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ROUGH CUTS: The digital Kadayawan Week celebration

Who says the Kadayawan sa Dabaw celebration for this year is off? It’s still on – minus the usual festivities though.

The organizers however, have come up with a novel way of celebrating the annual fest. Yes, the many activities that usually are done during the Kadayawan Week will not anymore be seen live in front of every Davaoeno and visitor who will come to witness the various events.

But they have devised a scheme using modern technology to bring back the many memorable activities undertaken in the past years to the people who are expecting the same festive mode this year.

Calling it the Digital Kadayawan celebration Mayor Inday Sara Duterte-Carpio in her message during last Monday’s opening of the Kadayawan Week said that through digital platforms the various activities of the celebration in the past years will be re-lived on-line.

In doing so, she encouraged her constituents to take a serious look on how Kadayawan was celebrated during the previous years.

Indeed the raging CoViD 19 pandemic has changed a lot in society. Even in the ways we do homage to the more relevant events in the history of the city, the local government has to forego with the normal ways in order not to exacerbate the deadly health emergency situation.

But of course we have no qualm in supporting the so-called Digital Celebration scheme. We are certain that with the people in Davao City and those who desire to come to witness the annual Kadayawan fest being able instead to get a chance of seeing on digital form the way it was when the times were normal, they’d surely enjoy this year’s Kadayawan festivities that never were.

Again we join with the same fervor, the 2020 Kadayawan celebration even if this is being done with the aid of modern technology.
After all, the most important thing that we expect from such a grandiose event is that we are reminded to keep on tracing our past so that we will not lose on our way to the future.

To the organizers of this year’s fest we take our hat off you guys. The scheme is another manifestation of how innovative Davaoenos can become when certain situations call for it.                                                                    **************************
With the recent development in the on-going investigation on the multi-billion pesos fund anomaly at Philhealth, it is time the probers focus on the possible collusion of some officials of the government health insurance firm and the scheming executives of both government and private hospitals.

Yes, as the saying goes, it takes two to tango. So the perpetuation of the continuing heist of Philhealth’s fund could not have been done with only one player. That is, from the Philhealth’s rank, and that from the side of its accredited hospital partners.

Of late reports have surfaced that the health insurance agency of the government has released millions of pesos to private hospitals already facing fraud cases. There are 51 such medical institutions that, according to the initial Senate probe findings, are enjoying the “mana” from Philhealth. What is supposed to be cash advance to foot expenses of CoViD 19 patients are also reported used to complete building construction or pay for salaries and wages of hospital personnel.

Yet, these hospitals have pending cases of fraud against Philhealth! How come they still became recipients of Philhealth’s money mostly coming from members’ contribution and from government subsidy which also is derived from the taxes paid by the country’s citizens?

Frankly it is very difficult to understand how the proponent of the idea of granting hospitals advances was able to convince the agency’s policy-making body to adopt the so-called Interim Reimbursement Mechanism (IRM). Through the system the beneficiary hospitals will have ready funds to draw from to pay bills of patients chargeable against the government’s health insurance agency.

No matter how hard we tried to squeeze our brain, the answer that came to mind was only in the form of another question: “What’s in it for me…or us.”

And the same question clearly applies to the other players in the crime drama.
And if there are tell-tale signs of the prevalence of such connivance of officials of Philhealth on one side, and of executives of private or government hospitals on the other end, clearly these include such arrangement as the attending doctor would casually ask the patient if she/he would just agree to pay so much (or less) and sign in the specified form.

The patient who is too willing to do every order of the doctor if only to avoid paying so much for consultation or medicines, without knowing, suddenly becomes an unwilling link in the commission of the fraud.

The question now is whether the probe of the many bodies conducting such inquiry will result in the filing of appropriate cases to include plunder, and eventually conviction and incarceration of the erring persons.

It is our take that only when the conviction comes and the perpetrators put to jail will we believe that the government is really serious with its anti-corruption campaign. For now, the best the people can do is wait…and see.



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