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Cory’s ‘Apology’

December 23, 2008


It’s a rare event when the broadsheets carry almost identical headlines.
This is one such day with the national dailies all reporting that former president Cory Aquino apologized to former president Erap Estrada over her role in his ouster in 2001.

Mr. Estrada calls Mrs. Aquino’s gesture “the best Christmas gift and a vindication.”

Early this morning, however, President Cory’s spokesperson, Ms. Deedee Sytangco told DZMM radio anchors Anthony Taberna and Gerry Baja the apology “was made in jest by Mrs. Aquino as she was reacting extemporaneously to the prepared remarks Mr. Estrada gave during the launching of the biography of former Speaker Jose De Venecia.

“She said sorry in the spirit of levity of the occasion,.” Sytangco explained, carefully trying to put Aquino’s remark in context short of retracting it.

Retraction or not, what was actually said became clear when the recorded remark of the former lady president was replayed.

She said she was “among those who feel guilty about their role in EDSA Dos and I hope you can forgive me,” directly addressing Estrada.

The headline-making statement speaks for itself, minus the interpretative paraphrase in news accounts quoting Aquino as having called Erap’s ouster a “mistake.”

Interviewed separately also by Taberna and Baja, Press Secretary Jesus Dureza said “nothing much should be made of President Cory’s statement other than it being an act of reconciliation with Mr. Estrada in the same way that President Arroyo “made the ultimate gesture of granting Estrada pardon for his conviction on plunder charges.”

Mr. Estrada added that Cory was not the only one who had apologized to him for EDSA Dos, saying “the many who visited me when I was in jail showed me by their action that they were sorry, even Angie Reyes (Estrada’s military chief of staff then who withdrew his support from Estrada).

This episode will be the topic of discussions over the Christmas holidays.

Methinks the net-net value will accrue to Erap: bolstering his resolve to fully vindicate himself by running for president if and when the scheduled 2010 elections take place.

Trademark Philippine politics in play: no permanent enemies, just permanent interests.

One Comment leave one →
  1. December 23, 2008 9:04 pm

    Cory did a big mistake!

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