‘Reach out to all bets, not dynasties’



While other Catholic prelates have endorsed specific candidates, the Archbishop of Cagayan de Oro City has urged his flock to be “pan-partisan” but to junk political dynasties.

In a four-page pastoral letter, Archbishop Antonio J. Ledesma, S.J. said exercising pan-partisanship meant “reaching out to all political affiliations” while voting against political dynasties, going against vote selling and vote buying, and caring for the environment.

“To be partisan in Philippine politics does not necessarily mean to side with one party only … voters are expected to follow their conscience in choosing public officials that will serve the common good and help in the development of their community,” said former CBCP vice president Ledesma in a report on the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) website.

On March 3, Ledesma led the Mindanao launch of the Movement Against Dynasties (MAD) at the St. Augustine Metropolitan Cathedral in Cagayan de Oro.

“Political dynasties are correlated with corruption because there are no longer checks and balances when people from the same families are in office and helping one another,” Ledesma said.

He noted that studies conducted by the University of the Philippines, Ateneo de Manila University and the Asian Institute of Management all showed a correlation between political dynasties and corruption, poverty and violence.

“The larger the political dynasties in the government, the more poverty seems to persist in our economy,” he said, adding that another study showed that at least 70 percent of the country’s public officials belonged to a political dynasty.

“It is, I think, a sad commentary that our leadership cannot be more widely spread among people who are perhaps more competent, more conscientious and more committed than members of political dynasties,” Ledesma said.

The prelate reminded everyone that the Constitution includes provisions against political dynasties.

“As monopolies in business, monopolies in politics limit the entry of those that can bring in new ideas and better service. Political dynasties breed corruption and ineptitude,” Ledesma said.

“A related advocacy is the campaign against pork barrel allocations—which impels political dynasties to expand in order to control the largesse of public funds,” he said.

Ledesma’s archdiocese has also launched an “Our Votes are Not for Sale” campaign against the “rampant” practice of vote buying.

“More profoundly, vote buying as well as vote selling are offenses against the dignity of the voter himself who exchanges his reasoning and freedom for a fleeting sum of money,” Ledesma said.

The archbishop also urged the public to always remember the lessons of Tropical Storm “Sendong,” which devastated areas of northern Mindanao in December 2011.

“Typhoon Sendong has taught us the bitter lessons from the wanton degradation of our watershed areas surrounding the Cagayan de Oro River and other tributaries. The continued bleeding of the Iponan River through hydraulic flush mining also has to be stopped,” Ledesma said.

“The rehabilitation and protection of our environment should be a pan-partisan concern of all candidates for public office,” he added.

The archbishop also urged voters to “choose candidates with the five C’s” or those who have “Character, Conscience, Competence, Compassion and Commitment.”

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  • Fancy Tan

    Stop “Dynasty” to get rid of “The Nasty” politicians.

  • Guest

    This bishop deserves a thumbs up…Finally a bishop with healthy ideas…NO to Dynasties, NO to votebuying, NO to any kind of corruption, especially in election time..Politicians, show a decent party-program and tell us what you stand for..Keep your promises and stop cheating..

    • buttones

      I agree, the bishop said it very well, but it’s not that easy, very often one is given the Comelec choice of one dynastical family over another dynastical family. What to do there? The root of the problem lies in the 27 year old disregard for Article ll section 26 of our Constitution by Congress’ over the years. If we had any President that considered an anti dynasty Bill a priority, it might get through the House but as all Presidents are of dynastical stock that is unlikely… Dynastical rule is here to stay..


    YEAH, Tony, show ‘em how it’s done!

  • http://www.facebook.com/kevin.tolee Kevin Tole

    and so the Dynasty of political corruption would include the CHURCH….it is as corrupt as the present political dynasties…buying votes from the altar…tsk tsk

    • boldyak

      hahaha…buying votes from the altar?…nonsense comment…

  • regd

    My wife says the Catholic Church IS A DYNASTY. My head went up and down, I didn’t want to start a fight.

  • pipsirho

    Do not WASTE your VOTES on PIGS*!!!

    *PIGS => Politicians Insatiably Gorging Slop; SLOP in the form of Power, Public Fund, Dirty Money, PORK BARREL, Graft, POLITICAL DYNASTY, Corruption, Personal Interests, Influence Peddling, SHAMELESSNESS!!!!

    Katulad ng mga baboy na hindi na maalis sa sabsaban!!!

  • ravindrama

    No to DYNASTY !

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