Let me begin this column on the Arroyo travel ban controversy with two assertions. First, I like President Aquino and support most of his policies and initiatives, including his peace policy, the economic and anti-poverty measures his administration has taken, and yes, his unrelenting, aggressive pursuit to hold accountable former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo for alleged corrupt acts and political misdeeds (like the electoral sabotage of 2007). I certainly do not believe that the President is motivated by personal vendetta against Arroyo, nor is he being hard-hearted as shown by the offer to pay for bringing in international medical experts of her choice to Manila. Second, I hold and continue to hold in high esteem Secretary of Justice Leila De Lima. I have been a big admirer of her since she was chairperson of the Commission on Human Rights. I consider Secretary De Lima as one of the most competent and committed public servants in the current administration.
But on this issue of disallowing Arroyo to travel abroad for medical reasons, both President Aquino and Secretary De Lima are wrong. Read on