Saturday , May 26, 2018

Tell it to SunStar: Broken promises

DURING the presidential campaign and after winning the elections, President Rodrigo Duterte made the following promises:

1. “I will solve the problems of criminality, drug addiction and corruption in 3 to 6 months.”

Crime is on the rise, committed not only by ordinary criminals but also by the police themselves. One notable example was the kidnapping of Korean businessman, Jee Ick Joo in October 2016 and the killing of said businessman right inside Camp Crame. Then there was the slaying of the detained Albuera mayor right inside his detention cell by elements of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) which was tagged by a Senate Committee as premeditated murder. There was also the killing of three teenagers in Caloocan City a few months ago by elements of the police.

Drug addiction has worsened as shown by the importation from China of “shabu” months ago worth P6.4 billion with the alleged involvement of presidential relatives. The so- called war on drugs has become a charade as only the 13,000 poor addicts and pushers were exterminated while the rich importers of shabu and members of syndicates are scot-free.

2. “I will solve the communist insurgency that has plagued the country for several decades.”

Last week, peace talks with communists rebels were scuttled by President Duterte who accused the New People’s Army (NPA) of insincerity by staging attacks on government troops.

3. “I will end contractualization.”

Despite the rhetoric, contractualization has not been ended to the utter dismay and disappointment of workers who have been deprived of security of tenure.

4. “I will end the traffic problem in Metro Manila.”

The traffic problem in Metro Manila is getting worse. Never in recent memory have people been seen walking in the MRT railway tracks after a lot of MRT trains bogged down in recent months.

5. “I will uphold our national sovereignty in the West Philippine sea. I will ride on a jet-ski and plant the Philippine flag on one of the islands claimed by the Chinese.”

In an effort to appease China because of huge financial loans, President Duterte squandered our opportunity to uphold our national sovereignty by demeaning our hard-earned victory in the International Arbitral Court at the Hague by allowing China to construct structures in the disputed islands.

Meanwhile, the economic problems have worsened. Chronic unemployment, massive poverty, cheapening of the peso, escalation of prices of prime commodities, and the steady increase of oil prices continue to defy solutions.

Confusing statements on the declaration of a revolutionary government and the siren song of federalism can only exacerbate our problems. –Democrito C. Barcenas

Dengvaxia investigation

I support the investigation by the Department of Justice on the procurement of the anti-dengue vaccine Dengvaxia. There was clearly haste in the purchase of the vaccine worth P3.5 billion.--Roel N. dela Torre of Cebu City