Are we really healing as one? Are we really as one?
In one barangay just around here, a considerable number of senior citizens, solo parents, people who are currently unpaid, and others of the like grumble of not having received social amelioration cash. Such inequality may be explained away in missed qualifications according to policies, scarcity of funds and/or whatever valid or invalid reason. But the oversight (if it really is so) could have been somewhat understandable, had citizens not openly seen the punong barangay’s, kagawads’ and tanods’ whole clans, both husbands and wives of each family(even those with booming businesses and paying professions) , all receive thousands worth of payout. I’ll add that to the pile of the mentally tormenting social amelioration problems that have been plaguing the barangays. This is simply appalling to the point that I could not find myself to verbally rant anymore in the melancholic murmurs; that I drift in silence to contemplate in this phenomenon, to keep myself from further aggravating the problem and ponder on the optimum solution on the matter (if ever, there is). But my thoughts only bring me to the possibilities of similar incidents across the checkpoint barricades. Is this how we heal as one?
As I’m writing this, my sister is holding a card with the number 91, hopefully sitting under the roof of the covered court in close proximity to the municipal hall, waiting her turn to secure some border pass to get across the neighboring city to get money so we could stack up supplies. She got there by taking a pedicab all the way to the town center. Of course, a just fare had to be paid for someone who pedals that far. Jeepneys are not yet allowed to run their trade; and not all municipalities have passenger tricycles that go around them. So for a person to move around, he/she has to get these passes, a pass to work, a pass to buy groceries, a pass to open your business, a pass for medical check-up; and these passes have created quite a crowd in City Hall.
When I was watching the Naga Smiles to the World live video on the eve of the implementation of the general community quarantine, and the public was being oriented on these rules. Someone asked about travelling from Naga to Iriga. The response and solution given: ask your personal acquaintances residing in your destination city/municipality to check the local rules there. So, what about the local policies along the way, from Pili to Nabua?
I get the transport fare adjustment and the one passenger rule; but why do they have to impose number coding? With only one passenger per ride, more tricycles are needed. With the number coding rule in place, there would be fewer tricycles out on the road. Result: a ride is so hard to get by and one has to resort to good old fashioned walking, in the most scorching time of the year. What is interesting is that over TV broadcast, Mr. Harry Roque would reiterate that local government units do not have authority to add their own policies to the national GCQ rules. So, what’s happening here? At least one local government, and probably others also have their own version of GCQ. Local officials may be feeling proud and confident for drafting some potentially foolproof rules to keep infection at bay; but if one city imposes a set of rules and another municipality does not, and this pattern goes on around the province and the region, these local policies would only create chaos and confusion. Is this how we heal as one?
In the national level, a mere attached agency of implementation of information and communication appears to be mor powerful over legislation and execution of justice; and legal representation deviates from the highest authority of the state. This is actually what is happening with the National Telecommunications Commission unbelievably exercising authority regardless of the authority of the Senate and Congress, and the Department of Justice by imposing a cease and desist order against its commitment with the national legislative bodies and the stand of the justice department. What does that make them? Higher authority? This is actually what happens when Sec. Salvador Panelo expresses his personal interpretations on invasion of virus as ground for declaration of martial law, which has been negated by the President he should be representing. What does that make him? Another body of authority independent of the President? Perhaps, this is how we heal…. As one.
Kanya-kanyang pagmamarunong at pagpapabida
“I appeal to you, brothers and sisters, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree with one another in what you say and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly united in mind and thought.“ 1 Corinthians 1:10