“Politics by deception” may have reared its ugly head during the recent Bohol sortie of Vice Pres. Jejomar Binay who used for propaganda mileage a supposed â€œemotional reunionâ€ between a deported Boholana overseas Filipino (OFW) and her young son.
It was believed that the mother and child were totally unaware of the political intent used to slant their sad plight .
It could be a gimmick or not in this election season, but the publications in national media and posts on different social media sites apparently fed by the vice presidentâ€™s camp are misleading and disturbing, according to Bohol OFW Affairs in-charge Reinerio Augusto Real.
During the weekly press forum at the Governorâ€™s Mansion, some members of the Bohol media said the â€œinaccuraciesâ€ must be corrected.
Binayâ€™s propaganda items of similar content identified the OFW as Rosemarie Solon, a native of barangay Bagacay in Talibon, Bohol, and her young child â€œJasven.â€
Real handled Solonâ€™s case since early 2011 when she wrote for help from the provincial government for the repatriation of her then one-year-old child, whom she left in Kuwait . The baby boy was repatriated to the PhilippinesÂ to Bohol in April 2012.
Solon gave birth to the child in Kuwait out of wedlock.Â The childâ€™s father, then a boyfriend of his mother, is a divorced Kuwaiti national.
Deported from Kuwait in February 2011 for an expired working visa, Solon was then forced to leave her child to the keeps and care of her OFW friends and returned home alone.
Lack of money and proper documents for her son had then prevented the OFW from bringing along with her the child.
After Binayâ€™s Bohol visit the other week, one propaganda item posted onÂ politics.com.phÂ site reads: â€œDespite his busy schedule, Binay took time off from his Bohol sortie to witness the emotional reunion between mother and son at the provincial airport.â€
â€œNagpapasalamat ako sa kanya (Binay) ng malaki dahil itong anak ko nandito na. Maraming, maraming salamat po sa kanya sa lahat-lahat,â€ said similar posts on other â€œnewsâ€ websites, including the Boodle News, quoting Solon as saying it â€œwhen she met her son again at the Bohol airport.â€
OFWs across the globe were tagged in the post.
Real was also disturbed by a front page group picture, believed to be provided by Binayâ€™s camp, published in the Manila Bulletin on January 11, this year, which shows Binay, Solon, her son and others in the supposed reunion at the airport.
Its caption reads: â€œGRATEFUL FAMILY â€“ Overseas Filipina Worker Rosemarie Solon (with microphone) thanks Vice President Jejomar Binay who helped repatriate her son Jasven who was born without proper documentation in Kuwait. Solon was forced to leave her son with friends after she was deported from the Middle East country for working with an expired visa. Binay was able to secure an exit visa for Jasven and arranged that Solon and her mother be at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) to meet him before their trip home to Bohol.â€
Distributing to the Bohol media copies of the published photo release, Real corrected that the woman â€œwith microphoneâ€ was not Solon, although the latter also does appear in the picture beside Binay.
Reports here said that during Binayâ€™s recent Bohol visit, a â€œreunionâ€ meeting for â€œphoto opportunityâ€ was arranged for Binay, the OFW mother and her child who had already grownÂ up since arriving and staying in Talibon for almost four years now.
His office claimed that Binay, who is running for president, was â€œinstrumentalâ€ to the exit clearance for the child and his repatriation.
Putting the records straight, â€œminus politics,â€ Real said the child, now five or six years old, was repatriated from Kuwait and arrived in his motherâ€™s hometown in April 2012.
Solon had gone home a year earlier in February 2011 after her deportation and in the same month he wrote to Gov. Edgar Chatto for help to repatriate her child.
Real said that in one of the governorâ€™s working schedules at his Talibon extension office in 2011, Solonâ€™s mother also sought the governorâ€™s help.
The OFW desk officer recalled that the governor also had the DSWD-Bohol then immediately conducting a social case study to support the provincial governmentâ€™s requests to proper national agencies in response to the Solon familyâ€™s appeal.
These agencies include the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), Philippine Embassy in Kuwait and Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA).
Real showed file records of the governorâ€™s similar letters, thru the OFW Desk officer, raising the concern to Binay, who was then designated by Pres. Benigno S. Aquino III as Presidential Adviser for OFW Concerns, and even former Vice Pres. Noli de Castro.
On his file, Real said De Castro responded by formally referring the case to OWWA and asked the agency to assist in the immediate repatriation of the child.Â De Castroâ€™s letter was furnished to the governor and the childâ€™s mother herself.
Real said the province is thankful anyway for all help that the office of Binay, as then presidential OFW adviser, might have extended to the case of Solon and her son and all other Boholano OFWs and their families.
Meanwhile, before her child was to be repatriated, Solon again worked in the Middle East, but no longer in Kuwait, after she applied in a job fair during the provincial governmentâ€™s HEAT Caravan, a mobile service program, in Talibon also in 2011.
Finally in 2012, the DFA confirmed to the provincial OFW desk officer that a female Philippine Embassy secretary in Kuwait was accompanying the child aboard the Kuwaiti Airways to Manila.
The governor then instructed Real to assist Solonâ€™s mother, who was to fly to Manila to meet her grandson at the airport and fetch him home to Bohol.
Real recalled that the governor appearedÂ not completely happy over the arrival of the child because his mother was at that time already working in a new Middle East destination.
But Solon was happy upon learning of his childâ€™s arrival to the care of her parents.
Also that time, the child was yet to be baptized. From the Middle East, Solon had even called the governor if he could be the godfather of her baby boy.Â (Ven rebo Arigo)