About Philippine Jury Initiative
Written by WPJI Admin.
The Philippine Jury Initiative Ltd. (PJI or PhilJury), formerly known as Philippine Jury International was founded in Twickenham, London on the 30th August 2009. Its founding members are Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW) and Overseas Filipino Residents (OFR) residing in the United Kingdom.
As envisaged by its founding members, PJI is a charitable, non-governmental, non-partisan and non-violent organization. It was borne of the necessity to awaken the Filipino people to the need for a check and balance in our so-called “democratic” society. This check and balance can only be achieved by giving the people the real power to curb the excesses of its leaders.
The peoples’ ability to judge its own peers, be they rich or poor, powerful or powerless, through a JURY SYSTEM is an all-important mechanism that has kept many progressive, democratic countries in a stable state.
COULD THIS HAPPEN IN THE PHILIPPINES IN THE PRESENT POLITICAL AND JUDICIAL LANDSCAPE?
Our present judicial system needs revisiting. For too long, we have suffered under an outdated practice whereby justice is dispensed in some areas of a legal system which cannot be defined as equitable. The Ampatuan Criminal Trial is just one example.
We are of the opinion that the governement of the day is conscious of the weaknesses of our judicial system. It is looking for solutions to the country’s malady but has turned a blind eye to the opposite of a single-judge system which is the Jury System. The recent impeachment of the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, itself a Trial by Jury, should have enlightened them about the Jury System.
The youth of the land, with their campaign of “BOTO MO, IPATROL MO” during the 2010 general election and the ongoing call for “AKO ANG SIMULA NG PAGBABAGO” should be given direction. It is not enough to call for change if they do not know what to change the present system with. Today, we are presenting a proposal to bring about equality, justice and fairness for all the citizens of our beloved nation. They have to realise that a JURY SYSTEM that is embedded in our judicial system is what our country needs because it will:
- Empower the Filipino people in the running of the government;
- Make our leaders respect justice and fairness;
- Enforce our country’s laws and instil respect for them from all levels of our society;
- Create a Judiciary that is untainted and equal to our peers throughout the world.
Let us now, unite together and awaken our politicians and leaders that there is another way of ruling the country. If they really want change for the country, then they should shift the real power in government from the privileged few to the people. Winston Churchill once said “ONLY AS LONG AS JURIES OF ORDINARY CITIZENS HAVE THE FINAL SAY, GOVERNMENT REMAINS THE SERVANT, NOT THE MASTER, OF THE PEOPLE”.
Do not leave this monumental task on the shoulders of a few OFWs and OFRs who have seen Trial by Jury in action and have lived life in countries with a jury system. They would like to share their blessings with every Filipino.
Last September 2009, just before Typhoons Ondoy and Pepeng, we established our affiliate in the Philippines _ KATARUNGANG PANGSAMBAYANAN INC. Its chairman, Dominador Domingo, and his team have started making waves, despite the typhoons, in spreading the cause. PJI wishes our affiliates from the Cagayan Valley the best of everything.
WE CALL ON ALL OUR READERS NOT TO JUST BE AN ONLOOKER; GET INVOLVED! For more info, please read “NEXT MOVE”.
DO NOT ALLOW OUR PRAYERS FOR A BETTER PHILIPPINES TO GO UNHEARD AND UNANSWERED. REMEMBER _ “NASA DIYOS ANG AWA, NASA TAO ANG GAWA” (God Helps Those Who Help Themselves.)
So Help Us God.