TV 5 Refuses to Aid the “Kapatid” they Wounded
Found this note about how TV 5, with the billions of pesos awaiting their disposal, refuses to financially aid a woman of below-minimum income who was involved in an accident with one of their camera men as the one at fault.
This is a very serious matter. It concerns morality and social discrimination. The usual “You have billions yet you can’t give me a cent as help” matter is brought up. Please read this and spread it around.
TV5 has been proudly flaunting the billions of investments it plans to pour into the TV5 network.
There is the almost utopian vision to build a media conglomerate composed of cable channels, radio stations, publishing, etc., etc.
Bravo, bravo! But pray tell, how do they treat the least of their brothers, or in Filipino, ”kapatid”?
For almost seven weeks now, I’ve been getting the best seat in the house…And before you say I am overreacting, let me present my case, or rather the case of my cousin Gila Malu F. Combo, a mother of two, a sewer at a garments factory who earns below minimum wage.
• A red Channel 5 Toyota closed van with plate number NIX 497 hit Malu on June 11, 2010, 6 p.m. in front of Channel 5 along Quirino ave. in QC. The driver was Rolando Bolay-og, camera man of Channel 5.
• Malu was rushed to the Bernardino Hospital near Holy Cross in Novaliches and the CT scan and ultrasound revealed a fractured left side of the head. She’s been having severe headaches and has been intermittently going to work since then because of many obligations to her family. So for a factory worker like her, what does no work mean? No pay, of course!
• The driver paid for the doctors’ fees but got all the original papers including the scans. Driver asked Malu to sign a waiver on the day of the accident, before they got the results of the CT scan. (See attached waiver)
• Ang galing ng driver, may waiver na agad at ang bilis ng pagkakasulat, and notarized agad without witnesses. I began to question, ano ito, ready pro forma ng Channel 5?
• My cousin said she was confused and was almost forced to sign that waiver, and also because the driver would not pay for the hospital bills if she did not sign. Natakot ang cousin ko kasi media daw siya. They did not have him blottered until three days later after I told them to do so.
• After Malu signed the waiver, yumabang na ang driver, texting my cousin na maghintay na lang kung ano ang decision ng ‘’opisina’’ nila. His text went ”masyado kasi kayong nagpapanic eh hindi lang naman kasi kayo ang pasiente kaya sana maintindihan ninyo kung late po ng konte ang pagbigay sa inyo ng resulta. ang gusto kasi ninyo agad agad hindi naman po pwede ang ganun. isa pa hindi kami tanga para ipawalang bahala namin ang paghihintay niyo. masyado kasi kayo nagmamadali, isa pa two weeks ang binigay sa inyo ng observation bakit nagamamadali kayo?”
• At this point, they already asked for whatever help I could extend. My cousin had to stop working and wanted to go to a more reliable hospital because of the skull fracture and the other pains she has been experiencing since the accident.
• I called up Sherryl Yao, a friend, who is I think the Public Service director of TV5 now.
• Sherryl was kind enough to convey the facts to TV5 News Operations head DJ Sta. Ana who apparently already knew about the accident but allegedly did not know about the fracture on the skull. I told Sherryl that my cousin was requesting if she could reimburse the lost income she would be incurring in the next two weeks that she would not work as prescribed by the doctor.
• After several exchange of phone calls and text messages, Sherryl told me that they could not reimburse. Wala daw kasing resibo. Where in the world can accident victims get a receipt for being hurt? Does the BIR issue this? Meron ba sa ilalim ng underpass nito?
• Sherryl then said ‘papasamahan niya sa PCSO or sa PAGCOR ang cousin ko kasi she was thinking of the possible long-term damage that the accident may have caused. And since she is running a department and not yet a foundation, ”wala silang budget.”
But why would they refer my cousin to PCSO or PAGCOR like a desperate indigent when TV5 disadvantaged her and caused her pain and loss of income? Sherryl said reporter Cheryl Cosim is ‘’malakas’’ with PCSO so for sure, may makukuhang tulong. I didn’t like the way it sounded because someone was responsible for the accident, and it was not PCSO or PAGCOR!
• I told Sherryl that my cousin only earns P2,800 for two weeks, being an underpaid, abused laborer. When she found out about the price, she said ‘’O kaya na ni DJ yan. Akala ko naman kasi malaki.’’
• Sherryl asked me for my cousin’s phone number and said they would call her. To this day, no call came from Sherryl’s department.
• Realizing that my first attempt might not amount to anything, I then went to my next recourse – Peachy Guioguio, PR consultant of TV5, and a good friend.
• On June 20, Father’s Day, I called Peachy and told her what has happened. I emailed her the facts and the scanned hospital papers including the questionable waiver. I told her that these were the things I wanted to happen:
1. For Malou to be reimbursed for her lost income. Sherryl said they cannot do it because walang resibo? WTF!!
2. Should anything happen to her because of the fracture on her skull, the company would support her hospitalization and medical expenses?
3. To sanction that smug driver who brandished his being media and took advantage of the weakness of my cousins and made her sign a waiver.
• Peachy promised to help. And she did, because the next week, at a high-level meeting that she attended, she informed TV5 News and Public Affairs division head Luchi Cruz Valdez about it. Luchi reportedly promised Peachy that she would look into the matter.
• On the evening of June 23, I got a call from Sherryl Yao and she was hysterically crying. Sinabon daw siya ni Luchi and she was just trying to help and bridge the communication between DJ and me. I told Peachy to just fix it and they talked.
• The following day I texted Sherryl if there was any update from her end. She did not answer. Maybe the SMART lines were not working at that time? I haven’t heard from the PUBLIC SERVICE director since.
I texted Peachy the same message and Peachy replied and told me she gave my number to Luchi. And then we thought things would be okay from then on…
FOUR WEEKS LATER….
• Last Tuesday, my sister got a message from my cousin saying that nobody from TV5 has talked to them or visited them. And because I told them that they would be contacted, they did not bother me or TV5 anymore and just waited. But my cousin Malu was already in so much pain after 41 days. Hindi na siguro nakatiis and sent us a message. The driver, she said, was even blaming her. ‘’Kasi pinarating niyo pa sa legal kaya maghintay na lang kayo,’’ went the driver’s text
• I was surprised that nothing had happened even after the higher-ups have learned about it. Take note – lahat sila ‘’BOSSES’’ including News and Public Affairs Head Atty Dan de Padua, EVP and COO Bobby Barreiro and Luchi, DJ Sta. Ana and Sherryl Yao!
• I called Peachy last Tuesday, already frustrated asking her what had happened to the case. She said she would follow up and then later texted that a certain Pierre of TV5 would be calling me.
• Yesterday, Wednesday, I texted Peachy again to follow up, and asked for Pierre’s number instead. She texted me the land line number of TV5 which I tried calling for more than an hour. Somebody finally picked up after an hour and asked me who among the two Pierres was I looking for, the one from Finance or the one from CorpServe? Since I did not have Pierre’s last name, I just guessed that it was the one from Corp Serve. The call did not go through.
• Frustrated, I called Peachy again to ask if I could get Pierre’s cell number because I could not get through him. She said she could not give it to me.
• Minutes later, a certain Pierre Buhay called, using his mobile phone. I asked him why it was taking TV5 too long to at least signify that they know about the case. He said he just recently found out about the case and that it was better if we could just ”move forward,” and that if I could text him the address and name of my cousin.
• I did not text him the info yet. I realized that if he, the person supposedly responsible to take care of this case, had learned about it just now, what had been happening all along that this poor, hapless woman was waiting for help? Whatever happened to the promises to look into it? My cousin’s been suffering from severe headaches already. And even when her CT scan said her internal organs were ok, she has been experiencing pain on the side of her body after the accident too.
• After Pierre, I then got another call from a land phone, from a certain Danny Guillarte of Metropolitan Insurance, telling me that an adjuster would call me to ask me about details. I asked Mr. Guillarte if I could have his mobile number so I could follow up. His answer ‘’Sira ang telepono ko eh.’’ The call from the adjuster never came too.
• It’s been 41 days since the accident. I thought I went to the right people but I apparently was wrong. But where else do we go since all of the people on top have already been informed of this. Kay Manny Pangilinan na ang susunod?? What about people who do not have the least bit access? How ”well” are they treated? Or do they just sign the mahiwagang waiver and just charge everything to experience?
• I vented on Facebook, and got a call from Peachy.
• This morning, through some help from another close friend who is close to Atty. Dan de Padua, I got a text message from Pierre Buhay asking for some details. According to both Peachy and Atty. Dan, this Pierre already knew of this case long before, contrary to what he told me that he just learned about the case.
• So where did the buck stop? And who was telling the truth? And whatever happened to Rolando, the smug driver who flaunted his being a ”media man,’’ who proudly pulled an instant waiver from the air? These people better pray that nothing of this sort would happen to them or their loved ones. Or that they do not become dirt poor so as not to afford decent hospitalization.
I have not spoken about this with anybody — until today. I have had it up to here with this KAPATID network. Sino ba ang KAPATID nila?
They may have billions of investments that they have been trumpeting they would pour into the network, but if they cannot help the least of their brothers, or the very people whom they have hurt in the first place, what good would those riches and ratings do?
July 22, 2010
The said waiver
The CT Scan