Welcome to Scribd. Sign in or start your free trial to enjoy unlimited e-books, audiobooks & documents.Find out more
Download
Standard view
Full view
of .
Look up keyword
Like this
1Activity
0 of .
Results for:
No results containing your search query
P. 1
Hints and Hues of Transitional Justice in the Philippines over the Last Twenty Five Years.

Hints and Hues of Transitional Justice in the Philippines over the Last Twenty Five Years.

Ratings: (0)|Views: 11|Likes:
Published by Theodore Te
An essay comparing the use of transitional justice mechanisms and paradigms by the Presidents Aquino, Corazon and Benigno III, who took power 25 years apart. The essay explores the parallelism in the use of transitional justice measures by the first President Aquino, Corazon, to address problems brought about by the transition from dictatorship to democracy in 1986 and the use of almost the same transitional justice devises by her son, the second President Aquino, Benigno III, to address the transition from the regime of Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo to Mr. Aquino's presidency.

This is an abridged version of a much longer essay written in 2012 as part of the requirements for a Seminar on Transitional Justice at Columbia Law School under Prof. Graeme Simpson. This shortened version was submitted to the Southeast Asian Human Rights Network 2nd International Conference on Human Rights and Peace and Conflict in Southeast Asia on October 18, 2012 in Jakarta.
An essay comparing the use of transitional justice mechanisms and paradigms by the Presidents Aquino, Corazon and Benigno III, who took power 25 years apart. The essay explores the parallelism in the use of transitional justice measures by the first President Aquino, Corazon, to address problems brought about by the transition from dictatorship to democracy in 1986 and the use of almost the same transitional justice devises by her son, the second President Aquino, Benigno III, to address the transition from the regime of Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo to Mr. Aquino's presidency.

This is an abridged version of a much longer essay written in 2012 as part of the requirements for a Seminar on Transitional Justice at Columbia Law School under Prof. Graeme Simpson. This shortened version was submitted to the Southeast Asian Human Rights Network 2nd International Conference on Human Rights and Peace and Conflict in Southeast Asia on October 18, 2012 in Jakarta.

More info:

Categories:Types, Business/Law
Published by: Theodore Te on May 05, 2013
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

Availability:

Read on Scribd mobile: iPhone, iPad and Android.
download as PDF, TXT or read online from Scribd
See more
See less

12/01/2013

pdf

text

original

 
HINTS AND HUES OF TRANSITIONAL JUSTICE IN THEPHILIPPINES OVER THE LAST TWENTY-FIVE YEARS
Theodore Te
1
 "
 History, despite its wrenching pain,Cannot be unlived, and if faced with courage, Need not be lived again
."
2
 
“What’s past is prologue”
3
 This essay focuses on the Philippines’ experience with transition fromauthoritarian rule to constitutional governance and looks into its transitioncontinuum, which spans twenty five years, involves five presidents, twodeclarations of martial law, two Constitutions, and a mother and son who both became Presidents, reluctantly, with the similar mandate to exact accountabilityfrom their respective authoritarian predecessors. It is the “oedipal”
4
image of mother and son--Corazon “Cory” Aquino and Benigno “NoyNoy” Aquino III--occupying the same office twenty-five years apart and facing almost the sameexpectations but under different circumstances and the effects on the country’stransition from authoritarianism that is the peg of this essay.
1
Ll.B. (J.D. Equivalent), University of the Philippines (1990); LL.M., Columbia Law School(2012); Assistant Professor, University of the Philippines College of Law; Member, Free LegalAssistance Group (FLAG).
2
 
Maya Angelou,
1993, "On The Pulse of Morning, January 20, 1993 (spoken at the President’sInaugural);
 see
 http://poetry.eserver.org/angelou.html; last accessed August 10, 2012.
3
 
See
William Shakespeare, “The Tempest”, Act 2, Scene 1.
4
The description is courtesy of Professor Graeme Simpson, adjunct professor at Columbia LawSchool, and is most apt. I thank him for the inspired description and for his invaluable commentson the initial idea for this essay which was originally proposed and submitted in his seminar onTransitional Justice (Fall 2011, Columbia Law School). While the idea for the paper submitted inhis seminar is the same as the idea for this essay, the current essay is a completely revised andoriginal work, with different thrusts, focus and analysis.
 
2
Both presidents took office twenty-five years apart as essentiallyinspirational leaders with great personal integrity and moral character but withunexceptional governance skills and experience.
5
Such as they were, both took office laden with extremely high expectations and a mandate to hold their extremely unpopular and reviled predecessors
6
accountable for their excesses andcrimes. Both were expected to address the plunder of the national treasury as wellas gross violations of human rights; both were expected to restore the confidenceof the people in democratic institutions that their respective predecessors hadundermined and fundamentally destroyed.This essay focuses on the Philippines’ experience with transitional justicemechanisms viewed from the lens of two Presidents, both surnamed Aquino andwho are mother and son, who had the similar mandate to preside over two periodsof transition twenty five years apart. In the first part of the essay, the notion of  justice in transition is defined and contextualized. In the second part, thecircumstances that thrust Mrs. Aquino and Mr. Aquino III into office and thecontext each found themselves in is examined, with a focus on the measures taken by the two Presidents within their first year in office
7
to manage the transition
5
Corazon Aquino had no experience with governance until she took office in February 1986; her son, the current President, was a three-term Congressman and was into his first term as a Senator when he was elected President in 2010, but had a quiet and unexceptional stint as a legislator.
6
For Corazon C. Aquino, it was the late Ferdinand E. Marcos, who had declared martial law in thePhilippines on September 21, 1972, imposed a practically handwritten Constitution, looted thecountry’s coffers and ruled by decree until his ouster on February 25, 1986 by the now-famous“People Power Revolution”. For Benigno C. Aquino III, it was now Congresswoman Gloria M.Macapagal-Arroyo, who assumed office under the constitutional line of succession in 2001 whenformer President Joseph Estrada was ousted by a second “People Power Revolution” and later was proclaimed President in a controversial presidential election in 2004; Macapagal-Arroyo, likeMarcos, declared martial law albeit only for a certain territory, was charged with plunderinggovernment funds, and was much reviled.
7
The focus on the first year is deliberate because Mrs. Aquino’s first year in office was as head of a revolutionary government where she ruled by decree under a provisional constitution, without alegislature and under a reorganized Supreme Court and a bureaucracy reorganized at all levels.Mr. Aquino’s first year in office clearly reveals some parallels in terms of perspective, focus and
 
3
from authoritarian rule to constitutional governance. In the third part, theeffectiveness and responsiveness of these measures are inquired into. The essayconcludes with some insights into how much or little the measures have helped inshaping the country’s future by acknowledging its past and managing the present.
I. The Notion of Justice in Transitions
Whenever transition occurs, a divide is created between the old and thenew, the former and the current, the past and the present. This divide poses achallenge and, perhaps, even a danger to meaningful societal transformationarising from how the present deals with the past.Transitional justice looks at how the past affects the present to determinethe future. At its core, it is the conception of justice associated with periods of  political change,
 
characterized by legal responses to confront the wrongdoings
ofrepressive predecessor regimes.
8
 
The challenge arises when a successor regime is either too immersed in the past that the present is forgotten or is tooindifferent to the past that the present is besieged with unlearned lessons from past mistakes. In both instances, the effects on a country’s future is significant.Living in the past while operating in the present prevents a country from lookingforward while forgetting the past and focusing only on the present ensures that the
tools used; however, there are also some significant and notable differences which will bediscussed in detail
infra
.
8
Ruti G. Teitel,
Transitional Justice Genealogy
, 16 H
ARV
.
 
H.R.
 
J. 69 (2003); she further describestransitional justice as becoming both extraordinary and international in the postwar period after 1945 and characterizes it in three phases: Phase I, associated with war crimes, trials and sanctions,ended with the Cold War; Phase II, associated with accelerated democratization and politicalfragmentation and the supposed “third wave of transition”, is best exemplified by the fall of theformer Soviet Union and the resulting transitions throughout much of the world; and Phase III,associated with globalization and exemplified by conditions of heightened political violence andinstability and involving the normalization of a body of law associated with pervasive conflict asthe rule rather than the exception.
 Id 
. at 70-72.

You're Reading a Free Preview

Download
scribd
/*********** DO NOT ALTER ANYTHING BELOW THIS LINE ! ************/ var s_code=s.t();if(s_code)document.write(s_code)//-->