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In the afternoon, PLM joined up with the rally of broad coalition to protest the burial of dictator Marcos at the Heroes’ Cemetery (Libingan Ng Mga Bayani) at the People’s Power Monument. Thousands of protestors, mostly students and young people, massed up at the PPM. PLM chairperson Sonny Melencio also spoke at this rally in the evening of the gathering.

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In the morning of November 30, PLM participated in the rally composed mainly of labor groups from different areas in Metro Manila. This is to commemorate the birthday of national historical hero and workers’ hero Andres Bonifacio. The rally at the Mehan Garden proceeded to Mendiola to link up with other workers’ groups. The media reported 5,000 rallyists in this grouping alone.

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Around 150 participants of the socialists gathering came. They represent leaders and organizers of PLM chapters in Metro Manila, Cavite and Bulakan, and selected guests from other political blocs. The whole day discussions centered on the topic “What Socialism Looks Like If A Socialist Government is in Place Today.” Discussion papers will be circulated soon.

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An educational conference for socialists in the Philippines, a response to a so-called “socialist president” in Malacanang, and today, a tribute to a real revolutionary socialist leader who united Cuba and socialists the world over in continuing and rebuilding socialism in the 21st century.

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November 21, 2016. These photos were sent by Edwin of PLM. Sorry for the grainy photos. This was part of an impromptu march yesterday, from the Balic-Balic church led by Fr. Eric Adoviso, to Welcome Rotunda, to protest the sneak burial of dictator Marcos and to remember the atrocities of martial law and the lack of justice for people until now.

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November 19, 2016. A link to a press coverage of the November 18 rally. Together with other of the older generation, Sonny Melencio was quoted extolling the youth participation in the rally. “We will not rest even though we’re passing the torch to the youth. We will accompany you in the struggle and in the coming struggles against the oppressive system. You shall overcome!”, Melencio added.

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November 18, 2016. Protest against the clandestine burial of the dictator Marcos at the People’s Power Monument. The protest later on atttacted mostly young people, those not even born during the martial law days. This is the product of the martial law generation passing on the education to their sons and daughters and by those who have become teachers and educators today. The young protestors are shouting the martial law generation’s slogans: “Makibaka, Huwag Matakot!”, “Marcos, Hitler, Diktador, Tuta!” They’re even singing Bayan Ko. These young people do not even belong to any radical organizations. They’re just students of history. History that cannot be covered up, as anyone can now use the social media to research the dark days of the dictatorship. The young people also sense history in the making — the climate of fear leading to martial law, more repressions and another dictatorship. The youth have taken up the cudgel and PLM has every reason to believe that the protests will continue.

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PLM was invited to be a reactor to the forum on Pivot to China with newly-appointed Ambassador to China Chito Sta. Romana on November 9. The forum was hosted by Focus on the Global South, Philippine Rural Reconstruction Movement, Tambuyog, and others. Reihana Melencio, PLM’s international officer and head of Transform Asia, made the presentation at the forum. A number of reactors from different fields (academy, NGOs, peace movement, etc) also made their presentations.

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100 days of Duterte administration. Workers and supporters launched a rally at Mendiola to protest the non-implementation of the anti-contractualization pronouncements of President Duterte. PLM also marked the event by supporting the rally and calling for the reversal of the neo-liberal policies of the government and the implementation of all promised reforms.

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These packed goods prepared by PLM ( Partido Lakas ng Masa ) to be donated to fire victims of Brgy.546,Sampaloc Mla.

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PLM supports the struggle of the Philcoa vendors, members of MMVA-Sanlakas, whose stalls were dismantled by the city government in collusion with Mercury Drug chain owners. The stalls were dismantled without due consultation with vendors who have been paying stall fees and permits to the city halls for years. The rally is just a start of the struggle to restore them to their vending areas or provide them with proper vending areas.

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August 6, 2016. Congrats to the Second Barangay Coordinators Assembly at OSHC Auditorium, Quezon City. Hosted by PLM. Participants from a number of barangays in Metro Manila, and parts of Bulacan and Southern Tagalog. PLM is gearing up for the October 31 barangay elections and consolidating its network.

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July 25, 2016. First Sona (State of the Nation Address) of President Duterte. We had the usual rally, but we’re allowed to come close to the Batasan. More information later.

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PLM rejoices over the tribunal ruling on the South China Sea and urges for continuation of bilateral and multilateral talks with China and other ASEAN countries

The ruling by the international arbitration tribunal that recognizes Philippine sovereignty over its exclusive economic zone and extended continental shelf in the West Philippine Sea is a political and moral victory for the Filipino people.

It gives the new government of Rodrigo Duterte an important leverage in its negotiations with China. It places the Philippines in a leadership position in the region, giving it the political authority to negotiate a peaceful resolution to the long-standing dispute over the Spratlys and other atolls and reefs in the West Philippine Sea in particular, and the South China Sea in general.

The PLM welcomes the Duterte government’s position of continuing with bilateral talks and negotiations with China despite calls by some to use the ruling to prepare for aggressive actions in the South China Sea with the assistance of the United States and other big foreign powers.

The Philippine government should be magnanimous with this victory by ensuring that the ruling is complied with by China and other countries through negotiations and talks, rather than through armed play which is detrimental to our country’s interest.

The key challenge for President Duterte is how to leverage this historic opportunity. This would require a framework based on:

— an unwavering commitment to de-escalate the tensions, war mongering, and related military interventions in the region in the name of protecting Philippine sovereignty;

— a reduction of militarization in the region, which includes reviewing all existing military agreements that contribute to the militarization, such as the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) with the United States government;

— the implementation of a genuinely independent foreign policy, distancing itself from the maneuvers of the major powers, especially of the United States, on which recent pronouncements by President Duterte criticizing the U.S. government’s ‘war on terror’ is a welcome indication in this regard; and

— the strengthening of bilateral talks with China and multilateral talks involving all other countries in the ASEAN region with ongoing claims at the South China Sea.

Partido Lakas ng Masa (PLM)
July 15, 2016

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BMP-PLM-Sanlakas All Leaders’ Assembly Against Contractualization and Other Issues, attended by 300 leaders. Newly-appointed undersecretary of the Department of Labor & Employment Labor Joel Maglungsod is the guest speaker. The discussions tackled the labor program thrusts of the Duterte administration, the character of the Duterte regime, the 10-point economic program of the government, the peace talks program and other issues.

jul 13 2016

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Challenges for President Duterte:
Stop the Killings! Prosecute the Generals and the
Top Henchmen of the Illegal Drug Trade!

In less than two weeks, more than a hundred alleged drug pushers and petty drug traffickers were killed in the war against drugs called by the Rody Duterte government.

Some of the killings were undertaken by the police after the arrests or surrender of alleged drug pushers and dealers. These killings were purportedly undertaken in self-defense by the police whose guns were grabbed by the suspects. More alleged drug lords and pushers were victims of ‘salvaging’ or extra-judicial killings undertaken by unknown groups or forces.

The killings are generally aimed at the drug traffickers in the community who constitute the lower rung of the drug syndicate in the country. The victims are mostly poor people who are forced by poverty to engage in petty drug dealing in the community.

The ‘terror effect’ intended against the drug syndicate is already terrorizing and disempowering a number of communities in the country. It is also nibbling away at the base of President Duterte’s popular support in these communities. We do not believe that this type of operation is a winning strategy to win the war against drugs.

The Duterte government should use all its forces to stop the killings of alleged drug pushers and petty drug ‘lords’ as this constitutes a grave violation of human rights and aggravates the peace and order situation in the country. The killings open up the floodgates of gangland execution that cannot be controlled by anyone, including the state agencies.

The government has to strike at the crown of the hydra-headed drugs syndicate instead at snipping away its tentacles at the community-level which is a bloody, messy strategy.

This is why we welcome President Duterte’s recent acts of publicly naming police generals, government officials, and top drug dealers as coddlers and henchmen of the drug syndicates. The President’s attempts to go after the generals and the top henchmen of the drugs trade demonstrates that he is committed to addressing the problem of criminality and social decay in the country.

We take note, however, that the poor people in the lower rung of the syndicates have already ended up killed and salvaged, while the top henchmen named by the President stay loose and have not been prosecuted. The President could start by prosecuting by full force of the law those who have been named as top drug lords and protectors.

As shown by the President’s exposé, we believe that the PNP has become a source of the drug problem in the country. The PNP needs to be cleaned up and transformed from being a protector of the big drug syndicate to a protector of the people.

In this regard, we call on the President to set up an independent inquiry into the role of the PNP in the drug trade, with the view of weeding out the hooligans from the good ones. It is crucial that the government mobilize and empower the communities and win their support and active participation in the campaign against drugs. The barangays and the community organizations with long record of service to the community can join hands to protect peace and order and the rights of every person in the community.

Lastly, if the President is intent on winning the war against drugs, the best strategy is not just about strengthening police actions or striking at the criminals in the streets. Poverty is at the very roots of the problem. To win the war against drugs, President Duterte should enhance his poverty eradication program by implementing such measures that do away with the neoliberal policies of the previous governments, provide jobs for all, stamp out contractualization, implement genuine agrarian reform, and others.

PartidoLakas ng Masa (PLM)
July 11, 2016

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May 31, 2016. PLM joins the big rally in front of Comelec demanding the proclamation of Ating Guro partylist.

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PLM joins the fight of Ating Guro Partylist

“I know you have won and I was surprised that you were not proclaimed”, the Chairman of the Philippine Commission on Elections (COMELEC) himself admitted to members of Ating Guro (Our Teachers) on May 23. Members of Ating Guro have been protesting outside the COMELEC offices in Manila since May 19 against electoral fraud that has denied them a seat in Congress in the recent May 9 national elections.

COMELEC announced Ating Guro obtained one seat in a draft report released at 10.24am on May 19. This was confirmed in the the national tally sheet released at 6.51pm the same day. However, less than 10 minutes later, when the official proclamation of electoral results was made at 7pm, Ating Guro’s seat had disappeared. Instead, an extra seat was proclaimed for an organization named Co-op NATCO, a capitalist business co-operative.

Ating Guro is the largest organization covering public school teachers in the Philippines. Their members are the electoral officers at the precinct level. If it’s petition against the COMELEC decision and to re-instate it’s seat in Congress is successful, it’s head Benjo Basas, a founding member of the Partido Lakas ng Masa-PLM, will represent the organisation in Congress.

The COMELEC en banc will be meeting again on May 31 to deliberate on Ating Guro’s complaint. Protests will continue, with a big mobilization called for on the day.

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I did the rounds of our pollwatchers in some areas in Metro Manila (Manila, Caloocan, and Taguig). In Manila, the counting still not over, and precincts haven’t transmitted the election results yet. In other areas, many were not able to vote because they couldn’t find their names on the list. The usual complaints are the defective machines and the large number of people who could not vote for a number of reasons (not in the list, machine malfunction, etc.).

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Groups belonging to BMP, Sanlakas, Ating Guro and PLM joined forces in the May Day rally in Metro Manila. Main theme was an end to labor contractualization and support to Left and progressive candidates and partylists. Speakers denounced the present administration and called for participation in the elections without illusion, ie, social liberation can only come from workers’ actions. They also clarified that contractualization can only be ended by ending capitalism and fighting for socialism.#

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Here are the campaign photos of the PLM candidates for national and local positions. They are all leaders of various people’s campaigns and issues, ranging from resistance to the neoliberal policies, contractualization, graft and corruption, human rights violations, non-implementation of agrarian reforms, neglect of OFWs, anti-women policies, and others. The local candidates are leaders of the anti-mining movement, anti-water privatization, and anti-local corruption in their own areas. PLM is building a movement of leaders that will replace the dynastic and corrupt politicians and their system of rule. Support all of them. Come out and vote on May 9, guard your votes, mobilize against cheating, and fight for our future!

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A thousand-strong provincial assembly of PLM and Sanlakas at Hiyas Convention Center in Malolos, Bulacan featured speakers from various sectors about their issues and demands to those running in the elections. PLM senatorial bets Lorna Kapunan, Levi Baligod, a rep of Toots Ople, and Dado Valeroso responded to the calls.

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A forum of local candidates in Manila, District 4, Manila was held on April 9 night time in front of the Holy Trinity Church in Balic-Balic, Sampaloc. It was organized by the local PPCRV and by Fr. Eric Adoviso. Council and Congress reps candidates in District 4 came. Sonny Melencio of PLM talked about the partylist election and called for votes to Sanlakas.

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Assembly at Bgy. Colgante, Apalit, Pampanga to launch the candidacy of Angie Bautista for councilor in Apalit. Sanlakas partylist reps Leody de Guzman and Aaron Pedrosa graced the event. PLM supports all these fighters for people’s rights who are now running in the elections.

apr 8 2016

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Contingents from Sanlakas, BMP and PLM held a picket this morning in front of the Philippine National Police (PNP) headquarters to condemn the brutal killings by PNP forces of the starving farmers in Kidapawan, Cotabato on April 1. The farmers and their families, numbering 6,000, had been barricading the roads while calling for the release of 15,000 sacks of rice to alleviate the effects of drought in their farmlands since last year. The government had promised the food relief since January but no relief came. The provincial governor and the Kidapawan mayor ordered the dispersal of the protestors at all cost. Three farmers died and scores were wounded.

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All in a day’s tour yesterday. With the Public Assistance Response Against Crime (PARC) training in Cainta, then off to the Malipay assembly in Bacoor, Cavite in the afternoon. Support for Sanlakas and PLM senatorial candidates snowballing.

mar 20 2016

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PLM Marikina Assembly in support of Sanlakas, Mayor Del de Guzman, and Vice-Mayor Fabian Cadiz. The two incumbent local officials graced the event, together with their councilors. Leody de Guzman, labor leader nominee of Sanlakas and Atty. Lorna Kapunan spoke at the event. A short march around the town plaza and near the Marikina bridge followed.

mar 19 2016

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Mabuhay, PLM Taguig for organizing a community assembly for our senatorial candidates and for Sanlakas. Heneral Dado Valeroso, representatives from Atty. Lorna Kapunan, and Leody de Guzman and Rasti Delizo from Sanlakas partylist came to speak at the assembly. Special thanks to Portia Ariesgado, Nessa, and all the PLM comrades in Taguig.

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PLM, together with Sanlakas and other anti-mining groups, held a picket today in front of the Dept. of Energy & Natural Resources building to protest the arrests and ongoing harassment of the anti-mining community leaders in Zambales. The community had set up street barricades to prevent the nickel mining operations but the police and the mining guards violently dispersed the protestors. The leader of the Zambales anti-mining community, Dr Ben Molina, a PLM councilor candidate in Zambales, led the picket today.

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Feb. 27. PLM/Sanlakas All Leaders Meeting at Barangay 14, Caloocan City. Presenting the PLM 7 senatorial candidates, the Sanlakas partylist, and the 3 local candidates running for councilors in Caloocan — Bgy. captain Alex Mangasar of Bgy 14, incumbent councilor Tino Bagus, and Bgy. captain Jaime Mataragnon. Speakers include Sonny Melencio of PLM and Manny Toribio of Sanlakas. Congrats to PLM organizer Raul Gibertas, KPML & Zoto, & Sanlakas comrades.

feb 27 2016

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During the PLM all-leaders meeting in Bgy. Palatiw, Pasig, Feb 25. Sanlakas reps Aaron Pedrosa and Oyette Zacate were there, together with running Pasig councilor Kiko Rustia. Bgy. Captain Bobot Guevarra, who’s also running for councilor, sent his apology. Pasig PLM leaders headed by Mario Cruz, Emma Garcia, and Ka Percy graced the event.

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Filing a petition at Comelec against undue media coverage of Pacquiao (who’s running for senator and scheduling a multi-media boxing fight during the campaign period). Walden with supporters and media interviews in fotos. Just click.

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The Alternative Seven (Pito Para sa Pagbabago) in the Senate. PLM chair Sonny Melencio raising their hands, with Sanlakas President Lidy Nacpil. From left to right: Hen. Dado Valeroso, Walden Bello, Neri Colmenares, myself, Lorna Kapunan, Toots Ople, Alan Montaño, Levi Baligod, and Lidy.12654237_898492543598996_4574282892167630947_n

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The Partido Lakas ng Masa (PLM), a registered national political party, fully supports General Dado Valeroso’s endeavor to seek truth, accountability, and justice for all the victims of the Mamasapano massacre, from the 44 SAF commandos, the MILF forces and the civilians killed during the failed operation.
It has been a year since and no justice has been served for all the victims, nor the masterminds and the perpetrators of the failed operation been held accountable for the dastardly deeds.
General Dado Valeroso, who is a PLM senatorial candidate in the coming May elections, tried to seek the truth when he came across an email of a taped conversation between a government official and a legislator in connection with the Mamasapano incident. This was recorded, according to the email sender, few days after the incident. The recording showed that there was a deliberate attempt to cover up the Mamasapano massacre so as not to affect the negotiations with the MILF.
We deplore the veiled threats made by Senate President Franklin Drilon against General Valeroso for the mere possession of the recording. Senator Drilon’s statement smacks of the Hello Garci scandal when former president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo tried to stop the playing of the Garci tapes.
We call on the Senate, specifically the inquiry committee headed by Senator Grace Poe, not to be cowed by Drilon’s statement, and include the recording to the inquiry’s perusal and study. For this to happen, the Senate committee should overrule the Senate President’s objection to the recording and secure the tape forthwith to aid its legal inquiry.
It seems to us that we are also not talking of one recording but probably a number of recordings between government officials and legislators trying to cover up or downplay the Mamasapano incident. We are also concerned that Senator Drilon referred to one related conversation between Senator Bongbong Marcos and Presidential Peace Adviser Teresita Deles as an old issue and a political gimmick. But if this was an old issue, it was an issue that was never aired, even by Drilon himself, even if it was purportedly about efforts to cover up the Mamasapano massacre.
We believe that the issue now goes beyond the recording. The issue is the right of people to know what our government officials are doing on national and crucial concerns such as the Mamasapano massacre. The issue is the continuing cover up, now under some legal goobledygooks, by higher ups in the government who want to hide the truth from us. The issue is the absence of justice to all the victims of the Mamasapano massacre after a year now.
The PLM and all the representatives of people’s organizations gathered here intend to build the broadest people’s united front against any attempt to hide the truth, abscond accountability, and obstruct justice on the Mamasapano massacre. We specifically admonish the administration’s hatchet man who are bent on persecuting individuals who are merely seeking a resolution to this dismal mess that had led to the loss of precious lives and had divided the nation for a year now.
We’re all here to show our solidarity and support to our long-term friend and comrade General Dado Valeroso, and to ensure that truth will finally prevail.

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PLM joins labor groups’ rally today. The PLM contingent assembled at Mehan Garden, Manila in the morning. A brief march to Mendiola followed where various labor groups under the Nagkaisa contingent were already assembled. The rally ended at around 12 noon.

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Various groups protesting APEC marched on the streets during the opening session of the APEC summit. The march was stopped by the police at Liwasang Bonifacio, near the Metropolitan Theater, which is around 6 kilometers to the summit site. There was a brief scuffle, but the rallyists soon regrouped and conducted a program where they were stopped. The marchers came from different coalitions – the SLAM APEC and the People’s Forum On APEC 2015. But the message is the same – Shutdown APEC. What’s the alternative? PLM here marches on the streets with one of the major slogans – Sagot sa Kahirapan, Sosyalismo (Solution to Poverty, Socialism)!

nov 18 2015

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Various civil society groups, including PLM, joined the People’s Forum on APEC 2015 at the Asian Center, UP Diliman. There were a number of speakers and panelists from different organizations in the Philippines, and guests from different countries (Mexico, Malaysia, India, Australia, and others). Ed Tadem, head of the Forum, gave the opening talks. Sonny Melencio of PLM also addressed the Forum on the topic of Alternatives.

nov 17 2015

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SLAM APEC (Solidarity of Labor and Movements Against APEC) held its relaunch in Marikina City, Metro Manila, today. SLAM APEC traces its history to the labor movement’s resistance against neoliberal globalization peddled by APEC during its summit in the Philippine in 1996. Today, 19 years after, with another APEC summit, labor groups and other sectors are protesting the latest schemes this capitalist gathering will heap upon the workers and the Filipino people. Brace ourselves for new attacks by big corporations and imperialist powers against the workers and people in the 21 members states of APEC. Panibagong pahirap na naman ito!

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The 2015 Manila Socialism Conference Against APEC and for People’s Alternatives will be held on November 15, Sunday, at Marikina City Quadrangle, from 8:30 am to 6:00 pm. The Conference coincides with the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit which is a gathering of all the heads of state of 21 APEC countries.

The Conference is an attempt to discuss among 300 representatives of various movements in the Philippines (labor, women, urban poor, peasants, youth and students) the disastrous effect of APEC and the various alternatives that the people can undertake to minimize or reverse its impact. The Conference is hosted by Partido Lakas ng Masa (PLM) and Transform Asia. There are also international delegates from Parti Socialis Malaysia and Socialist Alliance in Australia.

It is fitting that the Conference will be held in Marikina City as one of the major calls of the conference is a nationalist genuine industrialization that will protect and revive local industries in the country. A showcase will be the revival of the Marikina shoe industry which enjoys its heyday in the 1970s after collapsing in the 1980s and 1990s due to the ravages of neoliberal globalization.

On November 14, a day before the Manila Socialism Conference, there will also be a launch of SLAM APEC (Solidarity of Labor and Movements Against APEC) in the same venue after lunchtime. Then on November 17, there will be another Conference led by People’s Forum Against APEC which will involve a broad range of civil society groups. November 18 will be big people’s mobilization against APEC and neoliberal globalization. Everyone who’s been oppressed by APEC and its instrumentalities is invited to come to all these events.

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Manila, November 9 — The Anti-Contractualization Summit, participated in by 200 workers, mainly contractuals, in Metro Manila kicks off the campaign against the APEC Summit soon to be held in Manila from November 18-20. The anti-contractualization summit is sponsored by the Union Presidents Against Contractualization (UPAC), Solidarity of Workers Against Contractualization (SWAC), Sanlakas, and other groups. Sonny Melencio of PLM spoke at the Summit. The text of his speech is based on an article published below (APEC, Neoliberalism, and the Filipino Working Class). #

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APEC, Neoliberalism and the Filipino Workers
By Sonny Melencio

1. In 1996, the Asia-Pacific Cooperation (APEC) summit met in Manila during the administration of Fidel V. Ramos. Then US President Bill Clinton was one of the leaders of the countries gathered at APEC. The summit was held at Subic Freeport, Olongapo City.

2. There were a number of progressive groups which protested against APEC and the neoliberal globalization that it represented. Two alternative conferences were held – one was Slam APEC (Solidarity of Labor Movements Against APEC) which was held in an abandoned factory of Rubberworld in Novaliches, Quezon City. This was joined in by a number of unions under the Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino (BMP) and its allies in the labor movement and other sectors. The other one was the Manila People’s Forum participated in by NGOs and POs (people’s organizations) against APEC and its neoliberal agenda.

3. These two coalitions staged a long caravan which snaked its way from Manila to Olongapo City. It was blocked from entering the APEC Summit site in Subic.

4. The Ramos government’s propaganda on APEC and its agenda of ‘globalization’ focused on its role of creating more jobs, developing agriculture and industries, and therefore stimulating Philippine economy. The government boasted that foreign investments would hurriedly come so the Philippines can join the march towards globalization of the entire economy.

5. On November 18-21, 2015, the Philippines will host another APEC summit. The leaders of the 21 capitalist countries in Asia-Pacific, led by the US President Barack Obama, will meet in Manila. The countries or ‘economies’ belonging to APEC consist of the following: United States, Japan, Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, Australia, Brunei, Singapore, South Korea, Canada, New Zealand, China, Mexico, Chile, Vietnam, Peru, Russia, Papua New Guinea, Hong Kong, and Taiwan.

6. After 19 years since the first APEC summit in the Philippines, we can readily say that the promised heaven under APEC and ‘globalization’ failed to materialize. But more than this, we have to look at the role played by APEC in what happened after.

7. APEC impelled an economy based on an economic growth that favored only a small number of landed elite and capitalists in the country. It fosters exclusive growth that marks a growing gap between those who have access to wealth and resources those who have not. This is a type of economic growth that is possible only through increased exploitation of the working class and the wanton abuse of the country’s environment and natural wealth.

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General Dado Valeroso, as a young police officer, became one of the leaders in the military rebellion against the Marcos dictatorship. In the 1990s, he became disenchanted with the Cory Aquino government which pursued pro-U.S. policies and failed to live up with the Edsa Revolution’s promises. He founded the Young Officers Union (YOU) which launched several revolts against the first Aquino administration. This was the first time the military rebels reached out in talks with the CPP leaders under YOU’s proposed strategy of coup-cum revolution. Valeroso used the nom de guerre Carlos Maglalang during this period.

In 1992, Valeroso was arrested and spent several years in detention. Upon release, he went on to excel as a dedicated career officer in the Philippine National Police (PNP). He just retired recently, but he was one of the officers who was not involved in any case of human rights violations and corruption in the service. He is an MBA graduate of the Asian Institute of Management (AIM) and a member of PMA class 1982. Valeroso is an expert in national security and served as the country’s police attache in China.

Valeroso decided to run when he saw the Marcoses trying to make a comeback, from VP to presidency, through this elections. He said he’s running as senator to continue the ideals of the Edsa revolution and the idealism of young officers who long for genuine change in the country. His platform will bear the imprint of the YOU seminal program.#

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PLM is in full support of Walden Bello’s candidacy as senator. His running brings hope to the hopeless electoral situation today. Support Walden, bring down the elite-dominated, elite-controlled electoral system!

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PLM filed certificates of candidacy for Dado Valeroso, YOU founder, and Walden Bello, former Akbayan rep. PLM campaigns for their senatorial bid. Sanlakas Partylist, which registered yesterday, joined the filing in support of left/progressive candidates. Long live the alternative political force today!

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Congrats PLM-Kababaihan. After the rally in front of the LP headquarters in Cubao over the issue of trapo-instigated lewd shows in Laguna, the organisation has recruited more new women leaders for training. The second batch since the September training. Keep it up, mga kasama!

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[PLM-Kababaihan, together with allied groups BMP & Sanlakas, held a picket infront of the Liberal Party headquarters in Cubao, Quezon City, denouncing the hiring of women performers who were made to do lewd dances at the birthday bash of an LP trapo leader in Laguna. The event was attended by LP presidential candidate Mar Roxas and senatorial candidate Francis Tolentino. The LP trapo in Laguna said the lewd dances, mimicking sexual acts to male membership of the LP in the area, were normal in the party circles.]

Statement of PLM-Kababaihan on the Liberal Party’s bash in Laguna
where women performers were hired to do lewd dances for the trapos

We condemn, in the strongest possible terms the act of treating women as sex objects, and serving them as gifts by a Senatorial candidate of the ruling Liberal Party to a leading party stalwart in Laguna.
This blatant commodification of women was done in the presence of Mr. Tolentino himself, the Senatorial candidate. Mar Roxas, Liberal Party’s standard bearer or presidential candidate, who was there with the local LP leaders, did nothing to stop the lewd acts, which we deemed as an act of complicity to something that is in utter disregard of the principle of gender sensitivity and equality.
No amount of denial from Mr. Tolentino himself, and the self-serving condemnation from Malacanang Palace, could erase the offending and insulting damage inflicted on the dignity of our Filipino women.
We call on our women sisters to reject the Senatorial candidacy of Mr. Tolentino and we call on the Filipino masses to reject the arrogant display of traditional politics which is ruled by the patriarchal hegemony of the ruling elite.
End sexism and commodification of women!
End the rule of patriarchal capitalism!!!

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Congrats to PLM Taguig in assisting the assembly of the community organization in Napindan, Taguig. Other community organizations allied with PLM also extended solidarity. The community with more than 240 families are occupying government land, but don’t have titles to it; they also don’t have electricity and water. No politicians have visited them yet, perhaps during election time. We told them don’t believe in trapo promises. They have to strengthen their organizations to fight for their rights. Mabuhay, Ka Portia and Nessa and all comrades in Taguig and South Metro-Manila!

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PLM-Kababaihan training at OMI, Quezon City, August 29-30.
Preparing for more powerful women’s participation in leadership and
community campaigns.

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JULY 19,2015
PLM Marikina City convention at the City Hall Quadrangle. The convention elected new officers and discussed the campaign issues of PLM, including plans for the coming 2016 elections. More than 200 delegates attended, including a barangay captain and a number of kagawads from several barangays. The mayor and the vice mayor of Marikina City graced the event.

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Union Presidents Against Contractualization (UPAC) held a union assembly today (July 2) on Kentex strike, the coming APEC meeting in Manila, and the struggle against contractualization. Leody de Guzman of BMP and Sonny Melencio of PLM are main speakers.

july 2 2015

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Free college education campaign organized by Young PLM
(Partido Lakas ng Masa). Around 300 participants from more than 60 schools
in Metro Manila and Cavite. Thanks to the YPLM leaders and to the
PLM organizers who made this possible. A new young movement has arrived.
Watch out for this campaign!

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March 8 photos

Some photos on match to Mendiola to mark International Women’s Day and the call of women against US war on terror in Mindanao and the struggle for peace.

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CURRENT PROGRAM

 

The Asian Century: For a Socialist Alternative in the Region

November 28/Fri (DAY 1)

8.30-10.30 am: Registration

9.00-10.00 am: Press Briefing

9.30-10.00 am: Kontra Gapi, traditional drumming ceremony to welcome guests and participants

10.00-10.30 am: Teatro Pabrika (cultural group)

10.30-10.40 am: Welcome from UP Faculty/CSWCD representative

10-40-11.00 am: Opening Remarks: Our Socialist Legacy

Why an Asian socialism conference and why now? The opening remarks will provide some historical context to the main topics and issues to be discussed over the two-day long Conference.

Speaker: Reihana Mohideen
11.00-11.30 am: Opening Talk: South East Asia –The Failure of Neoliberalism and the Socialist Alternatives

Even within the framework of capitalist development, Southeast Asian countries do not match the industrialization that has taken off in the NICs or the Northeast Asian countries — Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, and China (although a special case). The most pernicious type of neoliberalism has occurred in this part of Asia, and among the Southeast Asian countries, the Philippines has remained a ‘basket case’. Resistance against neoliberalism is also growing in the region. Can the path towards development in Southeast Asia be integrated in the march towards 21st century socialism that has already broken out in Latin America?

Speaker: Sonny Melencio

11.30-12.00 pm: Open forum

12.00 – 1.00 pm: LUNCH

1.00-1.15 pm: Teatro Pabrika

1.15 -2.15 pm: The Neo-Liberal Asian Century — National Struggles and Socialist Perspectives

The objective of this session is to outline how the capitalist class has implemented its neoliberal agenda in different Asian countries, its impact on working people and the poor, the struggles against it and how the socialist movement has responded.

Panel of Speakers:

–       Nasir Hashim (Chair, Parti Sosialis Malaysia-PSM)

–       Vivin Sri Wahyuni (Chair, LMND (Youth), Partai Rakyat Demokratik (PRD) Indonesia)

-       Manarishi Dhital (Editor, Janadesh Weekly, United Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) (UCPN-Maoist)

–       Rasti Delizo

2.15-2.45 pm: Open Forum

2.45-3.30 pm: The Agrarian Question for the Asian Century — Issues and Socialist Strategies

The 26-year implementation of the existing Philippine agrarian reform law has rendered the program an orphaned and dying policy via its neglect of private land distribution, program reversals all over the country, acceleration of landlord resistance and counter-offensives, and, rampant revocations of beneficiaries’ titles. The main issue is that Philippine agrarian reform laws have always faced the basic limitation of “having to define its program within the context of existing property relations, that is, individual private ownership of land and its assets” and leaves to market forces the direction of agrarian reform under the present dispensation. A socialist agrarian reform is the only viable solution both from a historical perspective and based on the fundamental principles of political and economic empowerment. But there is no one single model of socialist agrarian reform; various forms have to be tried and tested based on the pooling of resources as mandated by the state but implemented at the local level. The preservation of the principles of smallholder farming and entrepreneurship are essential.

Panel of speakers:

–       Ed Tadem

–       Frank Pascual

–       Val Vibal

3.30-4.00 pm: Open Forum

4.00-4.15 pm: Merienda

4.15-5.00 pm: Capitalism and the Ecological Crisis — Fighting for Our Lives

This panel will discuss ‘disaster capitalism’ in the context of the Philippine government’s response to the Typhoon Yolanda disaster and how socialists are organizing in response to it. Speakers will describe how local barangays are organizing to protect their communities from climate-induced disasters. The session will also include a presentation on the key ideas behind the theory of ‘ecosocialism’ — an alternative anti-capitalist program to the ecological crisis created by the global capitalist system.

Panel of Speakers:

- Alex Bainbridge (National Co-Coordinator, Socialist Alliance, Australia)

- Dennis Mendiola

- Jimmy Ceguerra

 

5.00-5.30 pm: Open Forum

5.30-6.00 pm: Thailand: Current Political Situation and the Labor Movement

Today a military dictatorship is in control of the government of Thailand. This was a military crackdown engineered by sections of the Thai elite, in response to a ‘people’s power’ movement calling themselves the ‘Red Shirts’, which mobilized tens of thousands of urban and rural workers and the poor to advance the peoples demands for reform. Patchanee Kumnak is an activist who organized in the ‘red shirt’ movement. She will be speaking on the role of the labor movement in the ‘peoples power’ struggle and its’ response to the rule of the military dictatorship.

Speaker: Patchanee Kumnak (Turn Left, Thailand)

6.00-6.30 pm: Open Forum

November 29/Sat (DAY 2)

9.00-9.30am: Teatro Pabrika

9.30-9.45am: Solidarity greetings – Yelitza Ventura, Charge d’affaires, Embassy of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela

Feature Session: Role of the union movement in the struggle for socialism

This session includes a feature talk and panel presentation on the struggles of the trade union movement in South Africa and the Philippines against neoliberal governments. The session will focus on how trade unions can and are contributing to developing and building the socialist alternative. The session will also look at the similarity and differences in the struggles in the two countries and what lessons can be learned from the different struggles.

9.45-10.15am: Socialist Renewal in South Africa

Speaker: National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa

10.15-10.45 am: Open Forum

10.45-11.00 am: Coffee/Tea Break

11.00-11.45 am: The leading role of the trade unions? — Issues and Prospects
Panel of speakers:

- Leody de Guzman

- Roberto Dusaran

11.45-12.15 pm: Open Forum


12.15-1.15 pm: LUNCH

1.15-1.30 pm: Nepal – From ‘People Power’ and ‘Peoples War’ to Government

The left in Nepal have pursued different forms of struggle – from guerrilla warfare or ‘peoples war’, to mass mobilization in urban centres, to running in elections and winning government. Comrades Manarishi Dhital and Pradeep Gyawali were active participant in the different phases of the struggle. They will discuss how the left led the struggle, against the dictatorship of the monarchy, to winning government.

Panel of Speakers:

- Manarishi Dhital

- Pradeep Gyawali, Secretary, Communist Party of Nepal-United Marxist Leninist (UML)

1.30-2.00 pm: Open Forum

2.00-2.45 pm: Militarizing Asia — Women, Violence and War

A panel of speakers will discuss the current militarist policies/agreements of the US with governments in the region, as well as that of Japan and Australia. They will proceed to discuss the economic interests that underpin this political strategy, and describe how such neoliberalism and militarism are patriarchal and racist, building the case for socialist feminism.  Various forms of violence against women — rape, trafficking, prostitution — result from this nexus of structural ideologies. The speakers will also argue that social justice necessitates the synthesizing of both the politics of recognition for the culturally marginalized, and the struggle for redistribution in the face of Imperialism. The panellists will cap the presentation with narratives of resistances by the people, especially women and indigenous peoples.

Panel of Speakers:

- Jean Enriquez

- Ivanka Custodio

- Vivin Sriwahyuni


2.45-3.15 pm: Open Forum


3.15-3.45 pm: Merienda


3.45-4.45 pm: 21st Century Socialism — Towards a Socialist Asian Century

This session will present a broad overview of the socialist alternative from the perspective of the struggles and programs of different socialist parties and movements, in the context of and with special reference to the experience of the socialist governments in Latin America, such as Venezuela and Bolivia and their programs for a “21st Century Socialism”.

Panel of Speakers:

- Nasir Hashim

- Alex Bainbridge

- Francisco Nemenzo: “Out of the Doldrums: Revitalizing the Philippine Left”.

4.45-5.15 pm: Open Forum


5.15-5.45 pm: Closing Summary

Speaker: Reihana Mohideen

5.45-6.00 pm: Teatro Pabrika


November 30/Sun (DAY 3)

Morning: BONIFACIO DAY WORKERS’ RALLY

Evening: SOLIDARITY NIGHT

 

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To the comrades of the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (NUMSA),

The Partido Lakas ng Masa (PLM, Party of the Labouring Masses), a socialist political party in the Philippines, sends its strongest solidarity to the comrades and leaders of NUMSA who are now fighting for the renewal of militant trade unionism and socialism in South Africa.

NUMSA was recently expelled in the Congress of South African Trade Unions federation through the maneouverings of its central executive committee. The central executive committee of COSATU supports the neoliberal program of the African National Congress government, while NUMSA does not. NUMSA has consistently opposed the neoliberal policies of the ANC government and stood for an independent trade union federation.

From the NUMSA press statement itself, we gathered that the real reason for NUMSA’s expulsion has been its consistent rejection of the ANC governmental policies which harm the interests of the workers and the South African masses.

NUMSA’s expulsion itself was reached through a narrow margin –- 33 for, and 24 against. It is therefore logical for NUMSA to still continue the fight within COSATU in order to gain more support from other unions. But whatever the outcome of NUMSA’s fight against the neoliberals within COSATU, we are squarely behind NUMSA and the principles that it is fighting for.

Our party in the Philippines, PLM, has also been engaged in a relentless struggle against the neoliberal policies and corrupt practices of the present government which is also supported by some sections of the Left. We understand that the glitter of bureaucratic and parliamentary posts, plum projects and display of power have tempted others to reject revolutionary principles and liquidate the revolutionary organisations that they have been part of.

We are very fortunate to meet the worker leaders and activists of NUMSA during the International Left Symposium in August 2014. The symposium was a step forward in developing the unity of the left in Africa and in different countries. Today, we reiterate our invitation to NUMSA to address the Asian Socialism Conference that we are hosting on November 28-29 in Manila this year, together with other socialist parties and movements in Southeast Asia, Nepal, Sweden and Australia.

We also reiterate our solidarity to NUMSA and we will assist in every possible way to support its fight to the finish. The Conference itself is designed to strengthen the unity of the working class in order to defeat the neoliberal policies and neoliberal regimes that are wreaking havoc on the lives and livelihood of the workers and masses everywhere.

Comradely,
Sonny Melencio
Chairperson, PLM

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The Asian Socialism Conference will be held in Manila from November 28 to 29, 2014. The conference will be capped by the participation of guests and delegates to the November 30 rally in Manila to commemorate Bonifacio Day, a national hero who led the armed struggle in the revolution against Spain.

The socialism conferences have been a regular feature of PLM’s activities over the last decade and an important part of the party’s efforts to reach out to international left parties, organizations and movements and to learn from the political struggles in our region.

 

This year the theme will focus on the much trumpeted ‘Asian century’ and linked to this the plans for ASEAN integration, designed by the region’s rulers, as their ‘vision’ for the Asian Century.

The title of the Conference will be: “The Asian Century: For a Socialist Alternative in the Region”.Specific topics include:

 

  • · The implications of ASEAN integration for the working class and people’s movements
  • · Neoliberal economics: The same medicine in bigger doses
  • · Labor’s response to ASEAN integration
  • · The impact on agriculture and the future of agrarian reform
  • · Militarization and  ‘pivot’ strategy in Asia: Women, violence and war
  • · The People’s Alternative: 21st Century Socialism and Bayanihang Sosyalismo in the Philippines.

 

Participants in the region include the socialist party in Malaysia (PSM), communist parties in Nepal, socialist groups in Indonesia and other Asian countries. The conference also invited the National Union of Metal Workers of South Africa (NUMSA), the largest industrial trade union in South Africa, which has recently launched a discussion on renewing the struggle for socialism. The NUMSA representative will be a featured guest speaker on the socialist alternative and the struggle for socialist renewal in the African region.#

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CLIK HERE FOR MORE PHOTOS
The Philippines-Venezuela Solidarity Network (PhilVenSol), where Transform Asia and Partido Lakas ng Masa are both member organizations, organized a forum on Latin American and Caribbean Integration Issues on October 9. The forum featured Venezuelan leader Luis Brito Garcia as the main speaker. Following is the PhilVenSol statement:
PhilVenSol welcomes the representatives of the socialist government of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, Campañero Luis Brito Garcia and Campañera Yelitza Ventura. 

We established the solidarity network in the Philippines because we were inspired by the gains of the Bolivarian revolution and its people, under the leadership of then President Hugo Chavez, as they began to envision and build a new socialism: a socialism for the 21st century. In doing so Hugo Chavez and the Venezuelan people demonstrated that a 21st century socialist alternative was not only necessary, but possible. And not in some distant and unknown future, but in our time.
A key message of the revolution — to end poverty, the poor must be in power –has inspired the renewal of the struggle for a socialist alternative in Latin America and internationally. This is the path that the government of President Nicholas Maduro is also committed to, thus earning him the wrath of the United States government, which continues to seek the overthrow of the legitimate government of the Venezuelan people and to crush the Bolivarian revolution.
The Bolivarian revolution has also inspired a new model of regional integration: the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America, or ALBA. This is a model based on solidarity amongst people, not neoliberal competition — an economic, social and cultural solidarity. Given the moves towards an ASEAN integration, which is based on a neoliberal framework, ALBA provides a pro-people’s alternative of regional integration. 

We use this opportunity today to pledge our continuing solidarity with the Venezuelan peoples Bolivarian revolution and their government. 

Venceremos!

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The Asian Socialism Conference will be held in Manila from November 28 to 29, 2014. The conference will be capped by the participation of guests and delegates to the November 30 rally in Manila to commemorate Bonifacio Day, a national hero who led the armed struggle in the revolution against Spain.

The socialism conferences have been a regular feature of PLM’s activities over the last decade and an important part of the party’s efforts to reach out to international left parties, organizations and movements and to learn from the political struggles in our region.

 

This year the theme will focus on the much trumpeted ‘Asian century’ and linked to this the plans for ASEAN integration, designed by the region’s rulers, as their ‘vision’ for the Asian Century.

The title of the Conference will be: “The Asian Century: For a Socialist Alternative in the Region”.Specific topics include:

 

  • · The implications of ASEAN integration for the working class and people’s movements
  • · Neoliberal economics: The same medicine in bigger doses
  • · Labor’s response to ASEAN integration
  • · The impact on agriculture and the future of agrarian reform
  • · Militarization and  ‘pivot’ strategy in Asia: Women, violence and war
  • · The People’s Alternative: 21st Century Socialism and Bayanihang Sosyalismo in the Philippines.

 

Participants in the region include the socialist party in Malaysia (PSM), communist parties in Nepal, socialist groups in Indonesia and other Asian countries. The conference also invited the National Union of Metal Workers of South Africa (NUMSA), the largest industrial trade union in South Africa, which has recently launched a discussion on renewing the struggle for socialism. The NUMSA representative will be a featured guest speaker on the socialist alternative and the struggle for socialist renewal in the African region.#

 

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Women Fighting the System! For an End to Elite Rule!

On this March 8, International Women’s Day, women have very little to celebrate! The multiple-burdens that we bear have not eased. They are getting heavier and even unbearable for a majority of women.

The country is still reeling from the disaster of Typhoon Yolanda that left around 14 million victims and survivors. It’s a well-documented fact that women are some of the most vulnerable to being affected by climate-induced disasters – the loss of lives, the loss of livelihoods, the destruction and damage to infrastructure and services, as well as the many forms of sexual violence against women that tend to increase in the wake of disasters.

The Partido Lakas ng Masa-PLM initiated the People’s Caravan, which reached some of the devastated communities, even before the government agencies or relief organizations did. We witnessed how women and their communities had been affected by the typhoon. We also witnessed how slow and inadequate the government’s disaster response and rehabilitation efforts in the devastated areas have been.

Women are especially opposed to the program of disaster capitalism of the Aquino government, which will carve up the battered communities into the reconstruction and investment areas for big corporations and investors such as SM, the Pangilinan group of companies, Aboitizes and Ayalas. This is yet another example of the neoliberal framework of the government, which places corporate profits above the needs of the women, this time in the devastated communities.

Women have the most to lose from the government’s program of disaster capitalism. Therefore on this day, PLM-Kababaihan and other sisters are protesting in the devastated areas, demanding: livelihood funds for women; calamity and anti-poverty funds for women; subsidy for farmers and fisherfolk; automatic PhilHealth coverage for affected communities; housing subsidies; regular work, not cash for work, and more. We stand in solidarity with them as they fight for the basic needs of their devastated communities.

The neo-liberal program of this government, which has led to the privatization of essential infrastructure and services, such as power and health, hits women especially hard. The privatization of the power sector under the EPIRA (Electric Power Industry Reform Act), the monopoly control of the industry by MERALCO, resulting in record high electricity prices, has made modern, quality-of-supply, energy services, inaccessible to the poor and affects women’s daily lives in many practical ways. It increases the time women spend on household chores and undermines their income generating activities which, for millions of women, tend to be home-based. Power shortages can also affect women’s safety and mobility.

Therefore we support demands for the repeal of EPIRA, to dismantle the monopoly control of MERALCO and to put the power sector under public control, with special attention given to the energy needs of women. This would include significant subsidies to make quality household energy services free and affordable, as well as the development of decentralized renewable energy technologies and systems based on community control, with the consultation and participation of women.

With respect to women’s health, we call for the establishment of a modern, public reproductive health system, based on the provision of free and accessible reproductive health services and modern and scientific methods of contraception and reproductive health technologies, which meet international standards of best practice and provide women with a wide array of choices. The laws and regulations governing such a system must be based on the framework of a women’s right to choose, to control her body, her reproductive functions and health.

Finally, we understand that the root cause of the multiple burdens that oppress and exploit women, as workers, as unemployed housewives, as the urban and rural poor, as students, as professionals, as poor farmers and fisherfolk, is the system of elite rule, which defends an economic system based on the supremacy of private profits over peoples needs.

Various factions of the elite are now jostling among themselves in preparation for the 2016 Presidential elections. Roxas, Binay, Cayetano: the dynasties and the political representatives of the system of elite rule in this country and trapo politics. If these are the only choices, then women have already lost the 2016 elections, unless we manage to put forward a genuine alternative that challenges the political dynasties and trapo politics.

We note that there are progressive parties and individuals coming together to form a slate that challenges the political dynasties. PLM-Kababaihan thinks that it’s in the interest of women’s rights advocates and activists to actively support such an initiative and attempt to influence it to take up a strong women’s rights agenda. We believe that the campaign against political dynasties is a key issue in the campaign to advance the struggle for women’s rights and gender equity.

To significantly reduce and ultimately eradicate the multiple-burdens of exploitation and oppression faced by women, requires a massive redistribution of resources – of wealth and productive assets – to meet the needs of women. This is what is happening in countries such as Venezuela today, where the Bolivarian revolution towards socialism, has resulted in a massive redistribution of wealth towards the people, towards women. The gains for women in the last 15 years of the revolution include the provision of basic services, such as free health and education and the eradication of illiteracy, increasing income, with the minimum wage (now the highest in Latin America) increased by 2000% and reducing poverty by up to 60%. Under the Bolivarian Constitution women’s reproductive labor is recognized as productive labor and unemployed housewives are awarded 80% of the minimum wage. The Venezuelan government describes this as the path to 21st Century Socialism.

On this day, PLM-Kababaihan also stands in solidarity with this path and vision of socialism, a bayanihang (solidarity) socialism, in solidarity with our sisters in Latin America, Asia, the Middle East, Africa, across the South and North, standing up and fighting for their rights, against exploitation and oppression around the world.

 

CLICK HERE TO VIEW MORE PHOTOS

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Let Our People Live!
Save Lives, Redistribute Food, Stop the Economic and Environment Plunder!
Climate Justice Now!

The people are still reeling from the impact of possibly the biggest typhoon to strike the country. Death toll numbers are rising rapidly. There is massive devastation. Many are still trying to contact their relatives, friends and comrades, but communication systems are down, in the hardest hit areas. How should we, as activists and socialists, respond to the crisis?

Firstly, we have to support and take whatever measures are necessary to protect the people. This means all measures that bring the people immediate relief. In the hardest hit city of Tacloban, in south eastern Visayas, the people are already taking what food and relief supplies that they need from the malls. The media reports this as looting and the break-down of law and order.

But we say: let our people live. This is not “looting”. People are taking food, where they can get it, in order to survive. If there is no timely and organized support system from government, people just have to do it themselves and they should organize themselves to do it more effectively. Even some grocery owners understand the need for this. According to one report of a man who broke into a grocery store, “The owner said we can take the food, but not the dried goods. Our situation is so dismal. We have deaths in our family. We need to save our lives. Even money has no use here now”. Where possible, PLM will assist them to organize to take over food supplies and necessary relief goods.

Then there’s the issue of the government response. Our experience has been that it has always been too slow and inadequate. Any efforts are undermined by corruption. The exposure of the organized plunder by the political elite and sections of government, of development funds or “pork barrel” funds meant for the people, is a testimony to this. This outraged the country and brought almost half-a-million people out in to the streets in a massive show of protest on August 26 this year. While one plunderer has been arrested, the President has not responded decisively to clean up the system.

The public funds plundered by the elite should have been used for preventative measures to support the people weather these disasters: for infrastructure, including better sea walls and communication infrastructure; for early warning systems; for well-constructed and therefore safe public housing, to replace huts and shacks built out of dried leaves and cardboard; for health and education; for equipment and personnel for rapid emergency response, and the list is endless. But no, this was not the case, it was eaten up by the greed of the elite classes.

Unfortunately, we have no reason to believe that the government and the system will deliver and meet the needs of the people, this time round either. The self-interest of the elite, and their control of the government and the system that is designed to perpetuate their interests, through the plunder of the people’s assets and resources, renders the entire set-up inutile in the face of a disaster on this scale.

Then there are our international ‘allies’, such as the United States government, who have sent us their best wishes. But these so-called ‘allies’ are also responsible for the situation faced by our people. These typhoons are part of the climate crisis phenomenon faced by the world today. Super Typhoon Haiyan (referred to as Yolanda in the Philippines) was one of the most intense tropical cyclones at landfall on record when it struck the Philippines on Nov. 7. Its maximum sustained winds at landfall were pegged at 195 mph with gusts above 220 mph. Some meteorologists even proclaimed it to be the strongest tropical cyclone at landfall in recorded history. Haiyan’s strength and the duration of its Category 5 intensity — the storm remained at peak Category 5 intensity for an incredible 48 straight hours.

The still-increasing greenhouse gas emissions responsible for the climate crisis are disproportionately emitted by the rich and developed countries, from the US, Europe to Australia. For centuries, these rich, developed countries have polluted and plundered our societies, emitting too much greenhouse gases to satisfy their greed for profit. They have built countless destructive projects all over the world like polluting factories, coal-fired power plants, nuclear power plants and mega dams. They have also pushed for policies allowing extractive industries to practice wasteful and irresponsible extraction of the Earth’s minerals. They continue to wage environmentally destructive wars and equip war industries, for corporate profits. All of this has fast-tracked the devastation of the Earth’s ecological system and brought about unprecedented changes in the planet’s climate.

But these are the same rich countries whose political elite are ignoring climate change and the climate crisis. Australia has recently elected a government that denies the very existence of climate change and has refused to send even a junior Minister to the climate conference in Warsaw, Poland. The question of climate justice – for the rich countries to bear the burden of taking the necessary measures for stopping it and to pay reparations and compensate those in poorer countries who are suffering the consequences of it – is not entertained even in a token way.

The way the rich countries demand debt payments from us, we now demand the payment of their “climate debts”, for climate justice and for them to take every necessary measure to cut back their greenhouse gas emission in the shortest time possible.

These rich ‘friends’ and so-called ‘allies’ have preached to us about our courage and resilience. But as many here have pointed out, resilience is not just taking all the blows with a smiling face. Resilience is fighting back. To be truly resilient we need to organize, to fight back and to take matters in to our own hands, from the relief efforts on the ground to national government and to challenging and putting an end to the capitalist system. This is the only way to ensure that we are truly resilient.

Makibaka, huwag matakot! Fight for our lives, don’t be afraid!

November 10, 2013.

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Solidarity statement with the Venezuelan people on the death of

Compaňero President Hugo Chavez

 

Compañera Charge d’affaires Yelitza Ventura                                                                                                             March 6, 2013

República Bolivariana de Venezuela

Philippines.

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March 28,2013 –With the purpose of sharing and exchanging organisational skill and experiences to strengthen women’s movement and identifying the common agenda for international women movement and develop strategies, International Women Conference organised by Swedish left wing political party, Vansterns Internatioanl Forum and All Nepal Women Association (ANWA) with the theme of “Women and Politics Together “has been concluded in Kathmandu.

 

At the first day of the Conference, Women  rally in Kathmandu was started from Ratnapark  converged into inaugural session at National Academy. Hundreds of GEFONT affiliate women workers also participated in rally chanting the slogans – Long Live Women’s Unity !, Stop Violence Against Women  and so on in.

 

The conference was inaugurated by Chief Guest  CPN-UML Chairman  Cde. Jhalanath Khanal.

 

Delegates from Pakistan, Afghanistan, Philippines, Indonesia, Sweden and  Nepal  had participated in the conference .

 

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TRANSFORM ASIA APPEAL: We have been asked to support relief operations and set up feeding stations, starting in Marikina, one of the areas worst hit by the flooding in Metro Manila. We are launching a fund appeal aimed at out international friends and networks.


Donations can be sent to: Transform Asia Gender and Labor Institute

Account No. 304-2-304004562

Swift Code: MBTCPHMM

Metrobank, Anonas Branch Aurora Blvd., Project 4

Quezon City, Metro Manila, Philippines

Email: transform.asia1@gmail.com

Mobie No. +63(0)9088877702

 


For donations via PayPal, please click the “donate” button below

 

Reihana Mohideen
Chairperson, Transform Asia

 


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August 14, 2012

Malanday, Marikina Covered Court

 

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