CBCP Assures Aquino of Critical Collaboration

Monday, May 24th, 2010

MANILA, May 21, 2010-The Catholic hierarchy on Friday has assured a 'critical collaboration' with the administration of presumptive president-elect Benigno Aquino III.

According to the head of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines (CBCP), the church would always support efforts to fight poverty and corruption.

Tandag Bishop Nereo Odchimar, CBCP president, said the bishops will work closely with the government in building a just society.

"We will collaborate in those things which are good for the welfare of the people," Odchimar said in a radio interview.

But the bishop said the CBCP would not also hesitate to criticize policies of the forthcoming Aquino administration if it would go against the moral principles and teachings of the church.

"At the same time we will also be critical in matters which we would perceive to be detrimental to the common good," said Odchimar.

The CBCP head, for instance, cited the church's "non-negotiable" stand against measures that promotes birth control.

Aquino is a known supporter of the controversial Reproductive Health bill which provides the government to promote artificial contraception if it becomes law.

Odchimar admitted the issue of birth control is one thing that "might not be in conformity" with the next president.

"Then we have to lobby once again to make our position clear that we are for human life, the respect and preservation of human life is non-negotiable," he said. (Roy Lagarde/CBCPNews)