DSWD, concerned citizens file child abuse complaint against Willing Willie

Dinky Soliman acting in her capacity as Department of Social Welfare secretary filed a child abuse complaint against celebrity Willie Revillame before the Quezon City prosecutor’s office. Father Robert Reyes, Froilan G. Grate, Frances Irene Bretana, and Noemi Lardizabal-Dado filed as co-complainants. The Department of Social Welfare and Development, and concerned citizens charged Wille Revillame with child abuse as defined under Republic Act 7610 (The Special Protection of Children Against Abuse, Exploitation, and Discrimination Act).

On 12 March 2011, the complainants allege that six year old Jan-Jan danced lewdly on television and Mr. Revillame’s “inconsiderate” comments according the complaint, showed deliberate intent to “portray the boy as a macho dancer to do things against his will in exchange for money.”

Revillame is the host of Willing Willie, a game show produced by Associated Broadcasting Company, and Wil Productions, Inc. It airs on ABC’c Channel 5. Advertisers for the show withdrew in light of the controversy forcing the show to go on hiatus.

Cocoy Dayao

Cocoy is the Chief Technology Officer of Lab Rats Technica, a Digital Consulting company that specialises in DevOps, iOS, and Web Apps, E-Commerce sites, Cybersecurity and Social Media consulting. He is a technology enthusiast, political junkie and social observer who enjoys a good cup of coffee, comic books, and tweets as @cocoy on twitter.

Cocoy is also the Managing Director and Editor-in-Chief of the ProPinoy Project.

Cocoy considers himself to be Liberal.

  • Cocoy

    The issue will most definitely will have to be decided in court. People in these pages, and elsewhere will say it was child abuse, and others say it wasn’t. And this is why in a civilized society, we have courts of law. No matter how one knows such courts of law in the Philippines are imperfect.

    We have to start from somewhere.

    Expert witnesses saying one way or another, if what transpired during Willing Willie’s 12 March 2011 show was in fact child abuse. And we do have law on what constitute Child Abuse, and based on those facts, the Courts will have to decide.

    GabbyD, I disagree with you that in any society that there should be a “standard” for abuse– whether it is emotional, or physical. Abuse no matter what degree it is ought to be unacceptable in a civilized society. Period. While that is ideal, it shouldn’t stop any society from striving hard for it.

    And yes Jeg, in a democratic society, anyone has the right to be a dick just as in a democratic society people have as much right to stop that dick. The knee jerk reaction of course is to say, don’t watch his show. Truth be told many of those who do not watch Willie’s show are the ones most incensed, and those who do watch Willing Willie religiously are his demographic. Taste and crass are human things that are difficult to regulate in the best of days, and this issue is married to taste and crass like a bee is to honey.

    Like ideas are best beaten by better ideas, I believe Taste and crass are best fought by more tasteful media, and civility.

    And so I disagree with Liza. This is not something that should be let go. Our society has an odd way of treating children. Some would say, we kill childhood. It is a philosophical question that runs deep in our society and Jan-Jan is just a symptom of it. So it needs to be resolved. Was there child abuse or not? And as I mentioned, only the Courts can decide, because there needs to be someone who says either way, and with finality what this Jan-Jan issue was.

    There are two issues at stake here. The first is whether or not what transpired on air was Child Abuse. The second is the quality of what media allows on our air.

    • GabbyD

      standard of abuse does not mean its ok to abuse.

      thats NOT THE POINT.

      what i meant was, what is the minimum condition (i.e. a standard) for something to be considered abuse.

      without it, HOW DO YOU KNOW something is abuse?

      is forcing your kid to go to school abuse? is a crying kid abuse?

      to be able to halt abuse, you have to be able to indentify it.

      some people say they can see it when they see it. HOW?

    • Jeg

      There is a creepy — albeit probably unintentionally so — dimension to this, Cocoy. This isnt about some stalemate wherein we let an impartial (sana) judge decide. This is about wanting someone imprisoned for being a dick. You are correct in saying that ideas are beaten by better ideas. They arent beaten by threats of fines and imprisonment. In saner times, we would have berated Willy for being an asshole and tried to turn public opinion against him by discussion and debate, but these are insane, political-correctness-gone-mad times. These times we accuse him of child abuse because it carries a prison sentence. They want Willy destroyed. Why? Because he’s a dick. That’s all.

  • liza edpao

    This is CRAZY & NONSENSE wasting time & money, instead of giving it to all POOR people in the Philippines. including Ms Soliman, shame on you, their r BIGGER problems in the Philippines than this. just go outside d street & look at d children that need your help.PLEASE WAKE UP EVERYONE… THIS IS A WAKE UP CALL..

  • GabbyD

    i agree with jeg. at most, he was insensitive to the child’s home situation. but thats it.

    i am of two hearts here. first, i’m sad that the kid and his family has to read all over that he’s being abused; all because of 10 min of dancing. even if he was abused, this circus aint helping.

    second, i’m glad coz we can finally test what “emotional abuse” means. i hope the courts will toss this, as the standard for emotional abuse has to be more stringent that what they are saying. also, if dancing for 10 min is abuse, then what about a few months of your parents being publicly flogged in public as child abusers?

  • Jeg

    Oh for the love of… That wasnt child abuse. That was Willy being a dick. Being a dick isnt illegal.

    • manuelbuencamino

      Willie was being a dick and the civil society types want to put a condom on him.