Robredo called out on use of song
After Philippine National Police officials called out Vice President Leni Robredo for using the PNP for her campaign propaganda, Department of Education (DepEd) officials on Thursday denounced her campaign groups for appropriating a tribute song that was meant for COVID-19 frontliners in a political video.
Worse, Robredo supporters did not pay nor ask permission—thus, violating the intellectual property rights of composer Arnie Mendaros, arranger Albert Tamayo and the DepEd—to use the song “Dakila Ka, Bayani Ka,” which was meant to be a tribute to the pandemic front-liners “who sacrificed their safety and bravely performed their duty amid the public health crisis,” said Education Undersecretary Alain Del Pascua.
Singers Martin Nievera, Michael V, Carol Banawa, TJ Monterde, Sassa Dagdag and other artists volunteered to take part in the original recording together with Education Secretary Leonor Briones.
“While we respect the political choice of the medical personnel featured in the video, we are appalled that the people behind the production of the said video did not even practice due diligence in securing permission first from the artists who graciously lent their time and talent for the song,” Del Pascua said.
The education department further underscored the lyrics of the song that said, “Anumang kulay nila / Anumang paniniwala / Nagkakaisa sa pagtulong sa kaligtasan ng iba (Whatever their color / Whatever their belief / We are united to help for the safety of others)” to stress nonpolitical and nonpartisan service.
“That message and recognition was sadly and unfortunately bastardized by this political rendition,” the DepEd said.
In a now-deleted Facebook post, people who claimed to be members of Nueva Ecija Doctors for Leni for Free performed “Dakila Ka, Bayani Ka” to push Robredo’s candidacy.
The five-minute video was allegedly produced by the groups Robredo People’s Council Hope and Beyond Nueva Ecija.
The DepEd said it would seek legal actions against the production team, reminding the people that nonpolitical materials must be kept away “from the messy side of the election campaign season.”