Netizens flood lawmakers, use #PDAFKalampag hashtag
MANILA, Philippines - A flood may soon inundate the country's lawmakers as a growing wave of anger against the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) gathers strength online and offline.
On Saturday, August 17, an anti-pork barrel event invitation posted on social networking site Facebook went viral in a span of a few hours with over 5,600 participants as of this posting.
The event, dubbed the Million People March to Luneta, aims to gather anti-pork barrel advocates and "ordinary taxpayers" who want the government to scrap the PDAF and conduct an independent investigation.
In the buildup to the event, some netizens have started an online campaign called the #PDAFKalampag movement. Lawyer Ana Tan-Santos, who goes by the Twitter handle @mrsunlawyer, launched the campaign because she was "fed up" with the status quo.
"We have launched on Twitter a movement called #PDAFKalampag where we will choose a lawmaker/government agency a day to flood with calls or tweets to let them know how the citizenry truly feels about our tax money being stolen. Today we will contact Senator Franklin Drilon," Tan-Santos posted on her personal Facebook account.
"If you have a Twitter account, please tweet Senator Franklin Drilon (@frankahan) and let him know how you feel about the PDAF Scam."
Tan-Santos disclosed to Rappler that while they are concentrating their efforts on Drilon today, they will be sending messages to other lawmakers on Twitter in the coming days.
"We need to flood lawmakers and let them know we are angry. [We demand] an impartial investigation carried out, where all those responsible are identified and held accountable," Tan-Santos said. "To let the powers that be know we will not be silent while institutionalized looting goes on."
Twitter users responded with clear messages or humorous memes to show their support for the anti-corruption campaign.
Drilon later addressed the deluge of #PDAFKalampag tweets via his personal Twitter account, even responding to some netizens.
@jeanenriquez I was for PDAF abolition from d very start. been suggesting to limit its use,put stricter rules if it can't be fully abolished— Franklin Drilon (@frankahan) August 19, 2013
I urge COA,Ombudsman, & DOJ to coordinate closely in resolving the case & formulating actions including filing of charges to those involved.— Franklin Drilon (@frankahan) August 19, 2013
Tan-Santos believes the time to act is critical as public clamor for change is reaching its peak.
"We do this because we are afraid that if we do not, this will be swept under the rug and the whole thing will just repeat itself ad nauseam," Tan-Santos said. "Nakakasawa na." --Rappler.com