I attended this yesterday afternoon. It was televised via DZMM TV and hosted by Henry Omaga Diaz & Susan “Toots” Ople.
I was lucky to have the chance to see this live at the ABS-CBN Studio 4.
This is basically a forum organized to tackle about the issues being faced by the OFWs. What the presidentiables plan to do if they become president.
The presidentiables who attended were:
- Senator Francis “Chiz” Escudero
- Senator Loren Legarda
- Senator Mar Roxas
- Senator Jamby Madrigal
A lot of OFWs attended the forum including the 137 bus drivers stranded in Dubai (check my post regarding that).
There were too many things discussed, but here are some points that I remember:
- To have an OFW bank to keep all the money that OFWs remit. This money will be solely owned by the OFWs.
- OFW bank will in turn be used for OFW investments (businesses they can put up, etc)
- OFWs can make use of dual citizenship so they can also benefit from both country’s laws.
- OFW funds should be used for the OFW families and not for the government.
- Scholarship fund for the children of the OFWs.
- Retired OFWs will have better life in the Philippines
- Government to Government basis for the OFWs will be done via negotiations
At the end of the show, there was a survey done by ABS-CBN via text votes. They asked if the people believe that after the leadership forum, there will be good times coming for the OFW (basically if they believe what the presidentiables are saying about their plans). 45% answered yes and 55% said no. That means a lot of work will need to be done by the government for the Filipino people to start believing in them.
After the show, I asked each of the presidentiable if I can take picture with him/her. Based on that brief interaction, I like Chiz Escudero & Jamby Madrigal the best 🙂 It shows in the pictures.
More pictures here.