‘Courtesy resignations’: Baseless, pointless and destabilizing
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THE Interior and Local Government secretary Benhur Abalos’ campaign to get the Philippine National Police’s 479 generals and colonels to submit this only-in-the-Philippines thing called “courtesy resignations” — wholeheartedly backed by President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. — will be among this administration’s colossal governance blunders.
Talk of historical irony. It was Marcos’ nemesis who invented this fiction of courtesy resignation.
“Courtesy resignation” is the pulled-out-of-thin-air invention that President Corazon Aquino used in her Proclamation 1, issued Feb. 25, 1986, or the day she claimed to have assumed the presidency. In that proclamation, she said: “As a first step to restore public confidence, I expect all appointed public officials to submit their courtesy resignations beginning with members of the Supreme Court.”
“Courtesy resignation” was obviously a public relations spin for Aquino’s dictatorial order: “All you Marcos minions, including the Supreme Court, step down now!” The Supreme Court justices of course ignored Aquino’s order and so did Marcos Cabinet ministers and deputies who simply didn’t go to office, didn’t even bother to submit “courtesy resignations” and faded away from the government — refusing to pay “courtesy” to the new one-woman ruler. Even the highest ranking official after Marcos, Prime Minister Cesar Virata refused to vacate his post, pointing out that it wasn’t Marcos who appointed him but members of the Batasan Pambansa.(more…)