Sira-sira store: Tasting the bite

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Friday, June 27, 2014


NOW comes the news that the politicians allegedly involved in the pork barrel scam are complaining about detention life. Perhaps they now know how their “mga minamahal kong kababayan” feel.

Sen. Bong Revilla Jr. and Sen. Jinggoy Estrada are now detained at the Philippine National Police (PNP) Custodial Center in Camp Crame because of their alleged involvement in the pork barrel scam.

But recently, Chief Superintendent Reuben Theodore Sindac, PNP Public Information Officer chief, said that Bong and Jinggoy wanted everyone to know that they never complained about their conditions in jail.

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No, they never ranted about rats and cockroaches cohabiting with them in their cell.

The 32-square-meter room has walls that are painted. The bathroom has a nice metallic shower head, and the floor is paved with brown tiles.

Their rooms look far better than the house rented by my friend Illustracio. His house has two rooms with tiny windows, and the floor is not tiled.

From years of use, the concrete floor has gained a nice sheen. The living room has two microscopic windows, and the restroom is a matchbox with a tiny hole that the house owner insists is “a window.”

Since the house is surrounded by two gutters, the pest infestation is phenomenal. Reality sucks.

As for the food, there was the issue of Bong and cell buddy Jinggoy refusing to eat the PNP food. Hold your horses, don’t jump into conclusions yet.

“Pinapasabi nila na hindi sila nagrereklamo. They return their food ration to us and we (distribute) it to other inmates there,” Sindac said in a TV news flash.

It was also reported that the two actors-turned-politicians had ample food supplies brought for them by their loved ones. Ah, so.

The “complaint” was attributed to the lawyers. “Ever since, Revilla said he never had complaints. He said his lawyers were just joking,” the official was quoted as saying.

Also mentioned in the news was the food the two men were served: salted eggs, daing and paksiw na bangus. It’s a common type of food eaten by the common tao who live in common houses and earn common wages.

Here’s food for thought for those who sit in high places after they fall: Consider yourselves lucky to have a clean room with a kitchen and a shower for a prison cell.

Smile at the fact that you don’t have to share a 32-square-meter room with maybe 10 other detainees.

Think of the thousands of no-income, low-income and small-income Illustracios in the country and what they have to deal with on a daily basis. It beats jail time.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on June 28, 2014.

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