Posted tagged ‘civil disobedience’


February 4, 2011

Erle Frayne D. Argonza


Africa is on fire. From north to south, east to west of the continent, politico-military turbulences are taking place, hence tending to confuse and scale up fear among the ordinary folks of the continent.


You can go ahead and harbor your own perspective in explaining the causes of the conflicts there. You can see the conflicts from a domestic vantage point, thus explaining turbulence based on internal factors such as religious, ethnic, and geopolitical factors. You can also choose to explain them from the vantage point of a globalist, thus explicating the turbulences as offshoots of global synarchy of chaos fomented by the financier oligarchs of the West.


At a time when a new millennium is accelerating momentum, bringing forth glad tidings of prosperity and relative peace, hot fires are taking place in Africa. Whether a single set of explanations would suffice to comprehend the predominance of negative imagery in the continent would be subject of debates. What is clear first of all is that the continental imagery tends to recline on the negative which bodes ill for the Africans.


To name a few representative projections of the turbulences: growing protests in Tunisia; contested poll results in Cote d’Ivory, spiraling into civil war proportions; paper governance in Somalia where pirates abound as offshoot of a failed state; still unabated turbulence in Zimbabwe, spilling off millions of migrants to South Africa; Sudan’s split between North and South as a result of religious and ethnic divergences; and, brewing conflict between Copts and Muslims in Egypt.


Those representative turbulences alone demonstrate that in every corridor of the continent—north, east, west, south—turbulence is the pattern. The anarchy practically overshadows or masks the peace, cooperation and development now going on in countries that have struggled hard to depart from the path of failed states that were balkanized by internecine wars.


Let us take the case of the Sahara. A gigantic effort to green the historically desert region has been going on for years now, which to me is a milestone event that will reverse the age-old desertification. With the turbulences going on in the cardinal corridors of the continent, who would now care to examine and extol the very admirable eco-balancing inter-country efforts in the pan-Sahara?


Tanzania and Ghana would also be worth your enquiry. Both countries are undertaking development efforts, with external investors showing great interest in both countries as showcase of cross-border direct foreign investments. Ghana is most especially important to my beloved Philippines, as many of its leaders were schooled by top universities in Manila. Who would ever care for such exemplary developments in both countries, with the media perpetually presenting staccato and crescendo of turbulences in the continent?


Africa is indeed on fire, all of its representative regions have their respective versions of hot spots, so the situation must first of all be accepted by all stakeholders there. There must be no denying about the hot fires and brewing caldrons, so that the alternative courses of action can be configured, and the compass of peace be identified and executed.


As an external observer who is keenly interested in seeing Africa accelerate its development and poverty-reduction, I am very supportive of efforts by all stakeholders in the continent to forge ahead the agenda for stamping out hot fires, contain brewing caldrons, and prevent other fires from igniting in the foreseeable future. Africans who wish for my moral support can go ahead and let me sign advocacy positions that need the support of solidarity groups and individuals outside of the continent as I’ve done in the past.


Watching those exemplars of positive development in the continent, I am optimistic that Africans will be able to transcend their predicaments, imbroglios, and anarchies in due time. I hope that the fast rising ‘emerging markets’ in other continents would expand and diversify on their support for peace and development in Africa, and reinforce their deployment of grassroots volunteers to the continent.


To all concerned Africans, Love & Peace! You shall overcome!


[Philippines, 01 February 2011]




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April 28, 2008

Erle Frayne D. Argonza

[Writ. 16 March 2008, Quezon City, Metropolitan Manila]

Good evening!


It’s a Sunday evening, and right now the turbulence in the country brought about by protests against huge government anomalous transactions is the hottest agenda.


In this country, please note that bad governance has been responsible for so much political turmoil since the 1960s yet. The Marcos and Estrada administrations were overthrown via the ‘people power way’ precisely due to people’s widespread dissent against corruption and the erosive effects of the social ailment on development efforts and poverty alleviation.


Today the Arroyo administration is coming under hot fire due to the same malady. The difference between the Arroyo administrations and the previous ones is that this regime had arrived at a time when urban population had outstripped rural population. The middle class enjoys not only a clear edge in opinion making, it also enjoys a predominance of the population today.


Thus, with the middle class pointing to a political wind of turbulence, an upsurge of mass movement and potential upheavals is again around. Unless there are clear resolutions to the ailments currently coming under hot fire, there will be turbulence and possible armed conflicts in the urban centers in the coming months.


In closing this briefer reflection, let me enclose my own public statement about the matter.




[25 February 2008, Quezon City, Manila]


This gentleman, who was Spokesman of the PRO-GLORIA Multisectoral Coalition, hereby pronounces the most urgent need to save the nation from political deterioration and degeneration into the hovels of anarchy, by urging the President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo to resign her post.


To recall, together with many patriots then, we PROGLORIA Advocates joined the coalition in early 2004 with the values of good governance and competence among our top criteria for choosing leaders. Such values were to intersect with the advocacy for fair trade, to which GMA affirmatively supported via her line of “no to unbridled free trade.” And, hopefully, the benefits from public policies and programs would galvanize as greater social services for our marginal sectors. In the end, everybody wins from a GMA electoral victory.


After almost four (4) years of governing, the political-cultural terrain has become tragically murky. Civil liberties are openly violated by military & police functionaries, incompetence is endemic as the appointment of unqualified officials has been rampant,  corruption is more marked and brazenly committed, electoral reforms remain elusive while GMA herself is accountable for electoral fraud charges, and ‘free trade’ ensues with impunity while treaties that have onerous terms are being negotiated to the detriment of the national interest. It is true that the fiscal environment had been stabilized and credit standing had improved during GMA’s watch, but given the situation where her administration has become the main source of instability, it is not a remote possibility that such gains will be wiped out before the end of this year 2008. This present regime had clearly lost its moral moorings, credibility, and trustworthiness.


To save the nation from an impending system collapse, GMA and her team of state managers should resign en masse. This will then pave the way for constitutional processes to re-grow our most cherished values of good governance, strong institutions, greater democracy and equitable distribution of economic development gains. Public trust will then be regained, and political stability will fuel back our economic boom.





National Spokesman – PROGLORIA (2004)


Quezon City, MetroManila, 19 February 2008