Geiger counter – an instrument for detecting ionizing radiation. It consists of a thin central wire carrying positive charge, surrounded by a concentric circular conducting cylinder carrying an equal negative charge.

I am a no political activist.

At least not the kind that infests Mendiola and Welcome Rotonda with placards and curses, and seeks to unseat every Malacañang occupant—but maybe this time, I will, unless President Macapagal Arroyo voluntarily resigns.

***

Pressure on the resignation of the president has been gaining momentum. No less than former President Cory Aquino has asked Mrs. Arroyo to make the “supreme sacrifice” by relinquishing the presidency. Earlier GMA’s trusted economic team led by Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima and other key cabinet members also called for the presidents’ resignation.

The La Salle system and the University of the Philippines College of Law have asked GMA to step out of Malacañang, while the UP Manila Student Council sought for both resignations of GMA and Vice President Noli de Castro.

The University, meanwhile, suggested the creation of a Truth Commission, to be composed of non-partisan sectors enoying “general social acceptance” that will independently investigate allegations against Mrs. Arroyo.

***

My mother always says, walang usok kung walang apoy. Mrs. Arroyo did not dismiss accusations immediately because they had base. She admitted calling a Comelec official while counting was still going on, but never dwelled on the details the people needed. She reasoned that she was only protecting her votes, but she seems to forget that as the president of the republic, she is also to protect the votes of her rivals. She apologized, not for the impropriety the people had known very well by then, but for a sugarcoated “lapse in judgment.” You have said again and again that you are ready to face the consequences of your actions. Then resign, make the supreme sacrifice.

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Public service is a public trust. You can never govern unless you have the latter. As to who will assume the presidency, let the people decide.

Election is most fundamental to freedom and democracy. To deface the sacred nature of the vote would be the gravest sin.

***

I was watching a television debate show when a pro-GMA panelist questioned the credibility of whoever is to succeed GMA if she resigned. A party-list representative, answered, “We have 85 million Filipinos; I don’t think GMA has the monopoly of intelligence.”

***

Finally, the Applied Physics batch of the College of Science is complete. To the freshmen, welcome, and to the pioneer graduating batch, good luck. May this year be a smooth sailing, “rocking” experience for all of us. God bless the Philippines.

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