MHHS election tomorrow: Can ‘Tatay’ Avendano survive ‘Nanay’ Ching Colobong’s challenge?

Ching Colobong is seen here with several community leaders(third from right, sitting) with the United Filipino Canadian Associations in B.C (UFCABC) in 2015. Colobong henchman , Rey Fortaleza is second from the right (back row) besides former Deputy Consul Anthony Mandap and Consul General Neil Ferrer. UFCABCis currently embroiled in an internal struggle. (Photo: Philippine Asian Canadian News (PNT).)

Vancouver, B.C.

Board member Limbay Deza Lau lashes out at Avendano

By Ted Alcuitas

A current member of the board of directors of the beleaguered Multicultural Helping House Society(MHHS) has strongly criticized CEO and president Tomas ‘Tatay’ Avendano on the eve of tomorrow’s election.

Limbay Deza-Lau, a retired nurse and long-time board member fears for the MHHS existence if funders know about the current controversy.

Limbay Deza-Lau worries about the future of MHHS. (Facebook photo)

“If these problems get to our funders, we will lost (sic)everything including the building. It is owned by the government and they can give to other deserving Ethnic groups. Bangladesh is our partner, I don’t know if they have any idea what is going on,” she says in response to emailed questions by (

As to the anonymous group Concerned Friends of MHHS, she says she has ” no idea who it is. I was sick with Bronchopneumania when it came out. Although, I agree what’s mentioned there. A very small group, yet almost half of it belong to the same family. I’m wondering about the agenda.”

“From the beginning I have been looking up to Tatay and have been loyal to him. I was with him since the beginning, even before the 1st building was built. The Board Members at that time worked so hard to get the property. Everybody contributed to reach the amount of 125,000.00 $we need. Ric Asistio even got a 2nd mortgage in his house to meet the amount. We were paid after we were approved since we applied for a mortgage to build the 1st building. Tatay took the credit for all of these accomplishments. We did not get a thank you from him. Just credit to himself. At one point, he said he was quitting and I even said that if he do, I will quit too. This was during Bing Atienza Campbell time when the 2 of them wanted to be the Boss.
When the 2 nd building was built which was funded by the 3 levels of government, City, Provincial and Federal government we all work hard to get it. He took all the credit. Another thing is, he campaign openly to present political administration which is a no no. We are neutral. Unluckily Harper lost, and Christy Clark too.
Another thing, any of former staff that worked in MHHS left with a heavy heart for Tatay. You can asked (sic)them. Example Maria Javier, Irene Yatco and others.
Last 4 years He has been a figure head, not doing anything except of course for the caregivers. Mike Cayetano, with the help of Marius Alparaque are doing all the grants and connecting to other settlement services agencies in other provinces. 1.5years ago Marius and myself went to Ontario, Winnipeg, Edmonton and Calgary to connect to these agencies. MHHS paid for our air fare and I have to take charge for the expenses for food, accommodations and transportation.. Not even a thank you from him. During our board meeting, if I complain about things that I think is not right, you get an answer, it’s ok. We will just go on.
We are supposed to have the Foundation. What happened to that, we don’t know. Financial statements balance 00. Rent from the Respite Housing which is quite a bit, no record. Actually, I already expressed my desire to get out. I have spent more than 22 years of my time and money to the place, but when Tatay make his speech he never mention the help that we gave him. Just all I I I! ❤ So, what’s the point of continuing to be there?”
“We will see what happens tomorrow. I really don’t care anymore. If the bylaw and constitution will be followed, the other party have a chance, but if Tatay gets his way, Dynasty and his party will win. Maybe when that happens, you can say goodbye to MHHS and services given to newcomers for free.”

Will hang on till the end

“On retiring, Tatay Tom said “I will retire when I am dead but I cannot retire while I am still breathing. This (MHHS) is my twin, which I cannot live without,”Avendano told the  Philippine Canadian Inquirer in an interview on January 27, 2016.

Ching Colobong, alleged opposition leader

Ching Colobong, who Avendano believes is the woman behind the anonymous group Concerned Friends of MHHS has not responded to our emails.She however, posted a letter from Avendano on her Facebook page.

The letter is a long-delayed explanation and ‘apology’ from Avendano for his role in keeping Colobong from assuming office when she was elected in 2014.


Is Tatay Tom a shoo-in ?

MHHS has updated their website to include a list of qualified voters which shows 322. There is no indication as to the number of support each group will get but Avendano is not a new kid in the block. The wily 89-year old have been used to Philippine-style politics having been a Pasig City councillor for 12 years  before he came to Canada in 1982.

He survived 22 years at the helm of MHHS, so it would be a surprise if he loses tomorrow despite the concerted attacks from the anonymous group, Concerned Friends of MHHS.

Tom ‘Tatay’ Avendano is a seasoned politician in the Philippines and in Canada. Can he keep his seat tomorrow? (Philippine Canadian Inquirer photo)

Breaking: Is Tomas ‘Tatay’ Avendano on the way out?

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