Marcos Jr. prioritized car races over addressing the racing price hikes on oil, food, utilities and other commodities
Price hikes on oil, food and other basic needs race against each other in frequency and magnitude. But amid all this, where is the president Marcos Jr.? There in Singapore insouciantly enjoying his and his cousin House Speaker Martin Romualdez’s exclusive access to Ferrari’s Formula One garage during the Singapore Grand Prix. According to them, this is a break for them after attending the 10th Asian Conference. The nation’s questions is what has Marcos ever done to deserve a break especially since his regime has not provided any comprehensive solution to address the masses’ basic problems? If there is anyone deserving of a break, it is the people who needs respite from overwhelming price hikes.
In just over a year, Marcos Jr. went to 16 foreign trips already. Of course, it is the people’s money that is squandered for these trips. Even worse, for 2024, he pushes for a staggering P1.4 billion funds for these trips which his fellow bureaucrat capitalists gladly approved while they adamantly refused to suspend the excise tax on oil that could have alleviated the masses’ burdens and slowed oil price hikes. They are prepared to throw away billions of pesos for Marcos Jr.’s absurd junkets but despises addressing oil price hikes that have been happening for three consecutive months.
Also, the regime remains tightfisted when it comes to ayuda for the masses and has even moved to reduce budget allocations for it. Aside from withholding the P18.3 billion promised cash transfer from last year, budgets for emergency assistance is set to be reduced by P7.5 billion while the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) budget will be slashed by P5.1 billion.
Now, aggravating the nonstop price hikes on food and basic needs, an increase of 50 centavos per kilowatt hour (kWh) in electricity charges is set to be imposed. Meanwhile, workers’ wages remain dismal. The wage increase that the government brags about are mere change and inconsequential compared to the amount actually needed by an average Filipino family every day. In Bikol, one of the regions which will not receive any wage increase, daily salaries remain at P365 while the family living wage is at P1,127. The actual wages of Bikolanos are not even half of what they need.
The US-Marcos Jr. regime’s deliberate apathy towards the destitution and sufferings of the Filipino nation is a mark of a state that does not value the welfare and interests of its people. The masses must repudiate and struggle against this kind of completely rapacious and heartless government.