Wednesday, November 18, 2009

3000 OFWs in Prison Worldwide

No less than the Department of Foreign Affairs recently and clearly said that there are to date about some 3000 Overseas Filipino Workers presently languishing in jails the world over. Millions of men and women with genuine or fabricated documents plus young people with faked ages, left everybody and everything in their otherwise wonderful Country fervently hoping to find work abroad – even in Nations that are not known for kindness and fair play. Their over-all fundamental concern and intent are rather plain and simple: They simply want to earn a living. They merely want to have jobs of practically any kind. They only want to extend financial support to their families.

There is much official rhetoric about the economic stability and even great social development of the Country. In fact, time and again it is formally and loudly claimed that the “economic fundamentals” – whatever these really are – have always been in place. This is not to mention the unfailing yearly glorious promises and glowing predictions made by the Leader-In-Chief for the whole Nation to hear and applaud and wait and still wait – to these days. And after no less than some nine years of busy wheeling and dealing by the still ruling Administration, the latter’s national report card, among other things says: One, more people are hungry. Two, less people have jobs. Three, and the often pointed over-all culprit for such a grim scenario is the people themselves, i.e., there are too many mouths to feed, too many bodies to clothe and to shelter. All these plus the shanties they build, the garbage they file. On top of these all, there is too much water or no water, too much sun or no sun to blame.

When will this administration get real – if ever – with just a few months of supposedly staying in power according to the Fundamental Law of the land? With so much expertise obtained plus so profound learning claimed, how come the Chief-In-Command does not yet know: First, that it is the perverse government graft and corruption par excellence that are the real twin basic and original culprit of the on-going national catastrophe. Second, that even this administration openly admits with no reserve nor shame that the regular multi-million dollar remittances of also millions of OFWs are what keep the Philippines economically afloat. Third, that population is the real and lasting wealth of a Country on proviso only that they are duly educated and accordingly employed.

Needless to say, the People of the Philippines have no realistic option than to wait for a new administration that is expected to emerge soon – if the great someone with the cohorts would play the game by the rule. Truth to say, this is so tragic. There was that not so distant past that with the eviction of someone identified with anything but integrity, when hopes were high and the Filipino spirit was optimistic – with the emergence of a seemingly upright and competent new leadership. But what a big tragedy that instead came to fore! The socio-economic situation was then bad. But after so many years of subsequent presidential, emergency and even czarist rule – or whatever – the social standing and economic situation of the Country is worst, much worst! How sad! What a tragedy! Redeemer wanted!

OVCruz, JCD
November 18, 2009