Fetalvero: Ready Leni

Noemi Fetalvero

SOCIAL media presents all kinds of challenges: Some serious, others quite ridiculous. Our president recently posed a challenge which initially was taken by Filipinos as one of the president’s jokes. Vice president Leni Robredo, the anti-drug czar? The offer came after the vice president made a comment—a tweak on the war on drugs.

Our vice president will need all the assistance from all fronts, including the Church and from ordinary citizens whose sincerity to end the drug menace will be put to the test. Like corruption, the war on drugs faces a crisis of conscience.

Committing to the truth has brought whistleblowers to jail if not a life of constant threat. Whatever happened to the Whistleblower Protection Bill 5715 that was intended to support prosecution of errant and corrupt officials? Its intention was to uphold the integrity in public service, safeguard national interest and encourage the disclosure of illicit dealings.

The bill provides: “The whistleblowers identity and disclosure should be kept absolutely confidential from the public until the court rules on disclosure of the crime and thus makes it public.”

“Whistleblowers are shielded from any reprisal and given government security for his own personal protection. Whistleblowers involved in the wrong doing are likewise immune from being charged for their actions and any disclosure made or documents submitted cannot be used as evidence against the whistleblower.”

Protection under House Bill 5715 could be challenging when there are scalawags among our law enforcers. Some whistleblowers could end up dead.

Tom Mueller, who authored the book “Crisis of Conscience” chronicled the serious repercussions faced by whistleblowers. He provided distinctions between “anonymous leakers” and authentic whistleblowers who buttress their claims with “professional gravitas” and “personal conviction.” A book review from one author, “It exposes and denounces the structural decay that plague many of our most powerful institutions putting democracy itself in danger.”

I believe “crisis of conscience” is a worldwide concern when fraud and misinformation seem to be the “order” of the day.

VP Robredo, I pray that you will be guided by the Holy Spirit and tackle all the challenges, difficulties and stumbling blocks that may come your way as co-chairperson to the inter-agency committee for the anti-drug campaign.