• Sat
  • Aug 30, 2014
  • Updated: 6:14am
My Take
PUBLISHED : Saturday, 09 November, 2013, 3:25am
UPDATED : Sunday, 10 November, 2013, 2:51pm

Aquino apology call reaches fever pitch with Manila sanctions vote

Philippine president Benigno Aquino is right. He should not have to apologise for the hostage tragedy on behalf of his country. Hong Kong's self-righteousness and indignation has reached a feverish pitch, culminating with the passage of a non-binding Legislative Council motion for sanctions on Thursday.

The timing is far from ideal; it just exposes our callousness. Typhoon Haiyan, one of the most powerful ever recorded, slammed into the Philippines while our lawmakers deliberated in the air-con Legco chamber on sanctions.

It has set off landslides, caused blackouts in an entire province and cut communications in the country's central island provinces. At least four people have died but the death toll is expected to rise.

Albert Chan Wai-yip, a pan-democratic People Power lawmaker, launched the motion to impose sanctions against the Philippines unless Aquino cries uncle. The pro-establishment Regina Ip Lau Suk-yee, our ex-security chief, helped with its passage by calling for an end to visa-free access for Philippine visitors to Hong Kong.

Jumping on the bandwagon, Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying has said he supports sanctions. This is perhaps a negotiating tactic, but more likely a cynical ploy to halt his plummeting popularity.

Now that's a political ménage à trois you rarely see in this town. It is, indeed, some kind of political pornography. But if Leung thinks that would help salvage his dwindling public support, I say don't bother. He will get no credit if Aquino apologises, only the blame if he doesn't.

Over the decades, how many Philippine domestic helpers have been mistreated and abused - how many driven to suicide? Should Manila demand an apology and a victims' fund from Hong Kong?

Dr Rizalina Bunyi, 55, was one of the victims killed in the Tiananmen Square terrorist attack last week. Shouldn't Manila now demand a formal apology and compensation from Beijing? How many Hong Kong visitors have been injured or killed in accidents that could be attributed to official negligence on the mainland? Should Beijing apologise?

The families of the victims of the Manila killings deserve closure. But our belligerence will not achieve that for them, only make it worse.

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ricardo.teehankee
I really don't get what this Jihmbo kid's problem is. He's a self-hating Pinoy who likes to imagine himself superior to other Filipinos by constantly criticizing everything about Filipinos and the Philippines.
Look around you, Jihmbo. Even the majority of HK people posting here think that what their government is doing is excessive. So why do you presume to speak for them? You think you know better than they do? What, you saw that HKers themselves weren't supportive of their government's threats, so you thought you should do it for them? Even the people of Hong Kong don't agree with you. Bit presumptuous of you to speak for them, wouldn't you agree?
Get a clue, Jihmbo.
wilfredo.garrido
With the calamity that has befallen our countrymen, the question of apologizing and giving millions of dollars in compensation to the victims is dead and buried. Let us not cite anymore the suffering of Filipinos abroad enumerated by the author. If our government has any money to spare, it should be given to our countrymen in the typhoon-stricken Visayas. Don't kick us when we are down.
ricardo.teehankee
@Jihmbo: You are way out of your league in dealing with me. Hubris? I guess you would know about hubris, judging by your unstoppable compulsion to insult everybody who disagrees with you. You were hostile and insulting to me right from your very first retort to my comment, and as such, your self-righteous prattle comes across as tiresome and hollow.
jihm.ramones
@Rickroll: You say it's unreasonable to demand a sincere apology after all that's happened. (if you don't know the facts, go google it). I say it's unreasonable that we, as Filipinos, regardless of what our president decides, can't earnestly reach out to HK's victims in a positive way. Why the hate? Why the reverse anger? They have the right! Their people died...and they were dissed by our Prez afterwards!!
All I have to say is this, as we Filipinos continue to evolve as a culture (because honestly, our relatively recent history originates is from the fields and bushes if we want to be historically correct, compared to other parts of the word) we will start to understand that PINOY PRIDE is actually a pretty stupid thing. Whoa whoa you say. What? How so? It's good to be proud of who you are and what you stand for, and your background. The problem is too many uneducated folks like yourself get confused with pride and hubris, with the latter usually taking over. If you don't understand this point, then well then that is my whole point. This is not something you can teach. And as for your comment about o exhalted one? Well, you said it, not me. But those that have lost because others have taken the high roud usually rely on sarcasm as a word filler to avoid shame. You brother have just walked into that one.
ricardo.teehankee
Oh, so you were offended by my "exalted one" comment, is that it Jihmbo? Yes, it was sarcasm, but it's not the same as calling someone a small-minded simpleton. And your preceding comment: "LoL. About as sincere as the hooker that told you she loves you", smacks of sarcasm itself. The pot is calling the kettle black, LOL.
But anyway. About Filipinos reaching out to HK's people regardless of what Aquino decided - isn't that exactly what we did? Did you not see the "To all HK people, we Filipinos mourn with you" posters?
I seriously doubt that even a few Filipinos are happy about the outcome of the hostage crisis. They may be indifferent to it at the worst, but happy about it? Of course not.
But you can only continue being sorry for so long when the other person keeps rejects all your apologies and keeps on hating you (especially when you weren't really responsible for what happened in the first place).
Naturally, Filipinos would eventually feel that no apology will ever be enough for them, and that they aren't really concerned about the apology anymore - they just want to humiliate us. It seems that they are blaming the entire Filipino people for what happened and treating us all as enemies.
Not that a superlative ignoramus like you would understand. Even in this comment you insult me, calling me uneducated. You just can't help insulting people who disagree with you. I'd say the epithet of "uneducated" applies to you, Jihmbo.
ricardo.teehankee
But I have to say, the comments here are far more reasonable than I thought they would be... The majority of comments seem to be opposed to the HK government's unreasonable threats and demands. I had expected that this comment page would be overrun with nationalists condemning and threatening the Philippines, along with a heaping side dish of racism and maid insults for good measure. That seems not to be the case.
Though based on what I've seen, one of the reasons the anti-Filipino brigade aren't out in force here is that they are already all over the Philippine newspapers...
jihm.ramones
If you invite people into your home, you treat them as guests.If you do not treat them with respect, you should not expect to be treated as respected guests in their home either.This is a simple matter of ethics and diplomacy.If we Filipinos do not understand this, we should not call ourselves a civilized democratic people and nation.Lest we not forget, a simple apology is exactly that.A simple thing.If our democratically appointed leader cannot even muster up the courage to face accountability and apologize (without a smart-**** smirk), then expect to pay up in 1 form or another and be prepared to have our country, government, people will continue to be viewed as pathetic joke to the rest of the world.If we really want to break down the math of things, we are comparing our hundreds of millions of 'lost' tourist dollars to HK vs the lost BILLION of OFW wages to domestic helpers alone (a year).But all of that are just minor facts about money, relatively unimportant compared to life and death.So let's talk about life and respect instead.Aquino is a elected representative of our country.No respected elected official of a civilized state should have to be reminded to apologize for the loss of life of foreign tourists in his country. If he thinks an apology means "kowtow", then frankly speaking, we're not a very educated country if this is the guy we choose to represent us. I don't care about the visas, but we should not be petty.Take the highroad and say sorry.That's patriotism.
ricardo.teehankee
Yeah, see, the problem is, we've already apologized and the apology was rejected. It seems they really do want Aquino to kowtow to them.
Question. Do you think China should apologize for the Filipina who died in the Tiananmen Square car crash on Oct. 28, 2013?
Let's go farther back, to 2005. Mr. and Mrs. Madrigal, husband and wife, were killed by a deranged man in Tiananmen Square (again). Should China apologize for this too? Because I haven't heard even the slightest hint of an apology from them on either incident.
jihm.ramones
"Already apologized"...LoL. About as sincere as the hooker that told you she loves you.
ricardo.teehankee
And what is your basis for saying that, o exalted one? I mean, since you're obviously such an expert on apologies and can tell whether one is sincere or not.
Oh, and while you're at it, don't forget to answer my questions too. Don't just cherry-pick the parts of my comment you can respond to.
jihm.ramones
Do you know for a fact that the Madrigal family has not been addressed by the Chinese government privately? Have the family expressed displeasure? Who are YOU to speak for the Madrigal or Bunyi family? Either way, do YOU yourself require a public apology? If you do, ask our great leader to ask for one. But Aquino has not, and won't, because he himself hasn't and won't even meet the Filipino family. I think even the likes of you knows that when you apologize you don't smirk. Why doesn't he have the same smirk at his mother's funeral? You RickRoll are one that measures your actions based on others. And that is a sign that you are a small minded simpleton.
ricardo.teehankee
Why the juvenile name-calling, Jihmbo? Have you reached the limit of your intellectual capacity already?
Are you saying that they don't need to apologize because we haven't asked for it? And that we need to apologize simply because they want us to? Wrong, Jihmbo. One apologizes because it is right to apologize, not because the other side asked, or did not ask, for an apology. And in this case, we do not have to apologize any more than we already have.
Anyway, who are YOU to speak for the Madrigal or Bunyi families, Jihmbo? You think that just because they haven't openly "expressed displeasure," they're somehow happy about losing family members? Has it ever occurred to you that maybe they just don't think it's worth the trouble?
Get off your high horse, Jihmbo. You like to think you're some kind of paragon of virtue. Unfortunately, you're just a self-righteous bore.
jihm.ramones
That's not name calling. The description befits you perfectly based on your comments that show an obvious lack of understanding of the facts. And as for my high horse, well you keep on coming back and asking for more, and you put me up here...and exhalted me for that matter. I was just citing facts. You brought up the 2 Filipino families, not me. And you are still talking about them hypothesizing that they "don't think it's worth the trouble". So in fact, you are speaking for them. See what I mean? Small minded simpleton = bingo. Keep talking...it only serves to show how silly you are.
ricardo.teehankee
Calling someone a simpleton, not to mention making fun of someone's name, is name-calling by all definitions, Jihmbo. Anyway it's obvious that you don't see anything wrong with it, and that is okay, as it shows your own lack of civility and intelligence.
Speaking of hypothesizing, what do you think this is, Jihmbo?
"Do you know for a fact that the Madrigal family has not been addressed by the Chinese government privately?"
So apparently, not only are you a ignoramus, Jihmbo, but you're a hypocrite as well. How does it feel to be hoist by your own petard, Jihmbo?
Not to mention that your hypothesizing is the worst, since there is no evidence whatsoever that the Chinese government has ever privately approached either family. You are simply trying - and extravagantly failing - to defend everything the Chinese do.
I brought up the two Filipino families since their situation is quite relevant to this discussion, as it displays the hypocrisy of the Chinese in demanding an apology from us while not giving an apology in a similar situation on their end. It also displays your hypocrisy as well, which you still probably don't see, and that is okay. Nobody ever accused you of being intelligent.
jihm.ramones
Your point, there is no evidence either way, so why talk about it then? You're just talking in circles, and apparently with nothing else better to do by to copy-cat. It's funny reading your comments.
And those 2 incidents you cite have nothing in common with the killing of the tourists in Manila. Go educate yourself and them come back and write something intelligent. I might read and respond then, but I'll likely be riding my high horse that you so generously gave me. LoL, You lose, and that's the last word read sucker.
ricardo.teehankee
Yawn. What, you're still replying, Jihmbo? You're a whiny child presuming to be the equal of adults. The moment I pointed out your hypocrisy, you changed tactics in an attempt to hide it, LOL.
It's getting a bit boring already, seeing as you haven't managed to rebut even one of my arguments. Your style of "argument" is to call your opponent names and then declare that you've won. I'm laughing my **** off here.
Contrary to your ignorant ranting, the parallels between the 2 incidents I mentioned and the bus hostage crisis are quite significant, and they are enumerated in this link:
****sassylawyer.com/2010/08/a-note-from-a-cousin-in-law-about-filipinos-violently-killed-in-beijing-five-years-ago/
It's pretty obvious that you don't know anything about the two incidents. Time to educate yourself by reading up on the writings of legal experts who are far more knowledgeable and intelligent than you will ever be. But I doubt you will. Ignorance is bliss after all.
You're an arrogant pillock whose ego is sadly not matched by your intelligence. I really feel sorry for you, kid.
ricardo.teehankee
I like the way someone on Facebook described Hong Kong's (or should we say China's) demands at this time - it's like kicking someone when he's down. Apparently, some people in China enjoy kicking people when they're down, don't they? Well, I hope you're happy now.
yow.yabut
They dont deserve the apology of the Filipino nation. We are a civilized nation, they should've accepted what was initially sent to them by the Manila envoy. We have a so called THe Filipino Pride dont step down, every dollars that our fellow contrymen earning abroad is all hard earned. We dont owe anyone, especially HK and CHina...Bunch of Crminals Drug Lords who brough Illegal drugs in the Philippines...
no.benta.5
It is alright if most of you HKs dont like us Filipinos and look down on us because we are a poor country and have a bad government which I honestly admit. It is a human nature for people who are economically superior to look down on poor people even in personal level. The pride and arrogance will always be there. Anyway, in my personal belief, I say that life and fortune is like a wheel, it goes up and down. So nobody knows if my country be economically better or far more worse in the future. So for looking down on us, thank you, you are making us stronger as a people despite all the adversaries and tragedies.
no.benta.5
Did our government asked for any apology for maids that were treated badly and abused? We did not because, we have to eat our pride for the sake of the worker's family.
jihm.ramones
Did our government pocket billions into their own pockets? Did our government make sure we are adequately prepared for this year's natural disasters? Will our government set aside the proper budget to deal with 2014,15,16's upcoming natural disasters? Don't come here citing what the government hasn't done. The question we should all be asking is WHAT HAS OUR PH GOVERNMENT DONE FOR US THAT BETTERS ALL OUR LIVES LATELY?
Think about it.
ricardo.teehankee
...You really aren't the sharpest tool in the shed, are you Jihmbo?
no.benta.5
You didn't get the sarcasm.
rocky.art.58
The Hongkong politicians seemed to be ungrateful to the Filipinos. For them it is easy to diminished the Filipinos and yet we served them in almost of their households. The bus tragedy was a tragedy. The Philippine government did not desired what happened. At this time of national tragedy of the Philippines, both 7.2 earthquake and the Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) where thousands perished and almost a million families displaced, we could have received sympathy from the Hongkong government. Majority of the government of the world offered help and support. BUT IT IS UNTHINKABLE TO COME FROM A HIGHLY DEVELOPED COUNTRY like Hongkong to be so cruel to the Philippines at this time.- Pastor Art Tangal, The Harvest Community Church
jihm.ramones
Yeah, the employers should be grateful for their employees more-so than the employees should be grateful to their employers. Yup, this is backwards Filipino "People Power" to the exact definition. Oh and whatever the issue between us is, I need money because we are incompetent. Please give me money boss. Oh, and I'm too proud to apologize, but not proud enough to not take your money. Sometimes my low-life loud-speaking Filipino brothers and sisters make me sick to my stomach.
ricardo.teehankee
So basically, Jihmbo, you have a massive superiority complex and like to imagine that you are superior to all other Filipinos by constantly expressing your rabid hatred of all things Filipino. That's all you are.
michael.michael.1447342
You bunch of idiots forget the reason why the hostage crisis turned into a bungle massacred was because of the PH government right? From the Police Chief and Mayor going to eat and leaving no one in charge, from not taking out the hostage taker even though multiple times he had let his guard down to one of the negotiator standing right next to him and not doing anything? How about sending in a make-shift, half retarded, group of wannabe cops when a elite hostage rescue unit was nearby ready to be used? How about letting the brother of the hostage take coming in to ignite the situation even worst? How about the promise of bringing those responsible for the bungle rescue to justice but then not following up on those promises?
Those of you don't understand, there is NO WAY the Philippine government could reabsorb these 250,000 back home in the Philippine and give them a job with wages from what they make in Hong Kong. All these 250,000 would add to the jobless number. And to say the PH tourist would snub Hong Kong. OH PLEASE! Anyone with a brain would know Hong Kong could easily replace any of these cheap tourist from the Philippines. You guys forget that Hong Kong is not a third world country and is a prosperous nation even before any the OFW maids came.
ricardo.teehankee
You do realize that what you're doing essentially amounts to punishing an entire country for the actions of one man?
Maybe one of these days people like you will stop power-tripping and come to your senses.
And since you even have the nerve to mention Filipino OFWs in Hong Kong, let me just quote from the article for you:
"Over the decades, how many Philippine domestic helpers have been mistreated and abused - how many driven to suicide? Should Manila demand an apology and a victims' fund from Hong Kong?"
As the Bible says, remove the log from your own eye before you try to remove a speck of dust from someone else's eye.
jihm.ramones
@RickRoll: Let's clean up our system before we start quoting the bible brother. Don't cower behind God when there is so much to correct within ourselves. The fact that we can't even help our own countrymen before and after Yolanda speaks volumes. Aircraft carrier? ASEAN power? Foreign investment destination? LoL...come invest your dollars...we'll convert them to pork in our pockets or dead bodies in boxes. We're awesome and we're not going to apologize! Oh by the way, you should give us rescue money. ROFL, only Filipinos would pull such a 2-faced flipflop.
ricardo.teehankee
Jihmbo, your ravings are getting more and more incoherent. You should really stay off the Internet until you've finished grade school at least.
I merely pointed out the obvious hypocrisy of the HK government demanding an apology from us while not offering any apology for Filipinos who die in HK. And then you come out with a meandering, pointless rant involving aircraft carriers, ASEAN power, and foreign investment? Where did you pull all that nonsense from, Jihmbo? That fantasy world that you live in?
frankieychan
Can't agree more and it hurt all HK people's feelings when their President just laughed in front of the media when he was commenting on it
yow.yabut
You HK and CHina is just a bunch of Criminal Drug Lords who bring the Methamphetamine Hydrochloride and Cocaine in the Philippines thats hwy you are rich country. Cowards! YOu cant even beat us in basketball..losers!
jihm.ramones
We can put a ball through a hoop. But we can't feed our own people. Good one Yow.yabut....you really should stop talking because it makes us all look bad.
ricardo.teehankee
You're the one making us look bad, Jihmbo.
frankieychan
Hahah, but we beat u in economy
cobradoris
P
pat.bello.9
I would also like inform everybody that an apology had been sent after the event and it was rejected by the government. The representative of the government was rudely rejected, humiliated and thrown out of the country. If they never recognize that an official apology was sent in the first place then they are not really looking for an apology, but a humiliated nation for the subject of bullying. I wont be surprised if the Mainland has something to do with this.
river.reasonda
This HK move is obvioulsy nothing but an idiotic political move to please the supporters of those who fall victim in that Manila tragedy. Without regard to the likewise countless Filipino victims in HK due to crime or outright abuse by local employers. I agree with Pnoy. This country doesnt need to apologize. At most, if there should be one, then it should be mutual coming from both countries.
As for the sanctions they imposed agains the Philipinnes? These HK politicians are simply ...stupid.
snelderj
it's high time we took the high road, set aside our differences and focus on helping those in need, hkers, have some perspectives plzzzzzzzzzz!! 10,000 people just died and on the rising... very sad indeed, retaliation never solves any problem, just escalate.
tennisboy
The Philippines, after all, is a third world country; it is a sad reality, but how can you blame a government that is unable to protect 10,000 of its own people from a foreseeable storm, let alone protect foreigners from an unforeseeable attack from a terrorist nutcase.
kmarlaltomonte
"but how can you blame a government that is unable to protect 10,000 of its own people from a foreseeable storm, let alone protect foreigners from an unforeseeable attack from a terrorist nutcase" Wow, and preceding that with the Philippines being a third world country.
The recent typhoon is one of the biggest in the world in recent history, bigger than Hurricane Katrina. No living Filipino, or Hongkong citizen for that matter, has ever experienced anything like it. What's your justification for all the deaths and destruction in New Orleans?
Being a poorer nation makes life a struggle in this country, true, and true too that it's a sad reality. But the line that divides stating a fact and being spiteful, isn't thin. Surprised you missed it. And at a time when a nation mourns.
Not demanding an apology from mother nature for the typhoon.
tennisboy
Chan, Ip, Leung--political pornographic ménage a trois--Good one Alex!
Agree with your assessment--CY definitely made the wrong call on this one.
impala
I wonder if we will see the day that CY makes the right call on anything.
xiaoblueleaf
It seems HKers in these days have nothing better to do other than protest for sake of protest. As seen in the typhoon disaster that hit the Philippines killing hundreds, their incompetent government can't even take care of their own problems let alone HK whereas HK as a whole can show a little more compassion. Besides, HK is just a dot on the world map with no geopolitical power nor influence.
caractacus
Quite right, Alex. The double standards at play here are nauseating. The victims and their families are being used by others with ulterior motives.
tksiow
Don't just talk. Go ahead with the sanctions. In addition,make sure that Hong Kong citizens and PR are not allowed to visit the Phillippines.
dienw
Agree with the sentiments but it's "culminating", not "cumulating". Does no one edit these pieces? That's a laughable error.
fsk999
If this tragic fiasco had played out in Hong Kong with a disgruntled HK cop taking Filipino tourists hostage in a coach with a bundled rescue resulting in their deaths, a subsequent inquest and possible enquiry would have resulted in a swift apology by the CE.
However, it is impossible to imagine such a scenario in which local police are allowed to mishandle a serious, life threatening situation to which the hostage negotiator cadre and special duties unit are not swiftly summoned to take control and professionally resolve the situation without loss of innocent life.
johnyuan
I didn’t follow the tragedy from day one. I could be missing some important point that make my following points invalid.
.
An apology should be made from Philippine government (mayor or even the president). It was not a natural disastrous that had caused those Hong Kong tourists meeting their early death. It was an incompetent rescue work by government. The government should have the courage to apologize to all the casualties much earlier for the lack of protection of their guests in their care. The Philippine government should in addition to the delinquency of that apology to include another apology to Hong Kong for late giving an apology. It’s right humanly and diplomatically all around. It is wrong (no apology) for no reason.
.
Hong Kong may not have the diplomatic status; Central China should press for the apologies. I have confidence things will come to an equitable end.
.
It will not disappear until it is so because China will not be bullied too.
caractacus
I laugh when xenophobes / Chinese chauvinists like you adopt the double standard and paint China as the bullied victim, yet never see things the other way round.
johnyuan
car..
It is a big mouthful from you. Problems can't be solved like that. Take one thing at a time and you may see you have overstated about my post.
.
Be peace and calm with you.
marian
for you information the mayor of Manila has already apologized and gave compensation. the politicians of HK is just using this issue to make "positive" PR with their current beleaguered image.
johnyuan
marian,
So please allow me to change my stance. And thank you for telling me.
.
Strange why all postings seem in their discourse never mention so. I missed the news on that.
XYZ
I believe the victims' families' insistence on an apology from the president of the Philippines and monetary compensation is a cause that does not justify entangling the entire Hong Kong community in their private crusade.
whymak
Forget about governments. Time to open your wallets for Typhoon Haiyan victims just like what we did during Sichuan earthquake. Last I checked, Philippine Red Cross website doesn't take charge cards.
CY should stop pandering to Hong Kong morons.
 
 
 
 
 

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