That the Abu Sayyaf kidnapped Prof. Octavio Dinampo together with the journalist Ces Drilon and her crew reflects badly on the bandits—but they are bandits, plain and simple. The initial response of the police to Dinampo’s fate reflects badly on the government too. We hope they can still listen to reason.
This was how editors from the Philippine Daily Inquirer summarized its reaction to the kidnapping of broadcast journalist Ces Drilon, her crew and guide. There are mixed reactions to the kidnapping of Ms. Ces Drilon, her crew and a guide but I believe the response of the police reflects the general response of government officials on a certain crisis–poor.
It reflects lack of knowledge and while they might insist there are certain protocols in time of emergency, there is none operational. In this case, there are a number of people who would like to be at the helm and be the gatekeeper of information. This just one time that you get national media coverage, why not maximize it?
They have also showed double standards with regard to the treatment of criminal situation in the Philippines. As reflected in the reaction of bloggers, if the kidnapped person is a virtual unknown, then it might have been a different story, for the rich Pinoy then another and so on.
Equality is never achieved in a country that keeps changing its mind on its laws more so on the leaders that it elects (the legitimacy of the current government leadership is still doubted up to now). The government should be leading the way in service standards and yet there is sustained frustration among its people and one can just shout in frustration while others could only write their rants in a number of platform (and pray that they do not get sued!).
There is great respect for the Filipino talent as knowledge or skilled workers but why is it that whenever we get together we just show the worst of our identity?
Now, if only the government–starting with the Philippine National Police–stick to their protocols and handle such situation with utmost professionalism then I think there can only be minimal mistake.