March 24, 2017, 12:26 pm
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CA vs Mine Regulator

GINA Lopez is Du30’s nominee as Regulator determined to close down those inefficient and illegally managed mines that cause community illness, exploitation, deprivation. The Commission on Appointments (CA) is judge and jury whether or not to confirm the Regulator.

Opinion columnist Cito Beltran inarguably stated the facts when he wrote: “...Why was the ‘would-be regulator’ [Gina Lopez of DENR] being prosecuted, persecuted and publicly rejected by those who were supposed to be regulated?... Why were [CA members] publicly known to be investors, associates and beneficiaries of mining firms allowed to participate... as critic or persecutor to punch up Gina Lopez....

Shouldn’t they have opted to abstain.... Why were they not told to inhibit themselves? Or have they lost every ounce of delicadeza, correctness, or common decency?”

Wellex Mines covering 3700 hectares of gold, chromite, nickle, etc. mines is owned by Commission on Appointments member Sen. Sherwin (Win) Ting Gatchalian and his family owns Wellex Group of Companies. His father, and a few other Gatchalians are in the website of Wellex, all holding managing roles in their family mines. DZMM’s Ted Faylon shared with us listeners what he learned when he Googled ‘Wellex’. 

Commission on Appointments member Senator Manny Pacquiao was anxiously, unexplainably irritated at Gina Lopez during her presentation at her appointment confirmation hearing. Paquiao did not want the public to hear much more from Gina Lopez. 

Paquiao kept interrupting Gina Lopez. At one point, he outright asked her to quit; to give the illegal miners a chance to present their side. Why so? 

Because Manny Pacquiao owns a mine. Yet, he was allowed to stay as member of the Commission on Appointment despite the conflict of interest. Pacquiao claims of course, that the mine belongs to his family, but the public is aware that only one in that family--Pacman alone--has the cash to buy, finance, manage a mine. The Pacquiaos have been candid in stories that this family lived all these decades deprived and impoverished. Wherefrom the brother’s cash for a mine but from boxing champ, Pacman! 

None of their peers thought to make the motion that Gatchalian, Pacquiao, etc. with vested interest in mining, decently abstain, inhibit themselves from the Gina Lopez hearing. 

My impatience with the Senate’s oversight in the case of Pacquiao is my dislike for the lure he puts on young boys to go into boxing. Instead of building boxing gyms, why not fund science, medical and technology scholarships? 

Next to gladiators, I see boxing as the most inhumane entertainment. Boxers earn their living through violence; knocking another human to the floor, or better, beaten unconscious, brain dead on the tarp... 

 “Be a plumber, a mechanic, an engineer. But don’t be a boxer to spend the rest of your life in a zombie-state like ex-boxers who usually are impoverished in their old age....” warned Mohammed Ali in his biography.

In the not too distant past, gladiators are let out in arenas to slice, bite each other to the death; lions chased and devoured humans. This is the entertainment of bored, wealthy people. Same type of wealthy people today pay enormous ticket prices to be entertained by two humans trying to destroy each other. Ticket prices that they would never think to donate to the Red Cross or the local orphanage.

Being a resident, I can always get media tickets to Pacquiao’s punch-to-the-death fights in Las Vegas arenas, not too far from my Las Vegas home. I do request for a media ticket just to bond with visiting Filipino newswriter-friends. Then, I leave when the fights begin, and throw my tickets away.

***

Dahliaspillera@yahoo.com
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