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Filipino comedian Vice Ganda during his US concert on July 2, 2022.

PHOTO BY ARCHIVE


Vice Ganda vs cancel culture: What Filipinos in UAE say

Is Vice Ganda the latest celebrity to be hit by cancel culture? News about the comedian’s upcoming concerts in the UAE has been met by mostly negative comments by netizens.

The comments were in response to an Expatmedia.net poll asking residents if they will watch Vice Ganda’s Fully Vice-cinated Concert Tour at Dubai’s Coca Cola Arena on August 5 and at Etihad Arena on August 7.

“No… I don’t want to support a bully who rakes money by mocking other people. He’s becoming an idea that it is okay to humiliate others for fun and entertainment,” commented a netizen called Bilin ni Senyora.

Zac Calum and Janette Almoro echoed sentiments by many that going to Vice Ganda’s concerts is just a “waste of time and money”. Jamila Sinlao said she won’t watch the concerts even if she gets free tickets.

Be Lle said she is boycotting Vice Ganda’s concerts in the UAE over his political views against Philippine President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., who won by a landslide in the May elections. “Big no! Before, I loved Vice Ganda, however, during the [election] campaign period I didn’t like him anymore,” she said.

Speculations are rife that the comedian’s anti-Marcos sentiments angered many supporters in the UAE, leading to low ticket sales that forced Vice Ganda’s camp to postpone the concerts.

Dubai resident Dexter Modesto said in Filipino, “There are many BBM (Bongbong Marcos) supporters in the UAE. Vice Ganda abused his fame to promote Kakampinks (supporters of then presidential candidate Leni Robredo), thinking his fans will follow his vote.”

Mildred Callano said it was “payback” time and that Vice Ganda should have “kept quiet during the campaign period. If he supports another candidate, he should have avoided a smear campaign against Marcos”.

Vice Ganda’s concerts in the UAE were originally scheduled in June but were moved to August, with the comedian saying it was postponed due to the death of UAE president Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan.

Sheikh Khalifa died on May 13, and although the country declared an official mourning period of 40 days, there was only a three-day mandatory suspension of work and live entertainment.

Celebrity columnist Cristy Fermin said she believes that Vice Ganda’s concerts in the UAE were postponed several times due to low ticket sales. Fermin and co-hosts of her YouTube channel Showbiz Now Na said in their video commentary that Vice Ganda could have just pleaded with supporters to buy more tickets instead of resorting to a “scapegoat”.

“If ever people bought tickets to his concert, it’s not enough to keep it going,” Fermin said in Filipino, adding that she feels sorry for the concert producer.

Vice Ganda’s concert organizer in Dubai, however, denied a slump in ticket sales. Speaking to Expatmedia.net, the organizer said there was “good response” in terms of ticket sales so far.

Filipinos in the UAE who said they are coming to watch Vice Ganda’s concerts said it was time to “move on” from the politics. “Embrace the true meaning of unity,” Dobie Kho commented in the Expatmedia.net poll.

Mitch Padar Quinoa said Vice Ganda’s net worth will not be affected even if Filipinos in the UAE “want to cancel him”. “Even if no one will buy his ticket, he is already rich, unlike OFWs who want to cancel him,” Quinoa said. ICA/Expat Media


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