ESL teachers belie CIDG’s prostitution theory. Some 30 ESL (English as Second Language) teachers of the total 130 tutors of the Kame Hachi Corporation tutorial center located in Avenida West, Poblacion, Lingayen that was raided by the CIDG March 17 evening firmly belied CIDG-NCR reports that prostitution activities are prevalent in the alleged cybersex den. A day after the raid, the ESL tutors asked for Provincial Legal Officer Geraldine Baniqued’s (left) legal assistance on the issue. The Legal Officer immediately asked local media’s intervention and give the ESL teachers a chance to air their side and defend themselves. She said Provincial Employment Services Officer Alex Ferrer could attest to the legitimacy of Kame Hachi Corporation’s operation -- the tutorial center being a partner of the provincial government during special recruitment activities. The Integrated Bar of the Philippines – Pangasinan Chapter has expressed support to the ESL teachers who filed a suit to proper authorities to clear their integrity.
Lingayen -- “We are English teachers, not sex workers.”
This outburst of anger from a tearful online English teacher at the Kame Hachi Corporation who declared her team were online ESL (English as Second Language) teachers of the Kame Hachi Corporation.
Early this week, a group of about 20 CIDG police officers raided the ESL school located at Avenida West, Lingayen purportedly to verify reports that prostitution activities have been prevalent in what they called a cybersex den.
A search warrant for the violation of Expanded Anti-trafficking in Persons Act of 2012 was issued by the Regional Trial Court for the CIDG’s raid.
The raiders, however, found no solid evidence to back their prostitution theory.
Instead, they confiscated desktop and laptop computers, digital cameras, cellular phones and other documents and tools allegedly used for prostitution activities in the area.
Corporate owners of the ESL tutorial school Takayuki Umeda, ErlindaTandoc, Leonora Ceralde, Josephine Gille, Rafael Tandoc were likewise arrested and detained at the Camp Crame in Quezon City for further investigation.
After the raid, reports aired in the national television portrayed the ESL teachers as “sex workers.”
“Hindi kami gagawa ng isang bagay na alam namin na ikakasama namin, at alam ng mga magulang namin ang lahat ng ginagawa namin dito,” Shertina, one of the on-line teachers said. She lamented the dreadful experience they had in the hands of the CIDG officers during the raid.
“Why would we sacrifice our integrity as degree holders and licensed professionals?” Shertina, who’s already two years and 7 months tutor at the Corporation, added.
The traumatic experience has become a stigma as we fear of what those who saw the raid on TV might think about our job, Shertina said.
Zia, ESL teacher, on the other hand, asked why all CCTVs were immediately removed when the CIDG officers raided the whole building.
“Without CCTV recordings of the raid, how can we prove to people of the grave harassment the police officers did to us?” she said.
“Nilagay nila kami sa isang kwarto, dinuro-duro nila kami, tinignan mula ulo hanggang paa tapos sabay silang magtatawanan,” she said.
Marilou Austria, supervising staff of the tutorial center, said many of their ESL teachers are Mass Communication graduates and licensed professionals; and belied a report from the CIDG that minors are caught teaching in the tutorial center.
Local media in Pangasinan have already corrected an earlier report that a sex toy was confiscated in the manager’s room, verifying it as “a massage gadget.”
A day after the raid, some 30 of the total 130 teachers of the tutorial center asked for Provincial Legal Officer Geraldine Baniqued’s legal assistance.
Having heard the side of the ESL teachers, the Legal Officer immediately asked the local media to give the ESL teachers a chance to air their side and defend themselves, adding that Provincial Employment Services Officer Alex Ferrer could attest to the legitimacy of Kame Hachi Corporation’s operation.
“Is being beautiful a crime now?” Baniqued said when informed that the evidence gathered by the police raiders was the fact that most of the tutors were beautiful young professionals.
“Partner namin sila sa employment kasi nakiparticipate sila sa Jobs Fair at sinusunod din nila yung proseso ng recruitment at nagcomply naman sila sa minimum age and other rules ng employment,” PESO Ferrer said.
The Integrated Bar of the Philippines – Pangasinan Chapter has expressed support to the ESL teachers who are planning to file a suit against the team of police raiders to clear their integrity.