Peque Gallaga: 'The enemy is our leaders'
MANILA, Philippines – In an open letter circulating around social media, Filipino veteran director Peque Gallaga criticized the government's relief efforts, calling the nation's leaders "impotent and incompetent."
Typhoon Yolanda (international name Haiyan) made landfall in the Philippines on November 8, leaving thousands dead and billions worth of destruction. As the dead lined the streets, survivors struggled to find food and water, leading to incidents of violence and looting.
In the letter, Gallaga blasted the President, his men, and the media, who, according to him "are more concerned with their showbiz image than confronting, accepting and dealing with the problem."
He went on to mention the innacuracy of information from the government, which contradicted international reports and first hand accounts from the victims.
"How much more do we need for us to realize that the enemy was not Yolanda? Yolanda was just a force of nature. The enemy is our leaders. And the leader of our leaders is the President," read the scathing letter.
'We help when we criticize'
Gallaga also sends his message to those who have tried to "stop [him] and others from stating the obvious."
Noting that he has given his part in the relief efforts, he said that all he can do is "rage against a man who made light of the tragedy."
"We can help and we can criticize. And at this point I am convinced that we do help when we criticize; if at one point we can, as Hamlet says, 'catch the conscience of the king.'"
"But I know that this is futile. This man is no king. He is not even a real representative. What can you expect from someone who never worked an honest day in his life. What could he possibly relate to?"
He ends on a note going out to anyone who tells him to stop criticizing the President, saying he will cut ties with them on social media, as well as "out in our leaderless streets."
The public joined Gallaga in raging against the government. Comments on the director's letter scattered around social media showed the public's equally infuriated sentiments on the relief efforts, with many praising Gallaga for speaking up.
(Thank you Direct Peque for putting in to words how most of us feel) Director Peque Gallaga open letter to PH govt. http://t.co/e4shYfGr0Y— Sunshine Dizon-Tan (@shinedizontan) November 15, 2013
Very well said direc. Now who has the balls to follow your lead? This is when true heroism surfaces. The others... http://t.co/aEuArAbYYf— jackie forster (@jackie_forster) November 14, 2013
Shared Peque Gallaga's post on FB. Sir, you have my respect! *slow clap*— Sarah Abanto (@sarahcharlina) November 14, 2013
I share this man's sentiments. Dir. Peque Gallaga, very well said. http://t.co/Wtb1uyfffe— Le Torre Fiel (@neiligtorrefiel) November 15, 2013
The following comments are screen grabbed from Chubibo: