Getting to know the 16 “expelled” Concerned Members of PFVI

0
1229

In a resolution approved and signed by the Management Committee of the Philippine Fiesta of Victoria Inc (PFVI) led by Ross Manuel, 16 Concerned Members of PFVI were “banned and prohibited from becoming members of the Association in any capacity whatsoever for a period of five (5) years.” The 16, all lifetime members of PFVI, have been declared non-paying members and therefore do not have the right “to be involved in the running of the Association, cannot vote and cannot seek to call Special General Meetings”. Moreover, they cannot be expelled or suspended because they are deemed non-members.

The Philippine Times chronicled the qualifications and contributions of the 16 Concerned Members. Get to know their backgrounds and their sentiments regarding the Management Committee and the supposed sale of a portion of the Laverton property.

 

Maina Walkley

Maina Walkley

Professional affiliation

  • Honorary Consul, April 1997-December 2003
  • Managing Director, Casa Marquez Pty Ltd, 1994-present

Community involvement

  • President, Philippine Sports Club of Melbourne Inc, 1989
  • Founder, Philippine Trade Centre Philippine Trade Centre, 2004-2006

Philippine Fiesta/PFVI contribution

  • Organised the Philippine Fiesta at Alberta Park as President of PSCM in 1989
  • Facilitated the acquisition of the Laverton property for PFVI under Bert dela Pena in 1993

“I am committed to the cause of the Concerned Members of PFVI to save the Fiesta property at Laverton, and to ensure that the necessary reforms are instituted in the organisation.”

 

Eddie AtacadorEddie Atacador

Community involvement

  • Founded and led pioneering Filipino groups such as the Filipino Tradesmen Association of Victoria and the Filipino Community Welfare Services of Victoria
  • Commissioner for Taking Declarations and Affidavits
  • Managing Editor, The Philippine Mabuhay, first Filipino newspaper in Victoria

 

Philippine Fiesta/PFVI contribution

  • Chairman, PFVI Inc, December 1994-March 1998
  • Organised fund-raising campaign for the initial deposit of $70,000 to finance purchase of Laverton property
  • Spearheaded the acquisition of the Philippine Community Centre in Laverton, 1995

“I urge all members, past and present, and the general community to partake in open, full and frank discussions regarding the Laverton property; to be involved in the decision-making process and to be concerned about the future of this most significant and valuable asset.”

 

Noel TolentinoNoel Tolentino

Professional affiliation

  • Proprietor, Direct Finance & Investments Pty Ltd

Community involvement

  • Officer and active member, Filipino Tradesman Association of Victoria, Federation of Filipino Association
  • Founding President, and later Chairman, Philippine Sports Club of Melbourne Inc

Philippine Fiesta/PFVI contribution

  • Founding member and officer of 1st Philippine Fiesta in Caribbean Garden, Scoresby, Victoria, 1982
  • Chairman, PFVI, 1990; Initiated the change for PFVI to run and organise the Philippine Fiesta, which maximised revenue of PFVI, netting $17,000 at that time

“I believe in the cause the Concerned Members of PFVI is fighting for. I am against the decision of Ross Manuel and his group to SELL part of Laverton Property without consultations with the members, and particularly the Beauty Quest candidates, their families, friends, supporters and sponsors.  The Philippine Fiesta of Victoria owes a great deal to all the participants of the Miss and Mrs Philippine Fiesta Beauty Quest who all worked so hard believing that their efforts are contributing towards building not dissipating the assets of PFVI for the good of the Filipino community.”

 

Billy VelascoBilly Velasco

Philippine Fiesta/PFVI contribution

  • Co-founder of PFVI with Francis Dizon when it was incorporated, 1988
  • Secretary and Assistant Treasurer, 1988-1993; Obtained ATO approval for PFVI to be a tax-exempt organisation in 1992
  • One of the visionaries behind the acquisition of the Laverton property for long-term future benefit of the Filipino/Australian community

“Manuel’s group had been in PFVI long enough. They said they are only volunteers but they don’t want to leave despite the three-year losses, mismanagement, and questionable financial dealings with ANZ Bank regarding the Laverton property of PFVI…There is nothing hidden that will not be revealed.”

 

Ocampo

 

Gerardo “Gerry” Ocampo

Community involvement

  • Served in various organisations such as FILTAV, FCWS, PFVI, church and business organizations, since 1977

Philippine Fiesta/PFVI contribution

  • Secretary to Elmer Ragel, 1996-1998
  • 1st Vice Chairman, 1998-2000
  • Director, 2008-2010; Negotiated, planned, and paid for the $250,000 ANZ loan
  • Published the 2000 Millennium Book
  • Participated in a Filipino group’s Moomba parade

“The Laverton site was borne out of the combined efforts and hard work of all members of our community. These leaders (expelled members) are trail blazers and pioneers of this organisation when we didn’t have anything to work for; when everything we do out of strong faith and belief in each other’s dreams and aspirations… We all deserve accountability, transparency, and utmost dedication from the leaders we elect to their positions.”

 

Ordona-cropAlex Ordoña

Professional affiliation

  • Owner/Manager, Ordex International Pty Ltd

Community involvement

  • Managing editor of Philippine Mabuhay, 1982

Philippine Fiesta/PFVI contribution

  • Director, 2008, 2010, 2012
  • Managed the Souvenir Program which increased circulation and income contribution to PFVI
  • Designed, developed, and implemented the Naming Rights Sponsorship Packages

 

“My heart bleeds because they (Ross Manuel and Management Committee) have escalated the problems by resorting to a confrontational rather than consultative approach. Whilst they awarded themselves with lifetime status in the PFVI Management Committee positions for their 10 years of ‘voluntary services’, their move to expel Lifetime Members is a misguided and an ineffective attempt to resolving the issues.”

 

SalunguitPhilip Salanguit

Professional affiliation

  • Capital Project Engineer/Deputy National Captial Works Manager, Sugar Australia

Philippine Fiesta/PFVI contribution

  • Volunteer, adviser, 1st Vice Chairperson, Secretary, 1998 onwards
  • Secured grants from Multicultural Commission
  • Led the 1999-2000 fund-raising team to pay the interest for mortgage of Laverton property
  • Presented the proposal to save Laverton, which eventually led to the sale of a portion at $320,000, which settled the $250,000 mortgage
  • Assisted in the compilation of the PFVI Constitution

“I am very much concerned about the substandard management of the PFVI by Ross Manuel. He has taken the Philippine Fiesta of Victoria from 2003 to a level that he (among other things) allowed the deterioration of the Laverton site, eroded the PFVI funds down to $50,000 from more than $110,000 in 2008, and completely ignored the due consultation, validation, approval process by members of PFVI in the selling and development of the Laverton site.”

 

Tony LugoTony Lugo

Professional affiliation

  •  Works at Department of Human Services

 

Philippine Fiesta/PFVI contribution

  • Public Relations Officer, 1994-1996; liaised with other socio-civic association in promoting cultural events relating to the fiesta
  • Led a successful fundraising campaign t o generate funds for the maintenance of the Community Hall

 

“My involvement in the petition against the PFVI Management Committee is borne out of a desire to protect and preserve the property in Laverton. This property is the only asset that can be identified as truly owned by the Filipino community.”

Roy carbungcoRoy Carbungco

Professional affiliation

  • Managing director, Taylor Purification Systems (Aust) Pty Ltd
  • Electrical tradesman, Philippines, US, New Zealand, Australia

Community involvement

  • President, re-elected three times, Pampangueño Club of Victoria Inc
  • President and founder, Emergency Relief Fund for Philippines
  • Former liaison officer, Philippine Consulate of Victoria
  • Adviser, Ilocano Association of Victoria Inc and others
  • Former President and founder, Kapitbahayan Filipino Neighbourhood Association Inc

Philippine Fiesta/PFVI contribution

  • Overall Coordinator, Beauty Quest and Grand Reunion

“You already know why they want myself and Remy to be expelled because of our protest against the disqualification of Ed Guevara and questioning the validity of the election and questioning the finances of the fiesta.”

 

Medardo (Bing) JARABAMedardo “Bing” Jaraba

Professional affiliation

  • Worked at TNT Transport Ford Broadmeadows and Holden Fisherman’s Bend Port Melbourne

Community involvement

  • President, Filipino Tradesmen’s Association of Victoria, 1979-1981
  • Committee involvement Filipino Community Welfare Services of Victoria, 1982
  • Founding President of Bataan Foundation of Australia
  • Founding member and officer of FCCVI

Philippine Fiesta/PFVI contribution

  • Member of Fundraising Committee to acquire the Laverton property, 1994

“Very much against the sale of Laverton property especially without consultations and inputs from the PFVI members. Ross Manuel and his group have not even done proper feasibility studies on whether their proposed Philippine Community Centre is viable or even sustainable.”

 

ellenphiltimesEllen Oftial

Professional affiliation

  • Accounts Officer, James Richardson Group P/L

Community involvement

  • Affiliated with the Philippine Consulate Melbourne and Toastmasters Melbourne

Philippine Fiesta/PFVI contribution

  • Secretary, 2002-2008; Active in planning, organising, and executing the overall blueprint of the annual fiesta
  • Assisted in the compilation of the PFVI Constitution in 2004-2005

“I would like transparency in the management and running of the PFVI especially the financial affairs of the association, ratification of the proposed amendment to the constitution limiting the term of office of the Chairman to only two terms and review of statement of purpose and objectives, and due consultations, validation, and observance of approval process by members of PFVI in the sale and development of the PFVI Laverton site.”

 

Hugo EspenidaHugo “Boy” Espenida

Community involvement

  • Committee member, Filipino Australian Friendship Society
  • Involved in the publication of The Philippine Mabuhay

Philippine Fiesta/PFVI contribution

  • Committee member involved in organising the first Philippine Fiesta, 1982

“Considering the contributions I have made to our community, I am very disappointed and saddened that the current committee has expelled me, and prevented me from any decision making.”

 

Rolly HernandezRoland  “Rolly” Hernandez

Professional affiliation

  • Print Coordinator, Visy Board

Community involvement

  • President, Philippine Sports Club of Melbourne Inc, 2003-2005
  • Chairman, Philippine Sports Club of Melbourne Inc, 2006-2009
  • President, Mulave Club of Makati

Philippine Fiesta/PFVI contribution

  • Involved in the first Philippine Fiesta in 1982

“I believe very strongly in transparency of management. Members and officers of organisations should be able to communicate openly without fear of being expelled or banned simply by asking questions relevant to how things are being managed in the organisation. Ross Manuel and his group have failed to show good leadership in the running of PFVI.”

 

Elmer RagelElmer Ragel

Professional affiliation

  • Worked with Repco Ringers, Rockwell International, and the Ammunitions Factory

Community involvement

  • President, Filipino Tradesmen’s Association of Victoria, 1982-1983

Philippine Fiesta/PFVI contribution

  • Founding member and officer of Philippine Fiesta at Caribbean Gardens, 1982
  • Member, Working Committee to acquire Laverton Property, 1994
  • Chairman, PFVI, 1998-2001

“To expel and ban en masse the very people responsible for building up PFVI long before Ross Manuel even got involved in PFVI without justifiable reason and without exercising due and proper process according to the Association’s Act clearly shows that Ross Manuel has not developed nor acquired the qualities of a true leader. This explains why PFVI under him has deteriorated to such a shameful position now—financially, PFVI has been losing money; physically, the buildings have now deteriorated to a condemnable state; and morally, PFVI has lost its integrity as an association.”

 

Remy RaquelRemigio “Remy” Raquel

Professional affiliation

  • Machinist/Toolmaker for Toyota Motors Corp., Diecraft (Tupperware )Aust., Holden Motors Corp., Schiavello group of Co., Anthony Innovations P/L, Super Alloy Technology, Dolphins Products P/L

Community involvement

  • Officer, Philippine-Australian Ballroom Dance Club of Victoria

Philippine Fiesta/PFVI contribution

  • Supporter, contributor, volunteer, PFVI
  • Officer/Director, PFVI, 2010-2012

“Gathering my friends as volunteers and to help me in setting up stage during Fiesta preparations, and even staying late at night, and this had happened from Laverton to the Showground sites. They themselves can attest to this.   These are only a few things I remember, and yet, they tag me as one of those ‘panggulos’? Where is their conscience?”

 

Francis DizonFrancis Dizon

Professional affiliation

  • Owner/Proprietor, ABRITT international Cargo Forwarders and Financial Services ABRITT international Cargo Forwarders and Financial Services

Community involvement

  • Founder, Filipinos for Justice and Peace
  • Former President, Pampangueño Club of Victoria
  • Former member, Asian Resource Council in Victoria

Philippine Fiesta/PFVI contribution

  • Chairman, PFVI, 1986-1987
  • Director, PFVI, 1987-2004
  • Overall coordinator, PFVI, 1986-1994; Led the re-invention of the Fiesta by incorporation and provision of purpose and intent

“As we migrate and resettle in search of greener pastures, our community remains a microcosm. Both positive and negative subcultures are baggages we take with us. I urge each and everyone to set aside whatever holds us back and respond to this urgent call of duty as responsible members of our community.”

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here