Ni NOEL ABUEL
Tiwala si Speaker Ferdinand Martin G. Romualdez na ang prospective Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) o katulad na kasunduan sa pagitan ng gobyerno ng Pilipinas at Japan ay mangyayari sa lalong madaling panahon.
Binanggit ni Romualdez ang kanyang assessment sa isang panayam sa mga mamamahayag na Pilipino sa Japan noong Biyernes.
“I think that’s ongoing. That’s ongoing…that’s what they call ‘a work in progress’. So there’s always conversations along those lines. And lines of communications are very, very wide open especially after the visit,” sabi ni Romualdez.
Ayon kay Romualdez, ang patuloy na pagbisita ay bunga ng unang pagpupulong nina Marcos at Japanese Prime Minister Kishida Fumio noong nakaraang taon sa New York sa United Nations General Assembly (UNGA).
“This is an offshoot of their first meeting, which I was present in New York. After the [UNGA] opening, we had lunch with the newly-minted, Prime Minister Kishida Fumio in New York, and the phrase that or the words that they used was that economic security. So you can figure out this with those two words,” ayon pa sa lider ng Mababang Kapulungan ng Kongreso.
“I think that’s the general direction. We’re all in the same region and we’re all actually experiencing the same issues and concerns and the President always says he knows…he always works multilaterally but that’s not without exception to having bilateral agreements, for instance, Philippines and Japan that would somehow effect like a trilateral agreement,” dagdag pa nito.
“That is existing, you know, with the US or, you know, with other countries. So you don’t necessarily have to just be the Philippines with the ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) but you have to work individual countries,” aniya pa.
Naniniwala umano ito na pag-uusapan nina Pangulong Marcos at Fumio ang nasabing usapin.
“There’s a general understanding that that’s the direction but it was always, you know, founded and on fact that to usher in an environment of peace and stability. But that’s what it’s all about, and I guess it’s the creation of balance,” ayon pa kay Romualdez.
At sa usapin naman sa posibleng reaksyon ng ibang bansa tulad ng China sa naturang kasunduan sa pagitan ng Pilipinas at Japan, sinabi ni Romualdez na laging malinaw ang patakarang panlabas ni Marcos at ito ay tungkol sa kapayapaan.
“The President has made his foreign policy very clear. He is a friend of all and the enemy to none, so he doesn’t want…The President feels that peace is the most important ingredient in any foreign policy declaration,” sabi nito.
“Now, what we’re doing is this..It’s also the capacity-building for the part of the Philippines. In fact, we are in the winning side of all of these types of arrangements or agreements because as you know, we still are a bit challenged when it comes to our defense capabilities and whatnot. So we definitely would be the most benefited one,” paliwanag pa ni Romualdez.