"..a bardy view!"

Janine Tugonon brings the House down!

janine tuganon

As if the Philippines House of Representatives didn’t have enough to discuss, they found time recently to suspend business in order to honour Janine Tugonon.

What has the 23 year old achieved in order to earn this prestigious commendation?

Did she win the Nobel Peace Prize? Is she in the vanguard to alleviate poverty? Does she head up a charity to fight world hunger? Has she discovered a cure for malaria? Has she devoted half of her life to campaign on the environment? is she a UNICEF Ambassador?

Sadly none of these things – she has in fact achieved something much more worthwhile, she was the first runner up in the Miss Universe pageant.

Note the term “first runner up” – a euphemism for coming second. Yes, she didn’t even win it!

Ms Tugonon’s claim to fame is that she is a beauty queen.

So beautiful in fact that House Representative Lani Mercado-Revilla of Bacoor City introduced a resolution to honour her, which was easily passed by the lower chamber, resulting in the lawmakers suspending their
sessions in order to meet and applaud her. Apparently her achievement has “earned the admiration of Filipinos around the world”.

What, one wonders, would have happened had she won? No doubt a public holiday would ensue, preceded by President Aquino pinning a medal to her ample bosom.

The proposer (Mrs Mercado-Revilla), other than being a member of the House of Representatives, is also an actress, married to fellow actor and senator Bong Revilla.

Her recent exposure was last December when she became embroiled in the Reproductive Health Bill; appealing for “sobriety to avoid making reckless actions” during one of the proceedings of the Bill (no 4244).

It was notable because she asked for certain portions of the transcript to be removed. She took particular umbrage to the remarks of a fellow representative (Rodante Marcoleta) who said that her husband “is so
fertile that just passing him by can make you pregnant”

Every Bong is good for a Bang presumably.

Anyway, her emotional dramatic performance didn’t wash with the deputy speaker Lorenzo Tanada III, whom she accused of being arrogant (too bad there isn’t a TV Channel for all this), who was heard to say “I don’t
care if she gets angry, she must learn to follow the rules”

Since then Marcoleta has apologised for Bong bashing, and Tanada also apologised saying he didn’t mean to hurt Lani’s feelings.

The deputy speaker implied that he was rather tired – having presided for two consecutive days on the RH Bill, “which may have made his tone condescending”.

Since then of course, Lani has popped up again, this time proposing a very important cause – ie recognising the fact that Miss Philippines came second in Donald Trump’s Miss Universe competition (which incidentally was won by Miss USA) in Las Vegas.

(If you are exhausted reading this, I admire your constitution for getting this far, but spare a thought for your humble author who chose to write this stuff.)

What does it all mean? Before I answer that, it’s important to know that I am an advocate for the Filipino people, that I am a concerned observer, and that I care deeply about that country.

But as an intelligent and fair critic, modest and without malice, I fear for the nation because it is led by people who are at best naive or ignorant, and at worst just downright self-serving.

Senators are more likely to be personalities from television and film, or the sporting arena, who rely on the electorate to vote for them because of the image, and not the substance.

There are major issues confronting the Philippines. Corruption, over population, poverty, conservation, exploitation, health care, unemployment, deforestation, marine destruction, deprivation, slums, housing,
terrorism, infrastructure, territorial disputes, and an exported workforce doing menial tasks around the world who are not protected by their government and used and abused, yet still expected to pay their dues to the

The Philippines Tourist Agency proclaims the country as the place to visit, yet fails to mention that there is not one direct flight from Europe, and the last (KLM/Air France – Amsterdam to Manila) has suspended
its service.

It fails to mention that Philippine Airlines (PAL) is not permitted by the European Union to operate in it’s airspace. It fails to mention that PAL is controlled by the huge conglomerate San Miguel Corp.

A brewery controlling the national airline! It’s enough to drive you to drink!

In the meantime that seat of state, with all its incumbency suspends it’s activity to ogle and reward a beauty queen.

It’s as if the Philippine Islands are a mere playground for the elite.

It is in fact the world’s largest and best golf club. Full of privilege for the wealthy and the rest merely wander aimlessly around it seeking the lost balls.

Update: PAL finally met EU status in November 2013 and are now flying direct non stop from London Heathrow to Manila twice a week.




February 6, 2013 - Posted by | Arts, Conservation, Culture, Current Affairs, Education, Europe, Events, General, Humour, Politics, Religion, The Philippines, Travel | , , , , , , , , , ,

1 Comment »

  1. A sad, sad, tale.


    Comment by spookmoor | August 29, 2014 | Reply

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