (Former Chair, National Youth Commission)
56. Alberto Romualdez Jr. (Former Secretary, Department of Health)
57. Albert del Rosario (Former Ambassador to the United States of America)
58. Francisco del Rosario (Former Chair, Development Bank of the Philippines)
59. Ramon del Rosario (Former Secretary, Department of Finance)
60. Melito Salazar (Former Member of the Monetary Board, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas)
61. Leticia Ramos-Shahani (Former Undersecretary, Department of Foreign Affairs)
62. Cesar Sarino (Former Secretary, Department of Interior and Local Government)
63. Juan Santos (Former Secretary, Department of Trade and Industry)
64. Corazon Juliano-Soliman (Former Secretary, Department of Social Welfare and Development)
65. Hector Soliman (Former Undersecretary, Department of Agrarian Reform)
66. Mario Taguiwalo (Former Undersecretary, Department of Health)
67. Jaime Galvez Tan (Former Secretary, Department of Health)
68. Wigberto Tañada (Former Commissioner, Bureau of Customs)
69. Rene Villa (Former Secretary, Department of Agrarian Reform)
70. Veronica Villavicencio (Former Lead Convenor, National Anti-Poverty Commission)
71. Deogracias Vistan (Former President, Land Bank of the Philippines)


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