Corruption in the Philippines is getting worse and worse. A lot of my fellow countrymen are just so fed up already. In a span of a few weeks, we already had 2 rallies: one in Luneta and another in Edsa. What is the call for action? Simply this: We want corruption to STOP!
Earlier, I was tasked to speak at the Million People March at Ayala. Being an ordinary employee, they wanted me to share my thoughts about what’s happening in our government particularly the hottest topic of today: Pork Barrel.
I read the main calls of Million People March and the Scrap Pork Network:
- “SCRAP THE PORK BARREL SYSTEM. We define pork barrel as all state funds subject to discretionary use and/or allocation by officials in all branches and in all levels of the government. We urge all Filipinos to push hard for the scrapping of the pork barrel system, and at the same time, to continue the discourse on the best alternative to take its place — an alternative that will fully serve the interests of our people as a whole, and will ensure that public money is strictly and absolutely for the use and benefit of all Filipinos, and not just the greedy few.
- ACCOUNT FOR ALL PORK SPENT. We challenge all government officials, officers and employees who received, allocated, or otherwise made use of these discretionary funds to publicly make an accounting of the same. We call on all Filipinos to demand such action from all levels of government and to maintain utmost vigilance until these public servants have accounted for all of the pork, down to the last centavo. We encourage fellow Filipinos to launch and share their initiatives to press for transparency in all levels of government and in all kinds of government transactions.
- INVESTIGATE AND PUNISH THOSE WHO MISUSE PORK. The pork barrel scandal goes beyond the Napoles scam. We Filipinos must sustain our demand on the government to show its determination to prosecute and punish not only its political enemies but also its own allies and appointees involved in the misuse of discretionary funds. We must continue letting our voices be heard until the guilty are convicted with finality and jailed, to serve as examples to those who may want to follow in their footsteps, that public money must be used solely and exclusively for the benefit and in the best interests of the Filipino people.
Here’s what I have to say and what I shared during the rally today:
Photo by Noemi Dado
My name is Roch and I’m an ordinary employee working in Makati City. I work very hard every single day and I pay my taxes in full and always on time. It’s just saddening that most of our hard-earned money goes to select few in the government who chose to be corrupt.
There are only 3 things that I want to happen:
- Fight & Stop Corruption – This is way beyond pork barrel. For me, this is all about corruption. We have to stop it! We have to stop voting for politicians who are only there for the money. This is too much already. We are so fed up! Let’s fight for this evil deed to stop!
- Demand Accountability – I want the corrupt politicians to be prosecuted! Right now, pogi, sexy & tanda are being investigated. If they will be proven guilty, then they should face the consequences! This is not only for the opposition but also for admin officials. I do not care if every single one in government goes to jail. If they are proven guilty, then they should be punished! No one should get away with corruption! We should hold those thieves accountable!
- Full Transparency – Last but definitely not the least, I want to have visibility on government funds. I want all the filipinos to see where every single cent of our taxes go.
I talked all those for 3 minutes using the Filipino language. Honestly, I never thought that I could be emotional on stage. Initially, I thought I would be boring and would be sweet while talking. Apparently, my anger and my frustration with what’s happening came out.
That said, I still believe that we are going to the right direction. Our president, Benigno Aquino III, definitely is keeping his promise to fight corruption and to lead the way for “matuwid na daan.”
I have hope for a better Philippines. I remain positive and I will continue to use social media to let the government know that we are watching and we do care.