William Blum, the author of the book, “Rogue State,” said that while the object of the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)-funded National Endowment for Democracy (NED) in the post Cold War era has been relegated to history, many are not inclined to believe that subversion has lost its relevance. Rather, it has only been redirected at overthrowing governments that refuse to tow the line gleaned from the NED’s slogan of “Supporting Freedom Around the World.”
Here in the Philippines, the so-called restoration of freedom saw the popping out like mushrooms of local non-governmental organizations (NGOs) with the newly-created CIA front called “NED” leading in guiding the government it installed to power. The CIA too had to shed off some of its covert activities by making itself “transparent.” Through the NED, local NGOs openly collaborated with the government it held by the noose, with each having a specialized task to “motivate” people in the various sectors of civil society.
As Blum observed: “In a multitude of ways, NED meddles in the internal affairs of foreign countries by supplying funds, technical know-how, training, educational materials, computers, fax machines, copiers, automobiles and so on, to selected political groups, civic organizations, labor unions, dissident movements, student groups, book publishers, newspapers, other media, etc. NED programs generally impart the basic philosophy that working people and other citizens are best served under a system of free enterprise, class cooperation, collective bargaining, minimal government intervention in the economy and opposition to socialism in any shape or form. A free market economy is equated with democracy, reform and growth, and the merits of foreign investment are emphasized.”
We can cite first the CODE-NGO. It claims that its objective is “to deepen civil society’s efforts to advance participatory, accountable, and transparent governance at the local level. Through trainings and networking opportunities, CODE-NGO supported citizens’ participation in governance processes, especially focusing on key planning and budgeting mechanisms, to advance civil society’s reform agenda. Other activities include sharing of lessons learned and media outreach to inform public discourse on democratic governance.”
As posted in the internet, its officers are: Sixto Donato C. Macasaet, Executive Director; Roselle Rasay, Deputy Executive Director; Rowena Caverte, Finance & Admin Manager; and Tanya Zaldarriaga, Program Officer for Membership. Other officers listed were Jet Pacapac, Celia Fatima de Jesus, Dimple Labios-Demata, Emmanuel Opiña, Paul Richard Paraguya, Sandino Soliman, Deanie Lyn Ocampo, Florencia Racca, Cecilia Delfin, Mariefe Del Mundo, Dan Christian Ramos, Christine Ann De Villa, and, Carissa Galla.
The report also states that CODE-NGO in 2012 received a grant from NED $63,419 and $87,300 in 2011. This is the same NGO that was behind the scheme to float the government PEACe bond in 2001 to secure public loan at a staggering amount of P10 billion to a pre-arranged bank. For inexplicable reason, said loan was piously complied with by this pretending-to-be honest government for which it paid the full amount of P35 billion in 2012.
Another is the Center for Media Freedom & Responsibility, Inc. (CMFRI). It claims its objective is “to advance press freedom and promote responsible journalism in the Philippines.” The CMFR also seeks to implement a program on media monitoring; organize a seminar recognizing excellence in journalism; and conduct advocacy to strengthen press protection in the Philippines.”
The CMFR officers are: Melinda Quintos de Jesus, Executive Director; Prof. Luis V. Teodoro, Deputy Director; and the members of the Board of Trustees are: Melinda Quintos de Jesus; Luis V. Teodoro; Maria Isabel G. Ongpin; Tina Monzon Palma; Vergel O. Santos; Carlos H. Conde; and Lorna Kalaw-Tirol. Leaders of the press community and CSOs in the Philippines who served in the Board previously include: Dr. Jose Abueva, Dr. Lydia Balatbat-Echauz, Fr. Joaquin Bernas, S.J., Mr. Santiago Dumlao Jr., Atty. Fulgencio Factoran Jr., and Paulynn Paredes Sicam. In 2011, CMFRI received a grant of $79,000 and $76,000 in 2012 from NED.
Third is the International Center for Innovation, Transformation and Excellence in Governance (INCITEGov) Inc. INCITEGov Inc. claims that in order to strengthen the movement for democratic governance and reforms, its main task is “to empower and mobilize an informed public and a community of reformers dedicated to advancing sustainable, democratic reforms through the practice of linking democratic politics, good governance, and development outcomes.”
Listed as founding trustees of INCITEGov are: Florencio “Butch” Abad; Emilia “Emy” Boncodin (deceased); Teresita “Ging” Quintos-Deles; Victoria “Vicky” Garchitorena; Jose Luis “Chito” Gascon; Alberto “Bert” Lina; Imelda “Mely” Nicolas; Guillermo “Willie” Parayno, Jr.; Cesar Purisima; Juan “Johnny” Santos; Corazon “Dinky” Juliano-Soliman and Rene Villa. Its Executive officers are: Maxine Tanya Hamada, Paola Deles, Johanna Delos Reyes, Janice Almine, May Ann Chu, Cecilia Oleza, Dion Lorenz Romano, and, Josielyn Linga. In 2012, INCITEGov received a grant of $90,000 and $100,000 in 2011 from NED.
Fourth is the Legal Network for Truthful Elections Inc.
or LENTE. Its avowed purpose is “to protect the credibility of the electoral process. To realize that objective, it encouraged the support of citizens’ participation in promoting free and fair elections in the Philippines. Local chapters also conduct monitoring before, during, and after the election, focusing on a range of issues including illegal campaigning, disenfranchisement, vote buying and selling, and political violence. The Co-Convenors are Atty. Jose Vicente B. Salazar, National President of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines, and Atty. Carlos P. Medina, Jr., Chief Legal Counsel of One Voice and Executive Director of the Ateneo Human Rights Center. In 2013, it received a grant of $47,000 from NED.
Fifth is the Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism
(PCIJ). Its task is “to strengthen the media’s ability to analyze and report on the culture of impunity, focusing on the interrelated issues of governance, money politics, media killings, political clans, and development. PCIJ will conduct four investigative journalism workshops for media representing Luzon, Mindanao, Visayas, and Metro Manila and provide fellowships to select participants to write more in-depth investigative reports as follow-on to their trainings.”
The Board of Editors are: David Celdran, Chairman; Howie G. Severino, Vice Chairman, Malou Mangahas, Secretary/Executive Director; Dominick NA Danao, Treasurer; members: Sheila S. Coronel (Founding Executive Director) and Cecile C.A. Balgos. In 2013, PCIJ received a grant of $50,000 from NED.