It pays to be honest
FORMER SOCIAL WELFARE and now Health Secretary Esperanza Cabral is reportedly using her office to harass a blogger who exposed the allegedly rotting relief goods at the warehouse of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).
If the reports are true, this is a shame.
But if the reports are not true, then forgive me Secretary Cabral.
However, according to the reports I received, the account is accurate.
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Here’s a little background:
Shortly after Tropical Storm “Ondoy” and Typhoon “Pepeng,” a blogger, identified as Ella de los Santos aka Ellaganda, wrote in her blog about a DSWD warehouse overflowing with relief goods sent by Good Samaritans, both here and abroad.
The goods, which should have been distributed to thousands of calamity victims who needed food, water and clothing, were reportedly gathering dust in the warehouse.
The blog showed photos of a warehouse filled to the brim with all sorts of relief goods.
Media picked up the story from the blog. As a result, the news became not only a national but also an international issue.
This angered Cabral who accused the blogger of being a “publicity-hungry bimbo” in a press statement.
Ella’s blog received insults and threats, many of which could be traced to the DSWD website.
An agent of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), accompanied by three burly men identified as DSWD employees, went to Tahanan Publishing in Legaspi Village, Makati City, the publisher of a book allegedly written by Ella.
The same group also allegedly went to the Parañnaque residence of the Dolor family, as Cabral was reportedly convinced that Ella was a member of that family.
Cabral would also announce in a news conference that the blogger had taken back her words in a subsequent blog, which was tantamount to a public apology, the DSWD website said.
It was a lie since Ella never did that.
Last week, the NBI announced it was filing a libel case against the blogger on instructions of Secretary Cabral.
The lawsuit has a chilling effect on the blogging community.
It sends the message that online writers and commentators cannot exercise their right to free speech.
What does Cabral stand to gain by harassing the blogger who, I’m told, is 28 years old and about to get married?
The marriage is being put on hold because the family is scared of Cabral.
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Business tycoon Danding Cojuangco trusts his assistant, Ramon S. Ang, more than his sons Charlie and Mark in running San Miguel Corp., the country’s biggest food conglomerate.
The trust is well deserved.
When the Cojuangcos fled the country with the dictator Ferdinand Marcos in 1986, he entrusted all his companies to Ang.
At that time, the possibility of the Marcoses and Cojuangcos ever coming back to the country was very remote.
Ang ran Cojuangco’s firms like a dutiful son.
When Cojuangco came back from exile, Ang not only handed back all the companies to him, he also turned over to his boss the firms’ profits in his absence, down to the last centavo.
Moral of the story: It pays to be honest.
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A contract to put up a central air-conditioning system at the Batasang Pambansa building complex in Quezon City has been awarded to a Chinese-Filipino businessman.
The project is expected to cost P100 million.
But you know what? The Chinoy is allegedly in the air-conditioning business since he is busy running malls.
He allegedly bagged the contract because he’s a friend of one of the top honchos at the House of Representatives.
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