Gov't Asked to Protect Legit Performing Artists

Article excerpt

About 400 concerned Filipino artists called on the government to protect the legitimate performing artists from the effects of a deep division between strong forces in the industry and the government.

The Filipino League of Artists and Guardians (FLAG) led by its president Mercy Posada held a rally at the Department of Labor and Employment (DoLE) in Manila to voice their concern over the "war" between industry players and sought the protection of the DoLE secretary and TESDA director general.

Posada claimed the word war can lead to the disintegration of an industry that creates employment to about 100,000 Filipinos. They also expressed fears on reports that foreign nationals now have control over the industry even at the Philippine side.

"The government should make sure that these reports of foreign crime syndicates having penetrated the Philippine side of the industry are not true," the FLAG leader said, adding that this means big trouble to the OPAs entering abroad.

She asked the government to step in making sure that crime syndicates have not penetrated the industry using dummies, "It is time an inventory and background check of recruitment agencies are done."

The influence of crime syndicates in this P30 billion industry became suspect when TESDA was hit by a well funded vilification campaign that drew concern from employes of the agency.

TESDA director general Dante Liban was subject of all forms of black propaganda, including several one-page paid advertisements that cost about P160,000 each. Daily mass actions and rallies are continuing making TESDA employes wonder who is financing the campaign against Liban. …