all in a day’s work

I heard from the news that the Philippine president appointed both her gardener and her manicurist as members of the board of trustees of two government-controlled corporations. The appointments carry fixed terms (for two years) and will earn for each of the appointees around P1.5 million pesos in guaranteed allowances per year (roughly ten times the average annual family income). I have nothing against the two lucky employees as I am sure they are honest and capable workers who served the president well, but this sure smells like an over-the-top going-away present (the president’s term expires in two months). Given that the act is discretionary (she’s still the president afterall), it still smacks of impropriety (why them instead of others who may be more qualified to assume the post)? Why now when her term is about to end? While I have nothing against dying heiresses who leave their fortunes to their maids or to their dogs (I couldn’t care less), I have something against politicians who make midnight appointments as parting gifts to underlings (and who treat government positions as personal favors). This has got to be the mother of all tips! Only in the Philippines!


2 Comments Add yours

  1. Guagua Girl says:

    i find it funny that the pag-ibig fund president said board members take home only about P10,000 a month, so really it's only P120,000 — that's not too big. completely missing the point about the impropriety of the appointment.

    unfortunately, “midnight appointments” such as these are not rare at all. i recall some brouhaha over last-minute appointments during the bush and clinton administrations.

    what troubles me most are the stories about arroyo maneuvering to secure speakership of the house. what's with this woman and her seeming thirst for power?!?!


  2. Betis Boy says:

    I heard on the radio that it's really not just P10,000/monthly in allowances. Apparently, not everything is being disclosed as far as allowances are concerned. Hopefully, somebody digs up further. But then you're right, the amount is beside the point. It's the delicadeza of it all. Just like Villar and his lobbying with the Philippine Stock Exchange board when he was still Senate President. He said he didn't break any law. In this country, everything is legal. But what is legal is not necessarily ethical. And what is ethical is not necessarily moral.


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