Quick, Peaceful and Just Resolution
Prayer Rally, EDSA Shrine
November 4, 2000
This is not the first time that His Eminence, Jaime Cardinal Sin, you and I have met at this shrine — a shrine to freedom and to God's protection over His people.
I also know that it will not be the last — because, if we keep faith with God and with one another — we will meet here again, in thanksgiving, to mark the triumph of the good and the just.
Nagtipon-tipon tayo dita upang manalangin sa Panginaon — ngunit hindi lamangpara sa ating mga sarili.
We pray for peace, for courage, and for wisdom. We also pray that Almighty God bestow these blessings not only on those assembled here at EDSA — but more so on the man who caused all these problems on our people.
Of course, I speak of President Joseph Ejercito Estrada — who now needs all the humility, composure, courage, and since with faith in God nothing is impossible, the WISDOM to help him make the most momentous decision of his life.
We gather, not in anger, but in charity, not out of desperation but because of hope. We are here to build, not destroy our nation — and to save, rather than ruin, the Presidency.
Tayong mga nandito sa EDSA ay hindi naparito para guluhin o sirain ang Panguluan, kundi upang ibalik ito sa landas ng katwiran.
You and I have embarked on a course of action that bears the gravest consequences for all our countrymen. In the past three weeks, we have asked the President — our elected leader — to step down from office.
Today we pray that he will make the prudent choice, and that he will find the charity in his heart to spare the nation the prolonged and divisive agony of impeachment.
Five days ago, President Estrada went on national television to announce that he was taking steps to correct some of the worst instances of cronyism under his regime, and that he wanted a reconciliatory dialogue between himself and his most prominent critics.
A laudable gesture, but again it was all too little, too late. In fact it was painful admission of how badly his administration has served the people.
Sadly it was a poor attempt to address the issues of the day, while still side-stepping the most tangible concern of our people: his unwillingness to come clean and tell the TRUTH.
Paano tayo maniniwala at magtitiwala sa isang Pangulong hindi man lang makatugon sa mga napakalalang paratang sa kanyang pagkatao? At sa halip na katotohanan, ang iniharap niya sa atin ay ang panakot ng karahasan.
We deserved and always deserve the TRUTH. Instead, the President chose to confront us, with a badly orchestrated, poorly produced, ill-advised thinly veiled threat of force.
We now ask our brothers and sisters in the Armed Forces and the PNP to recognize that the right of citizens to peaceful protest is enshrined in the Constitution. Be one with us, as you were in EDSA, and protect your people from those who would use you, for their own selfish ends.
Nananawagan kami sa ating mga kapatid sa militar at pulisya. Ipagtanggol ninyo kami — tulad nang ginawa ninyo sa EDSA — sa mga tunay na kaaway ng taumbayan.
Mr, President, you were not here with us at the EDSA Revolution. Yet you now cloak yourself with the Constitution at EDSA made possible, the very same Constitution which only last year, you unsuccessfully, through the efforts of the same people gathered here, tried to subvert.
I say, let that Constitution prevails above all else, and let him have his day in court. This will take time, and the gravity of the process should warrant that due diligence be given. But should our economy and our government be held hostage by this arduous, though necessary process?
The President must accept that the greatest threat to our economy and to our national security today is his compromised and ineffectual leadership.
Mr. President, our economy's recovery and our society's healing can begin NOW, if you yield to selflessness and voluntarily resign.
Mr. President, kayo ang pinagmulan ng ating paghihirap ngayon, kayo ang nagkamali, kayo ang problema!
You must display your willingness to face the truth and the consequences of your actions. We Filipinos are a forgiving people, you can still repent — after yielding your job to someone who will do it better.
Mr. President, take it from me: there is life after Malacañang. History may treat you more kindly if you go PEACEFULLY and you go NOW!
Ngayon ka na magbitiw, Mr. President. Even the best actor knows when it's time to take his final bow!
Whatever happens, the task of nation-building will go on after Erap. We must continue to seek new ways of people empowernent, of lifting the Filipinos from material and moral poverty.
We pray for those who would take over the reins of government, that they may always hold themselves accountable to God and to the people. Responsible citizenship and accountable leadership go hand in hand in true nation-building.
May mga nagsasabing ang mga Pilipino daw ay hindi na natuto. Sa pagtitipon natin muli dito sa EDSA, pinapatunayan natin sa buong mundo — NATUTO NA TAYO. Hindi na natin ipagkakatiwala ang pamumuno ng pamahalaan sa nagnanais lamang na yumaman mula sa dugo 't pawis ng sambayanan. Hindi na tayo muling papayag na nakawin ang kinabukasan ng ating bayan.
We pray to God that He grant us a quick, peaceful, and just resolution to our current national crisis. We pray for strength and vigilance to carry on our fight, and above all else that goodness and justice will triumph; and once again, the best of Filipinos — and the best in the Filipino — will prevail.
ALLOW ME NOW TO PAY TRIBUTE TO A MAN WHOSE SPIRITUAL LEADERSHIP, COURAGE AND STRENGTH IN HIS MORAL CONVICTIONS HAS CONSISTENTLY PAVED THE WAY FOR EACH ONE OF US TO FOLLOW THE RIGHT PATH. IN A NATION OF MANY VOICES, HIS HAS STOOD OUT BECAUSE HE HAS ALWAYS BEEN ABLE TO GALVANIZE HIS FLOCK TO ACTION. WITHOUT HIM, THE DEMOCRACY BORNE OUT OF THE EDSA PEOPLE POWER REVOLUTION WOULD NOT HAVE BEEN POSSIBLE. AND BECAUSE OF HIM, WE PROUDLY ARE UNITED TODAY. A MAN OF GOD, A MAN WE FILIPINOS CAN PROUDLY UPHOLD AS OUR SYMBOL OF FREEDOM. LET US NOW RENDER OUR GRATITUDE WITH THUNDEROUS APPLAUSE, AS WE THANK GOD FOR BLESSING US, WITH A GREAT FILIPINO LIKE CARDINAL SIN.
Magtiwala tayo sa Maykapal, na mananaig ang kabutihan, at muling bumangon ang sambayanang Pilipino.
Maraming salamat po, at mahuhay tayong lahat.