Pinoys in HK jails get Christmas cheer


Posted at Dec 10 2009 12:59 PM | Updated as of Dec 10 2009 08:59 PM

FilCom entertainers and Consular officials at the Chi Sun prison in Hong Kong/Photo courtesy of the Philippine Consulate General in Hong Kong

MANILA, Philippines – Twenty-five Filipinos detained in two of Hong Kong’s prisons received Christmas cheer from fellow Pinoys.

In a press statement sent to from the Philippine Consulate General in Hong Kong, it stated that six entertainers from the Filipino community there visited incarcerated kababayans at the correctional institutions of Chi Sun and Chi Ma Wan and performed a one-hour musical program for them.

The visit was part of the Pamaskong Handog that the Philippine Consulate General organizes every year for all Filipinos detained in the territory.

The six entertainers were live-band musicians Nicolas “Nicky” Flores, Ferdinand Gallano, Victor Salinas and Rodolfo Angeles and Pinoy Tayo Saan Man (PTS) radio program hosts Federico “Tita Kerry” Paragas and Michael “Kuya Mike” Vincent.

The two one-hour musical programs began with heartrending songs such as “May Bukas Pa” and “Pasko Na Sinta Ko”, and ended with a medley of joyful Christmas tunes that the performers and the audience together sang.

In between song numbers were funny poem and spiels of Tita Kerry and Kuya Mike. The duo’s radio program is popular among Filipino detainees in Hong Kong.

Songs, messages and prayers were also offered to the Pinoy detainees by visiting consular officials.

The Pamaskong Handog has been held for the past seven years during the first two weeks of December.

Aside from the musical programs at Chi Sun and Chi Ma Wan prisons, Consulate officials also visited each of the 15 Hong Kong prisons where Filipinos are present to give practical gifts such as towels, lotions, pens and reading materials.

As of October of this year, there are 129 Filipinos serving sentences or under remand in the territory. Of the total, 105 are females and 24 males. The Consulate said that the 102 kababayans convicted by Hong Kong courts, 72 are serving sentences of less than two years while 29 of those serving sentences were convicted of immigration offences, and 14 are in jail for theft.

Meanwhile, a Christmas Eve Mass will be celebrated by Fr. Emil Lim of the Chaplaincy for Filipinos at the Harcourt Garden in Admiralty at 10 p.m. on December 24. The mass will be broadcast live on radio.