August 9, 2009
Independent senator Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan urges the artist community to bring the matter of GMA’s appointment of Cecil Guidote-Alvarez as National Artist to court.
“Section 11 of RA 7356 provides that during his/her term as member of the commission, a commissioner shall not be eligible for any grant, or such any financial aid from the commission as an individual; provided however that he/she may compete for grants and awards on the same level as other artists one year after his/her term expires.”
As former Senate Education Committee Chairperson and former ex-officio member of the NCCA, Pangilinan says the appointment of Alvarez by Malcanang is illegal and must be recalled.
“She is prohibited by express provision of law from competing for awards considering that she is an incumbent commissioner. They cite an Executive Order to defend the appointment, but an EO can never amend a specific provision of the law. There is clearly a conflict of interest in this case–a wrong that a specific provision of the law precisely seeks to prevent.”
Pangilinan says the artist community has a valid case against the appointment. “If Malacanang insists on this illegal act, then the artist community should bring the matter to court on a petition for prohibition.”