.- In a statement released at the conclusion of their general assembly, the Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines expressed its opposition to calls to impeach President Gloria Arroyo for alleged voter fraud during the 2004 elections.
Read by the Conference president, Archbishop Angel Lagdameo of Jaro, the statement warned that while the bishops respected, “the position of individuals or groups that wish to continue using the impeachment process to arrive at the truth," the mind-set of both sides must be guided only by genuine concern for the common good. The impeachment process would only, “serve as an unproductive political exercise, dismaying every citizen and deepening citizens' negative perception of politicians, left, right and center,” they said.
The bishops also urged reform of the fraud-tainted Commission on Elections, saying that calls for, "resignation or even prosecution of a number of the commissioners should not be lightly brushed aside. The electoral process, including counting of votes, needs to be reformed and modernized before the next elections."