Akbayan’s OFW parasite and con manBy Rigoberto Tiglao
Philippine Daily Inquirer
When President Aquino needs to hit his enemies, and make it appear as if the “masses” are doing it, he calls on his fake party-list Akbayan. Aping its boss, when Akbayan needs to badmouth its critics, it calls on its letter-to-the-editor-writing trolls, and in my case recently, on a bogus OFW leader in Greece, one Jose Valencia.
I was hoping that Akbayan would have principled leaders who would explain why its report on contributors to its electoral campaign kitty in 2010 showed a handful of “ruling-class” contributors, mainly Mr. Aquino’s sisters and cousins and Chinese-Filipino tycoons close to the President. I thought they could explain why a dead man and individuals living in poor neighborhoods could donate as much as P1 million individually for Akbayan.
But they’ve refused to answer my questions and instead just ordered their attack dogs to impugn my integrity. I cannot allow this to pass.
It’s high time to expose Akbayan’s OFW parasite and con artist in Athens and put everything on the record, especially since he and his gang called Kasapi Hellas very well illustrate this phony party-list entity’s modus operandi in pretending to represent marginalized sectors.
While claiming not only to be an OFW but a leader of OFWs, Mr. Valencia is neither officially a Filipino nor a worker.
In 1993 the ambassador in Greece then, the late Norberto Basilio, offered to issue Valencia a Filipino passport so he can visit Manila to see the situation there. The reason he did this was that Valencia had organized a demonstration against then President Fidel Ramos during his state visit in Athens, claiming that there was a military dictatorship in the Philippines.
Valencia refused to get a Filipino passport. Why? Valencia has been able to live in Greece because of his claim—to this day—that he is a “political refugee” from the Marcos dictatorship. The embassy’s issuing him a passport would have overturned his “asylum” status in Greece. Anything to avoid being called a TNT in Europe.
What’s Valencia doing in Greece? He is formerly one of the clerics-turned-communist in the circle of the Netherlands-based former priest, Luis Jalandoni of the National Democratic Front. Valencia didn’t even bother to officially leave the priesthood, although he has been living with somebody whom he introduces as his wife. He was assigned to organize OFWs in Italy and Athens, but left the NDF when he couldn’t account for the funds given him. Similarly, Akbayan’s leaders are mostly defectors from the NDF.
Valencia has never really worked a single day in his life, but has been a parasite of OFWs. Since his arrival in Greece, his income has been skimmed from donations from European NGOs and socialist parties, which he managed to fool that he had a “labor center” taking care of OFWs and other migrant workers.
Similarly, nearly all of Akbayan leaders have never really worked in their lives but have relied on “allowances,” unreported to the BIR, from overseas NGOs. Yet they have the gall to claim that they represent “marginalized sectors.”
Valencia has pretended to champion migrant workers’ rights, since this provides him his income taken from European NGOs’ donations. Valencia claims that he and his gang represent OFWs in Greece. Yet when I was ambassador in Athens, Valencia not once attended the twice-a-month meetings of the coordinating committee representing 34 OFW organizations in Greece, whose members detest Valencia as an arrogant leftist.
It gets worse: He has been a tool of a Filipina married to a sleazy Greek labor lawyer who had been pressuring me ever since I was posted in Greece in 2005 to recognize her colorum school, so as to legitimize it. This fake school had been charging high tuition for OFWs’ children, who would find out later that the school is not recognized by Greek and Philippine authorities. I had received many calls in Athens from Manila from crying mothers complaining that the “grades” issued by this fake school to their children were worthless.
Valencia had assumed a stake in that school, as his own colorum school was closed by Greek authorities in January 2010.
In his letter to the editor in this paper (11/14/12), Valencia boasted that he “with other OFWs” succeeded in ousting me with their demonstration at the embassy on Oct. 10, 2010.
However, I and all ambassadors who were political appointees of President Arroyo already received in July orders to return home by Sept. 30, with President Aquino graciously giving us three months since he assumed office on June 30 to wind up our affairs.
So why did Valencia still undertake that demonstration to oust me on Oct. 10, and to this day claim credit for my “removal”?
I learned months later why. It was a classic operation by a con man. Valencia told the colorum-school operator that he can pressure Manila to remove me as ambassador, to be replaced by a more “cooperative” envoy. But he needs “mobilization” funds—I was told around 10,000 euros—to campaign through his “contacts in Manila” and especially to undertake the demonstration at the embassy to force the foreign affairs department to order me home. Valencia even promised the fake-school operator that he will return the funds in case I am not removed.
It was a risk-free venture for Valencia: He knew that I was already ordered home, that I was even already starting to pack our personal effects. I would learn only later how he got this information.
Details of this discussion can be found in the former website of the Philippine embassy in Greece (www.athenspe.net), which I have maintained knowing that Valencia would continue with his lies. The website also documents my performance as Philippine ambassador to Greece, which I have been proud of.
More from this Column:
Short URL: http://opinion.inquirer.net/?p=41263