Overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) deplored on Saturday the alleged maltreatment suffered by a household staffer in the hands of Philippine Ambassador to Brazil Marichu Mauro.
“Any abuse to anyone is deplorable. Coming from a public official is despicable. Public officials are held at a higher standard, there is no excuse for this type of behavior at any level,” said Bong Aralar, who is now a resident of the United States.
He said it is good to know that the Philippine government is taking serious action and is now investigating the incident.
The video of Mauro maltreating her Filipina househelper first came out in a news program in Brazil GloboNews.
Mauro was immediately recalled by the Department of Foreign Affairs back to Manila while her Filipina service staff also arrived safely in her hometown in Cotabato.
OFWs based in different countries abroad said Mauro should also be given harsh punishment because she maltreated a fellow Filipina when she should be the one protecting Filipinos in a foreign country as an ambassador.
“Iniluklok siya sa kinalalagyan niya para siya ang mangunguna sa pagprotekta sa OFWs sa ibang bansa, yun pala siya ang nangunang magmaltrato sa kababayan niya (she was put to position to lead in protecting OFWs abroad, but she was the first one who maltreated a co-national),” said Pcorals Anniep who is based in Rome.
Romeo Boss Ramos, Beleth Serrano Aquino, and Annaliza Valenzona, who are all based in Italy, said the law must be fair and equal whether you are an ambassador or not, adding that this should also serve as a lesson and a warning to abusive government workers.
Rev. Fr. Andiy Egargo, who is working and serving the Filipino community in New York, said Mauro disrespected the dignity of her office.
“An ambassador is not only a government representative. He/she is supposed to represent everything good about his/her country. She is not a good representative of a Filipino/Filipina. Filipinos are gentle, hard worker, patient, and happy people. They are tasked not only as representatives of their country. Their role also includes fostering the well-being of his/her kababayan. Obviously, she is not concerned about her kababayan,” he said.
Meanwhile, OFW rights Advocate and former Rep. Aniceto Bertiz III said seeing the video of Mauro hitting her Filipina househelper pained him.
“The trauma of physical violence also leaves a permanent scar on the mental well-being of the victim. I commend our government for its prompt action to recall Ambassador Mauro and hold her accountable for the alleged maltreatment of her 51-year-old house helper. Let Ambassador Mauro face a proper trial and, if found guilty, be punished under our laws,” Bertiz said.
DFA Secretary Teddy Locsin Jr. said over Twitter that he has already received Presidential Directive No. 2020-196 directing the DFA to investigate the alleged abusive conduct of the ambassador.
He also assured that under his leadership, the DFA will not tolerate any action by any of its ranking officers or staff that goes against their primary mandate, which is the promotion and protection of the welfare of all overseas Filipinos.
Source: Philippines News Agency