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>One for Rommel Ynion


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By Pet Melliza/ The Beekeeper
A GDR taxi hit a broadcast reporter, throwing him down on the concrete road. The radioman’s pair of arms broke and had to be demobilized by plaster casts and metal braces for weeks, months even. His hospital bills shot up above P120,000 in just two days.
The taxi company, notwithstanding the super profits it has amassed through the years contributed not a single centavo to its victim. So did the broadcast station owned by a billionaire who feigned ignorance of his obligation to shoulder at least part of the hospitalization of his employee who met the accident in line of duty. 


The radioman had just exited from the back gate of the Iloilo Provincial Capitol on motorcycle when hit by a swerving GDR Taxi from behind.
Media colleagues rushed him to the nearest hospital, one known to be run by servants of god (whatever that means), which billed him P120,000 or so. He could not be discharged because of unpaid bills. He spent two days more and more than P4,000 more for the extended stay, which in fact, was illegal detention.
Provincial employee and columnist Nelson Robles made the initiative by contacting Rommel Ynion, interim president of the Iloilo Press Club (IPC), to seek help. Ynion footed one-half of the bills while the family executed a promissory note to shoulder the rest, and that freed the radioman from illegal detention.
There are three focal points in this drama: one, the super rich employer who’s good only in squeezing profits from employees but shirks from its obligation to invest for their treatment for work-related contingencies; two, the giant public carriage company which is also bent on raking super-profits but flees from its responsibility of answering for the damages caused by its reckless employees on third parties; and three, a medical institution purportedly run by holy men and women but is notorious for practices we thought only the devil is capable of doing, like rejecting emergency cases because the patients could not put up deposits, or illegally detaining patients to pressure families to cough up cash to pay the bills.
In that instant, the radioman was practically alone; only his media colleagues, especially, Mr. Ynion, and family were behind him because the very people who are supposed to rally behind him were unconcerned.
***
That reminds us of two friends, RT and NG, key anchors of a radio station who ran a litany of grievances on their former boss who happened to be also the boss of the injured broadcaster we mentioned above.

RT and NG called their ex-boss “heartless” and backed that up with reported incidents, one of which was the serious injuries sustained by an anchor who was knifed by a drunken fellow.
The anchor survived. He was lucky to have co-employees who rushed him to the hospital on the broadcast station’s prowl car. The news of him surviving stab wounds, however, was not good to the ears of the employer who loudly cursed as he reprimanded the driver and other employees for using the station’s prowl car to save the radioman who was gasping for dear life.
If curses could hurt, the employer could have been gasping its last, too, by now. Not only employees, past and present, but also, his own kins hiss its name very much the same way drivers of the taxi company (whose unit hit the radioman) do of their bosses.
I have taken rides on the taxi units of that company and the drivers are one in saying that not only are they bled exorbitant “boundaries” or rents; they are further bilked through the un-calibrated LPG gas dispenser at the company garage.
The company requires them to patronize only the LPG from its garage which is un-calibrated. Each driver gasses up 30 liters of LPG in the morning that would enable them to run within the 300-kilometer range, at one liter per 10 kilometers.  
At most, however, the supposedly 30 liters loaded in the tank could only range 240-250 kilometers, which means, or four to five liters short.
***
Manuel “Boy” Mejorada is a respected colleague and he would not question yours truly expressing deep appreciation for Rommel Ynion for coming to the succor of a media colleague in  his hour of need.
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