From Migrante, rotten eggs for GMA on her birthday


April 4, 2009




Photos courtesy of Migrante International

4 April 2009
Reference: Gina Esguerra, Secretary General, 09058361412
Ailyn Abdula, Media Liaison, 09212708994

Migrants birthday presents on the 62nd day of Gloria Macapagal Arroyo

For the 62nd birthday of Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, Migrante International, the largest alliance of Filipino migrant organizations worldwide, gave rotten eggs as a symbol of their contempt for her labor export policy.

“No President has been as determined to sell our migrant workers as cheap commodities,” said Migrante Secretary General Gina Esguerra. “The rotten eggs signify how foul the stench of her corrupt government is and it has reached all 190 countries where OFWs are.”

The Migrante leader said that with the deepening financial and global crisis, government has done nothing for OFWs who have even become more vulnerable to exploitation and abuses. She went on to cite the new batch of retrenched workers from Taiwan, all 50 of them, who have the same complaints as the former batches of retrenched workers: non-payment of the unexpired portion of their contract and overcharging of placement fees.

“What happened to the much-touted ‘assistance teams’ that the Manila Economic and Cultural Office (MECO) has been boasting about? We have been receiving reports that these teams are nothing but spokespersons of companies and agencies to convince retrenched workers to accept even more exploitative conditions.”

Esguerra also reported that the number of cases of overcharging, trafficked workers and runaways are being documented daily by Migrante’s Middle East chapters.

“Government’s response to all these is to send a police attache, not a lawyer or an additional welfare officer who can truly help,” continued Esguerra. “We fear that this police attache is to sow fear especially because OFWs are increasingly becoming more vocal about their disgust over this regime.”

“Meanwhile, in Hongkong, domestic workers are up in arms not only against the racial slur of HK magazine columnist Chip Tsao but also against the Arroyo government whose ruthless marketing campaign to sell OFWs as the cheapest commodity around.”

Around the world, migrant workers are restive. Let these rotten eggs be a warning to Arroyo that this social volcano might soon erupt! ###

April 4, 2009

*“Good luck and good riddance!”*
*Youth groups hold “special” bday party for Arroyo*

On the eve of her birthday, youth groups led by Kabataang Pinoy today held a
“special” party for President Gloria Arroyo at the University of the
Philippines – Diliman.

Kabataang Pinoy said that their wish on Arroyo’s birthday is that she douses
all attempts at charter change. “This should be her last birthday as
president. On this occasion we have nothing more to say to her than ‘good
luck and good riddance!’” said Kabataang Pinoy spokesperson Alvin Peters.

Peters said that cha-cha moves by Arroyo’s allies in Congress are yet ways
to ensure her immunity from inevitable law suits after 2010.

The “birthday party” was complete with party hats marked with anti-chacha
slogans and parlor games such as “Pin the mole on Arroyo” and “Trip to
Jerusalem with a twist”. Young “guests” were also served “FG Mike de leche”
and they even sang a happy birthday song for the president.

“In a way, this event is a cause for celebration. This is Arroyo’s last year
in office, the youth are anticipating her stepping down. Change is bound to
happen. The youth want change to happen,” Peters said.

Kabataang Pinoy was joined by youth groups National Union of Students of the
Philippines, College Editors Guild of the Philippines, Student Christian
Movement, League of Filipino Students and Anakbayan.

Peters said that they will be trooping to the House of Representatives on
April 13, opening of sessions, to mark the youth’s opposition to charter
change. ###


Alvin Peters, 09206209362
Vencer Crisostomo, 09224290258