Alarmed by reports of kidnapping of Chinese nationals, the Federation of Filipino Chinese Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Inc. (FFCCCII) has urged the government to improve the peace and order situation stating this would affect investors’ interest in the country.
FFCCCII President Dr. Henry Lim Bon Liong made this appeal in statement Thursday, Sept. 15, during the Senate committee hearing on public order and dangerous drugs chaired by Senator Ronald dela Rosa.
“We request our government to continue to improve the peace and order situation in our country to attract more tourists and foreign investments. We want our economy to continue its growth and counteract the negative effects of the global pandemic and the war between Russia and Ukraine,” Lim said.
“We also espouse the upholding of the rule of law and strengthening of the criminal justice system in the Philippines, so that criminals are kept off the streets, violence is nonexistent and the economy is given the chance to flourish,” he added.
Lim said that FFCCCII, which is composed of 170 Filipino-Chinese chambers and business organizations, has also received reports of increased kidnappings and other crimes involving Chinese nationals and Filipinos of Chinese descent recently.
According to Lim, it has come to their attention various videos circulating in social media and messaging applications purporting to show abductions and torture of Chinese nationals. There were also reports of people, including children, who were kidnapped and killed for their organs.
After receiving those reports, Lim said the federation conducted consultations with different groups of the Filipino Chinese community and relevant stakeholders, including local government units and law enforcement officers, to verify the veracity of these reports. But to their dismay, he said, “We could not confirm whether these reports are true.”
Nevertheless, he said, FFCCCII has proactively set up a hotline, where members of the community can request for assistance or report any incidents of crimes they witness. FFCCCII also offers assistance in any way they can.
Lim also requested members of the community not to spread unverified news or share unverified posts via social media and messaging applications, because these unverified information may cause “unnecessary panic and harm the international image of the Philippines as a tourism and investment destination.”
The FFCCCII and its members, he said, are always ready to assist the government and other stakeholders to maintain peace and order, to prevent crimes, for the sake of Philippine economic and social progress.