Sunday, January 13, 2008

The miserable treatment we get from our own people

Chief Justice Panganiban for two consecutive columns now (read here and here)in the Inquirer has been writing on the miserable treatment OFW's get from the POEA. The first one was triggered by his daughter's problems getting an exit clearance during the holidays. Panganiban admitted, rather embarrassingly, that he had to personally seek the help of Secretary Brion just so his daughter would not miss the flight back to the US.

Imagine yourself at the airport, your flight three hours away and you are informed haughtily by the almighty civil servants of the POEA/OWWA that sorry you have to line up at the EDSA Office for a clearance.

Apparently, even if you are a direct hire (meaning you didn't go through an employment agency or the POEA), you still had to go to POEA and seek clearance. According to POEA Administrator Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz, the POEA processes are required to monitor the OFW's and facilitate helping them in time of crises. Noble objective really, but is a waiver of government support available somewhere for those who need to catch a flight?

If it's any consolation, Luli Arroyo also got the same shabby treatment from people at the airport so the grumpiness of the people there is just about fairly distributed (unless, of course, you're white, but that's another story).

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