26 August 2013. 9 am.
My countrymen flocked to the Rizal Park to stage a peaceful protest against the pork barrel scam that has caused a stir in the labor force. Filipinos in other parts of the country organized a similar movement, and overseas Filipinos staged their own protest rallies in the Philippine Consulate offices.
|The Rizal Park (Photo courtesy of Paulo Alcazaren)|
It was a delightful sight to behold. Filipinos from all walks of life, in or out of the country came together for a common goal - that the government should show transparency in how public funds are spent and to identify and punish those who squandered the billions of taxpayer money.
Who is to blame? The voting public, because those people will not be holding office if they were not elected to the post.
|Filipinos in Glendale, California |
(Photo courtesy of Terri Castillo)
A better Philippines may only be a dream unless we learn to vote for only WORTHY PEOPLE as lawmakers. Ban showbiz personalities and members of political dynasties from filing certificates of candidacy into public office. Lawmakers must have at least a good grasp of the law and years of experience in executive management. I am not being impartial, but, if these showbiz personalities and children of politicians have the desire to serve, then do so. They do not have to have the title of "Congressman" or "Senator" or whatever. My niece who is studying to be a lawyer suggested that the right of suffrage must be given only to taxpayers - to those who contribute a significant amount of their wage to the government.
My fellow Filipinos, haven't we learned our lesson yet? Wasting our votes and putting movie stars in public office does not guarantee us free movie tickets for eternity. The son or daughter of our favorite Mayor does not mean that they will turn out to be like their parents. Remember the saying - "Great men give rise to mediocre sons."
Please be vigilant. There will be a lot of white-washing to clear up the mess. The guilty ones will suddenly slip out of the country. And we will all be left wallowing in desperation, still poor, still hoping.
And for you, Janet Napoles - if you are not guilty of anything, why are you in hiding?