Fellow actor a big help
Optical Media Board (OMB) chairman Ronnie Ricketts is keeping mum on the issue involving a government official caught buying pirated DVDs, but he’s emphatic in his support of the appointment of a fellow actor as an OMB officer.
Ricketts refused to comment on the incident involving presidential political adviser Ronald Llamas, who was admonished by Malacañang after being photographed by chance buying bootlegged discs in Quezon City last month. “The matter is already in the hands of the President,” Ricketts told Inquirer Entertainment.
The OMB chief, however, was very vocal of his support to the appointment of actor Cesar Montano as a board member of the antipiracy group. Montano will be replacing violinist John Lesaca, whose term expired when the latter ran for councilor of Quezon City in 2010.
“Cesar is a colleague. I’m confident that he will be a big asset to the board. Sana ’wag lang kaming intrigahin,” Ricketts pointed out.
Montano has yet to receive his appointment papers from Malacañang, according to his talent manager Shirley Pizzaro, since the actor just arrived from a month-long vacation in the United States with his family.
Another appointee, Elmar Ingles, will represent the private sector in the OMB. He will replace Ma. Trinidad Puno Villareal.
Ricketts also updated the Inquirer on the massive antipiracy operations conducted at the St. Francis Mall in Mandaluyong, and the Makati Cinema Square on Feb. 1. “I’m very pleased that our Muslim brothers selling pirated materials chose to cooperate. They peacefully turned over their goods to us and dismantled their stalls.”
The operation in Makati required more work, Ricketts said. “We gave the tenants of MCS until the end of December 2011 as deadline to sell their wares, but they resisted,” Ricketts said, adding that this prompted his team to conduct a raid on Jan. 18 which yielded P20-million worth of illegal discs.
“After the raid, we sent letters to the mall administrator and stall owners to warn them not to have their stalls rented out to vendors of pirated discs. It’s good that they’ve complied,” said Ricketts.
He added that his group is meeting with vendors and stall owners at the Metrowalk Commercial Complex in Pasig City to ask them to help in the cleanup. “Our job is never easy. We need all the assistance we can get. The addition of two officers to the board means a lot.”