Monday, August 24, 2009

Miriam and the infomercials

The feisty lady senator is at it again.  Senate Committee on Economics Affairs Chair Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago lambasted the high-ranking government officials and cabinet members for spending millions of pesos for infomercials.   The timing of these infomercials are questionable the fact that the 2010 National Elections are just a few months away. 

Quoted from the Senator's blog, Miriam said “Unless a person is blind, deaf, or dumb, it is crystal clear that the alleged infomercials of cabinet members are intended to camouflage the violation of the campaign ban, for the simple reason that these cabinet members engage only in such infomercials in the year prior to election year and at no other time, and for no other reason than personal political publicity.

I say she's darn right!   Why would these infomercials sprout like mushrooms at this time of the year if not for early political publicity?  Why would these officials put their names and faces in these infomercials if their sole purpose is to inform the public of their Department's respective campaigns?  Are their faces really necessary?  And the timing is blatantly a give away to their hidden agenda, don't you think?  Miriam was right in calling these government officials "dimwitted rhinos" for being so thick. 

In a report by GMA News, at least P298 million of public funds were spent for these so-called government infomercials. How many people can be fed with P298 million? How many jobs can be created with that? How many schools and homes can be constructed with that?  How urgent and important are these infomercials that they had to come before REAL public service?

In the hot seat are the following officials who appeared in the much-circulated infomercials:
  • Vice-President Noli de Castro 
  • Interior and Local Government Secretary Ronaldo Puno 
  • Health Secretary Francisco Duque III 
  • Finance Secretary Margarito Teves 
  • Defense Secretary Gilberto Teodoro 
  • Public Works and Highway Secretary Hermogenes Ebdane 
  • Education Secretary Jesli Lapus 
  • Agrarian Reform Secretary Nasser Pangandaman 
  • Philippine Amusements and Gaming Corporation (Pagcor) Chair Ephraim Genuino 
  • Technical Education and Skills Development Authority Chair (Tesda) Augusto Syjuco 
  • Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) Chair Bayani Fernando 
  • Makati Mayor Jejomar Binay 
Let's wait for these rhinos' long-delayed official statements on Miriam's inquisitions but for now, I admire the lady senator for bringing it up and questioning the money involved, the legalities surrounding this issue, and what the COMELEC can do.  If they could always get away with technicality, then it's time to change some rules that have always been made as scapegoats. 


  1. if there is a campaign ban, then, these officials should really answer their infomercials, campaigning in the guide of information dissemination?

  2. I agree that it's an issue, but I also think that Miriam is just reacting too much. She's said her piece, then they should move on with their 'investigation' and then proceed with drafting the legislation to avoid this happening again. Puro bashing kasi yung pinapakita sa news when they feature Miriam in the senate talking about the infomercials.

  3. I have to agree with Miriam Defensor in this issue but I'm doubting if this is all a show for her. If someone gets what they deserve in the end - then good for us. But let's be realistic, I'm pretty sure nothing would happen in the end. P0liticians and their endless childish games!

  4. Betchai, Ver, Reel Advice - thanks for commenting. Yeah let's hope there's a fair and just ending on this issue and not just end up as another useless political show.

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