A Reaction on the Corruption in the Philippine Government

Corruption in the government is a real issue that the Philippines is experiencing today. Both the local and national governments are plague with cases of graft and corruption. It is no surprise to hear news reports of plundering of funds, the most famous case being the misuse of the Priority Development Assistant Funds or more known as the “pork barrel” scam. The Filipino masses have a right to feel distrust towards the government. It is crucial to understand the root cause of corruption in the Philippine government. The article is very informative as it provides a historical background as to how dishonesty in the government came to rise. I appreciate that the commentary was honest and direct, not sugar-coating the real state of our government. It said that “The Republic of the Philippines is a weak postcolonial state.” I proceeded to reflect upon these words and I could say that this is true. The Philippines is a third-world country and the corruption in the government does not help alleviate matters. What we need is true change right now. We must know where the problem lies and take steps toward solving it. If there is anything I’ve learned from reading the article, it is that the nature of our colonial and post-colonial history contributed towards sustaining corruption. Caciques, the term for the powerful elitist clans, has its beginnings in the Spanish colonial era. These continue to persist even up to today and throughout history. During the American occupation, politics has been mingling with oligarchy.

Candidates for government positions depend on their connections; the more connections and support you have from powerful elitist clans, the bigger your chances are for winning. This gives way to corruption as the candidates themselves feel indebted to the caciques, and they repay the gratitude in the forms of favors. When we regained our freedom from the Americans, we were struggling to promote democracy in the face of the tightening grip of the elitist oligarchs. This was almost impossible to do, knowing the scope of their power and influence in our government. It is evident as corruption persists even until today and probably will go on for quite a long time; as long as there is greed and lust for power. A most troubling period came during the Marcos regime where the late dictator and his cronies maintained an iron grip on the coffers of the Philippine masses. Plundering and pillaging the public funds became the main task and focus of his administration and Marcos was very good at what he did that even until today, we are paying for the debts made by him during his time. This was corruption at its peak; its revolting and disgusting nature in plain sight. How did it happen? The oligarch cronies of Marcos monopolized business and gave him bribes and kickbacks in return. Why did it happen? Human beings tend to be greedy and when we put greed above need, we commit acts of corruption, which then deprives others of good quality living. Unless there is a cure for avarice and materialism, there can be no antidote for corruption, this is what I’ve come to realize by reading the article.

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The future remains unclear, the elite remain in power and corruption continues to be synonymous to Philippine government. This is our sad plight and there must be something done to end or at least reduce it to a reasonable extent. What can be done? The author is correct in saying that “the nation’s leaders and thinkers must seriously address the causes of the problems and develop strategies to overcome the deeply rooted tradition of corruption”. Political leadership must be a source of change, not of corruption. The elite oligarchs must lose their influence and control of the government. That would help cease corruption. The government should also focus on creating strategies for good governance and effectively carrying them out. The way to a corruption-free government is one that is quite impossible to realize, frankly speaking, but it is not impossible to attain as much as change as possible. That should be the focus of the government now: to be able to achieve tangible change today.

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A Reaction on the Corruption in the Philippine Government. (2022, Sep 13). Retrieved from https://graduateway.com/a-reaction-on-the-corruption-in-the-philippine-government/