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Bahin sang buhay
Saturday, January 19, 2013
IN ONE of our lessons in Social Science subject, the students learn about bureaucracy, and its advantages as well as disadvantages especially in today’s reality. Naturally, current issues are brought to fore and examined, and expectedly, the students could not help but be outright honest about what they are witnessing in the present political system going on within their immediate communities.
Many among them agree that what is glaringly apparent is how bureaucracy even inspire corruption and become instrumental in broadening its scope. A particular example cited by one student is on how the ‘padreno’ system in bureaucracy abets and encourages corruption and misdeed among local leaders down to the ground.
And it is this same system in government that breeds incompetent public servants.
One of the factors lamented by a survivor during the typhoon ‘Pablo’ debacle that ravaged Barangay Andap was the fact that most people in the community did not understand what was meant by ‘signal number three’. The survivor related that they thought signal number three means the storm was already slowing down and so they stayed in their houses and waited for the storm to pass.
In his words, the survivor said in the vernacular that their barangay officials did not bother to explain to them what these warnings were, nor were they informed about the risks being faced by their community through the years.
Neglect of duty immediately comes to mind upon hearing the man’s complaints. But come to think of it, how can you give something that you do not have? Most of the time these people in local government were put in their places, not because they are capable to serve, but because of kinship, if not “palakasan system.”
That’s why incompetent people proliferate in government. And because they are incompetent, they could not actually serve like they should truthfully and honestly.
That’s why communities like Barangay Andap become vulnerable to calamities because their officials are not doing their jobs.
That’s why the people continue to suffer specially right after the disaster because the incompetent and the greedy in government now rolled into one have become over-greedy that they cannot allow food assistance to go to the devastated communities.
Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on January 19, 2013.