Friendly reminders to aliens in the Philippines
WHAT MATTERS MOST - Atty. Josephus B. Jimenez (The Freeman) - July 10, 2020 - 12:00am

Always remember that whatever your immigration status is, you are visitors in our sovereign country. Therefore, you need to respect our laws, our president, and our government. If you believe that this nation doesn’t live up to your expectations, nobody is forcing you to stay, you know what to do.

Filipinos who stay in your country and in any other countries are being treated with discrimination, contempt, and condescension. They suffer all sorts of injustice but they keep silent, they stay and accept the realities and they are not treated with enough respect, precisely because they are only visitors. The OFWs try their best to adhere to protocols and all sorts of laws, even if many of such norms are against our culture, faiths, and way of living. Our people try their best to adhere to what is expected of them. And, so it is only fair and just that expats, permanent residents from other countries who are here within our territories should behave and not act with some degree of arrogance.

In matters of employment, how many alien workers have not complied with our immigration and labor laws? Under Article 40 of the Labor Code, jobs here are open only to aliens if and when there is enough evidence that no Filipino is qualified, willing, and available to take on the job. And so, why are too many domestic jobs being taken by aliens, when millions of Filipinos are qualified, willing and available? DOLE and the Bureau of Immigration should look into this. I will talk to DOLE Secretary Bebot Bello and, if needed, the president himself, about this issue. I will also talk to the secretary of justice and the immigration commissioner.

There are many foreigners here who insult our political leaders and LGU officials and post in social media very disparaging comments against our government and our laws. Well, if you believe that you belong to a superior race, and you have a perfect government, then why are you staying here in a country that you despise so much? Remember, we are not a colony of your great nation anymore. We are not vassals or subjects to your royal and sovereign powers. We are a free and independent country. We do not exist to cater to your expectations. We writers do not exist to please you or humor you. We decide for ourselves what and how to write. If and when, you do not like it here anymore, then you know what to do.

If you are a foreigner and you violate our laws, you do not comply with labor standards, you commit unfair labor practice and bust our unions, then, our authorities shall bring you to court, our officials shall prosecute you if you commit a crime. Then if you are convicted, don’t complain of human rights violations if we put you in jail. Thousands of Filipinos are languishing in jail abroad and all our government can do is to appeal for clemency. If denied, we submit to the sovereignty of your justice system. So, by coming here, you are duty-bound to respect and uphold our legal system.

If you think that the Anti-Terror Law is hazardous to your liberty, you have no right to malign our president, our Congress, and our people, who are represented by our senators and congressmen. You are free to go to territories that tolerate your propensity to insult the host countries and undermine the authority of the host government. Our country doesn’t exist to cater to your own definition of freedom. There is no freedom to bite the hands that welcomed and sheltered you for so long.

OFW
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