Relief Operations of Progressive Partylists:

Bayan Muna relief work in Montalban, Markina and Quezon City


Posted: October 6, 2009


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Photos courtesy of Bayan Muna
Barangay 432, Sampaloc, Manila


# 45 K-7 Street, Kamias, Quezon City
Telefax: 921-3473
Press Release – October 4, 2009

Progressive parties’ relief efforts are ongoing despite difficulties

(This is in reply to Mr. Ramon Tulfo’s On Target Column in the Inquirer query and various text messages falsely accusing progressive parties for not doing anything to bring relief to the victims of unprecedented floods brought by Typhoon Ondoy.)

Progressive parties under Makabayan, specifically Bayan Muna, Anakpawis, Gabriela, Kabataan, Migrante, Courage, Act Teachers and Katribu have been conducting relief, clean up and medical missions since Monday (September 28, 2009) to immediately help the victims of Typhoon Ondoy.

Officers, members and volunteers of our parties have devoted time, energies and our meager resources to gather, repack, distribute food, clothes and other donations to the most affected communities and families. We continue to call for donations and volunteers to gather support and extend aid and services to the typhoon victims.

Initial and partial reports show that our parties have been able to extend relief assistance to thousands of victims, specifically in:

1. Tumana, Malanday and Olandes in Marikina City;
2. Sampaloc, Malate, V. Mapa and Arlegui in Manila;
3. Bagong Silangan, Tatalon, Talayan, Pinyahan, D. Tubo, Pechayan, Old Capitol Site, San Vicente, Libis, Old Balara, Masaya, North Fairview, Nagkakaisang Nayon,and Sto. Domingo in Quezon City;
4. Bagong Silang in Caloocan City;
5. Manggahan-Floodway in Pasig City;
6. Binangonan, Montalban and San Mateo in Rizal;
7. Potrero in Malabon
8. RMT Compound in Muntinlupa City;

Our respective provincial and municipal chapters have also been conducting their own relief, clean up and medical missions.

If Mr. Ramon Tulfo and those who invent and circulate baseless text messages took the time to call the office of any of our representatives in Congress or any of our party offices, they would have at least been informed out that their insinuations or accusations are baseless.

The disinformation campaign became obvious and ridiculous with the text messages being circulated vilifying our parties for misappropriating our pork barrel.

Our parties have long been denied of pork barrel funds since June 2005 when we took the lead in seeking the resignation, impeachment or ouster of Mrs. Arroyo because of massive election fraud, plunder and human right violations.

Despite this, we endeavor to deliver services to our people to the best of our abilities.

Bayan Muna Rep. Satur C. Ocampo
Bayan Muna Rep. Teddy Casino
Bayan Muna Rep. Neri Colmenares
Anakpawis Rep. Rafael Mariano
Anakpawis Rep. Joel Maglunsod
Gabriela Rep. Liza Maza
Gabriela Rep. Luz Ilagan
Kabataan Rep. Raymond Palatino
Vincent Michael L. Borneo
Political Affairs Officer
(Media and Public Relations)
Office of Deputy Minority Leader
and BAYAN MUNA Rep. Satur C. Ocampo
Rm. 416, RVMitra Bldg.,
House of Representatives, Quezon City
Telefax no: 951-1057
Mobile: 09277968198


Barangay San Isidro, Montalban


News Release – October 7, 2009
Reference: Bayan Muna Rep. Satur C. Ocampo, 0917.8226184
For more information: Vince Borneo, Media Relations Officer, 0927.7968198

Satur asks House leadership to prioritize approval of Disaster Management Bill; calls on GMA to certify bill as urgent

Deputy Minority Leader and Bayan Muna Rep. Satur Ocampo called on the House leadership “to prioritize the immediate plenary approval of the consolidated bill for a stronger disaster and risk management organization that would be attached to the Office of the President.”

“It would be best for Speaker Prospero Nograles to calendar the National Disaster Risk Reduction Bill for plenary approval before the break. Likewise, I call on Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo to certify this bill as urgent. This can be a way towards saving face for the absolute government unpreparedness for the onslaught of Typhoon Ondoy,” Ocampo said.

The progressive solon is among the main authors of the consolidated disaster reduction and management bill in the 14th Congress.

“This bill will hopefully spawn a major re-orientation of the current government program on disaster management, including replacing the National Disaster Coordinating Council (NDCC) with a stronger organization, the National Disaster Risk Reduction Council (NDRRC). The NDCC’s miserable failure to swiftly and effectively respond to natural calamities and aid the people is reflective of the government’s over-all orientation regarding disaster response,” Ocampo said.

“Government needs to undertake a full range of programs in disaster preparedness, including education, training and organizing that are not being fully addressed under the present set-up. The Department of National Defense (DND) and Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) are already burdened with other responsibilities. As a result, government actions in disaster management have been generally limited to reactive measures such as inadequate rescue, relief and relocation operations as seen in Marikina, Pasig, Quezon City, Rizal, Laguna and many other areas,” Ocampo said.

“Disaster response should not be a knee-jerk reaction, the way the Macapagal-Arroyo government has been going about it. The consolidated disaster management bill mandates that plans should be made far in advance, giving scientific and rational consideration to the Philippines’ history as a country frequently visited by typhoons and other natural calamities. It is high time to institute an efficient and scientific national disaster risk reduction, management and recovery orientation and framework. Hence the House should fast-track the passage of the bill,” Ocampo said.

“Sufficient funds should be set aside for disaster response campaigns, equipment, medicine, shelter, food and other emergency necessities to ensure the swift rescue of victims and the rehabilitation of affected areas. Needless to say, not a single centavo of these funds should be utilized for any other purpose,” he said. #

Vincent Michael L. Borneo
Political Affairs Officer
(Media and Public Relations)
Office of Deputy Minority Leader
and BAYAN MUNA Rep. Satur C. Ocampo
Rm. 416, RVMitra Bldg.,
House of Representatives, Quezon City
Telefax no: 951-1027
Mobile: 09277968198


Barangay Talayan, Quezon City

IBON Media Release / 3 October 2009

Small entrepreneurs lose P47.3 million income daily, P2.7 billion in capital

Tropical storm Ondoy could cause lasting poverty and severe difficulties for at least 206,000 families in the National Capital Region (NCR), Central Luzon and Calabarzon regions, says research group IBON Foundation.

Even as the government downplays the long-term impact on the economy as a whole, there are going to be severe effects especially on the poorest urban and rural households.

The National Disaster Coordinating Council (NDCC) estimates 629,466 affected families with 3,084,997 individuals as of early morning October 2, 2009. Over 98% of these families and individuals are from NCR, Central Luzon and Calabarzon. There is still no detailed data available of the profile of the victims whether from the government, private sector or civil society groups. However initial estimates can be made by using region-wide occupation and income profiles from the latest Family Income and Expenditure Survey (FIES) of 2006 and applying these to the NDCC’s estimates of affected families.

In the three most affected regions, around 134,839 families relying mainly on entrepreneurial income (i.e. vendors, sari-sari store owners, jeepney and tricycle drivers, etc.) be driven into poverty upon the catastrophic loss of their means of livelihood. They are mainly in Calabarzon (79,633) followed by Central Luzon (36,731) and NCR (18,475). Materials, appliances, stocks, inventories and other goods could have suffered water damage if not outright swept away. These families may be suffering P47.3 million in foregone income every day, aside from having to face the problem of how to recover perhaps P2.7 billion in capital lost (assuming an average loss of P20,000 worth of capital per family).

In addition could be some 70,618 affected families earning wages and salaries less than P100,000 annually in Calabarzon (43,132), Central Luzon (22,366), and NCR (5,120). These are families who were trying to survive on some P8,300 per month before the storm struck and, even assuming that their incomes are maintained, now face the heavy burden of reconstructing their lives and homes. They will face greatly increased expenses for housing, housing repair, medical care, education, and personal effects. Among the critical spending they may be forced to cut back on to accommodate these is on food with corresponding adverse nutritional and health implications.

These are likely conservative estimates in being based on region-wide FIES data. The number of families losing entrepreneurial income is probably much higher. Among the most affected areas are urban poor communities which have high concentrations of informal sector work and, hence, of families in insecure and particularly vulnerable livelihoods. Likewise with the number of adversely affected low-wage and low-salary families which is probably much higher. “Wages and salaries” from employment in the FIES is not necessarily stable and includes compensation even in kind, even from occasional or seasonal work, and whether in agriculture or non-agriculture industries.

According to the research group, government must be held accountable for all these lost incomes and livelihoods. The disaster was triggered by the unexpectedly heavy rainfall but magnified many times over by state neglect of urban planning and infrastructure—of which the poor bear the worst human and social costs.

The rains would not have been as devastating for so many if it had acted responsibly, implemented genuine urban planning, and built proper flood infrastructure. The paltry response after the disaster only worsened an already severe situation. (end)

IBON Foundation, Inc. is an independent development institution established in 1978 that provides research, education, publications, information work and advocacy support on socioeconomic issues.


Plastic bags as rubber boots
Barangay Tatalon, Quezon City


IBON Media Release / 2 October 2009

Group urges aid for relief be channeled through CSOs instead of gov’t

Research group IBON asks how aid for disaster relief given by donor governments was spent, in the face of the administration’s apparent lack of disaster preparedness and response when tropical storm Ondoy hit Luzon last week.

The Philippine government for instance received almost US$1 million in 2006 for reconstruction relief and rehabilitation. In 2007, it also received US$8.5 million in commitments for humanitarian aid, of which US$6.6 million was allotted for disaster preparedness and prevention, and US$1.9 million for emergency response.

Given the allegations of rampant corruption in government and past irregularities in the aid process, the group expressed concern that disaster relief aid could have been misspent and used for personal gain. With the influx of the relief assistance from different donor countries for Ondoy victims through government channels, now estimated at about US$4.8 million, IBON cautions the possibility that these funds may again be unaccounted for.

IBON, a convenor of the national aid network AidWatch Philippines, urged donors that instead of coursing aid for relief assistance through government channels, they should help strengthen the role of community-based civil society organizations (CSOs)-- which have the capacity, commitment, and effectiveness-- in providing disaster relief.

IBON adds that government agencies and other standing quasi-government bodies like the Red Cross have organizational limits in reaching communities to provide relief. Community-based CSOs as well as people’s groups, on the other hand, are in a good position to distribute relief given their reach and awareness of the actual needs of communities. They have the advantage of having a deeper grounding of grassroots organizations in poor urban and rural communities, which allows a greater sense of ownership over relief efforts and sustainability of rehabilitation work.

Community-based CSOs especially those with a longstanding track record of serving grassroots communities can be trusted more that aid for disaster relief will indeed reach areas that need it most. (end)

IBON Foundation, Inc. is an independent development institution established in 1978 that provides research, education, publications, information work and advocacy support on socioeconomic issues.


Barangay Tumana, Marikina City


Donor’s tax hit: Bayan says Arroyo administration milking donations for Ondoy victims
Press release
October 5, 2009

Donor’s tax hit
Bayan says Arroyo administration milking donations for Ondoy victims

Multi-sectoral group Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (Bayan) hit the Arroyo administration for milking private donations intended for victims of tropical storm “Ondoy” through a “donor’s tax” of as much as 15 percent.

At present, only cash donations that go to the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) are tax-free while cash donations to privately-led groups conducting relief efforts for Ondoy victims are charged with taxes of two to 15% for donations worth P100,000 to P10 million, according to the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR). Goods donated for relief efforts also go through the DSWD for them to be duty free.

Bayan said that many non-government groups have launched relief drives that augmented the severely wanting initiatives of government in aiding families displaced by Ondoy.

“We join the call of overseas Filipinos and our foreign friends for donation rules to be eased and that donations to victims should be tax free. There is no sense in having to tax items that are intended for victims, especially when the government itself cannot even provide all the needs of the victims. Government should not be profiting from the relief efforts via taxes,” said Bayan secretary general Renato M. Reyes, Jr.

“There is also the proposal to have alternative channels for the shipment of goods, not just through the Department of Social Welfare and Development. Other accredited institutions should be given the leeway to receive goods directly, tax free,” he added.

Bayan noted that many relief and emergency aid are usually channeled through non-government groups, which in most cases are more prompt and efficient than government in relief operations for disaster and calamity victims.

“The DSWD is not the only one conducting relief operations. There are many institutions and organizations currently engaged in relief work and are in dire need of supplies and funds which they cannot easily get because of the rules being imposed by Malacanang,” Reyes said.

Based on reports from its affiliates abroad, Bayan said that so many balikbayan boxes have already been collected in the US that they now need to ship these to the Philippines but are skeptical of going through the DSWD.

“Why would you want your donation to be repacked and placed in a plastic bag that says “Tulong Mula kay GMA”? That would be a turn-off for some donors,” Reyes said.

Bayan said that in the wake of Ondoy, government should at least be sensitive in these times of extreme difficulties facing the country and stop collecting these taxes. It does not help that corruption and wasteful spending have persisted throughout the term of the Arroyo administration, further making the imposition of taxes more onerous and oppressive for the Filipino people. #




September 28, 2009
For immediate release

BAYAN Canada appeals for help for Typhoon Ondoy victims

BAYAN Canada and all its allied organizations appeals to Canadians, especially to the Filipino-Canadian community to join “Bayanihan para sa Sambayanan” (Peoples Cooperation for People) relief efforts for tropical storm “Ondoy” victims, which battered Metro Manila and nearby provinces on September 26 and left over 140 people dead and thousands of submerged houses and damages properties.

Member organizations of BAYAN Canada have begun with its BALSA or “Bayanihan para sa Sambayanan” efforts by collecting financial support for the relief efforts in the Philippines. BALSA is a BAYAN-initiated network put up more than 10 years ago to concentrate on relief for victims of natural and man-made disasters in the Philippines.

Filipino-Canadian elected officials from Winnipeg to Vancouver have already solicited the support of their provincial governments and are now preparing to mobilize broader Canadian support for the victims of Ondoy. Meanwhile, Filipino-Canadian church people have also called on their communities to donate what they can.

Migrante International on the other hand, calls for the “bayanihan” (cooperation and unity) spirit of all Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs). Administered by the Migrante Sectoral Partylist (MSP), operation "Sagip-Migrante" (migrant rescue) is helping to facilitate the smooth remittance of the relief funds and goods to the right people. OFWs are called modern-day heroes for the billions of dollars they remit to their homeland in support of their families. The ability of OFW’s to collect donations for the victims of Typhoon Ondoy will go a long way in combating the disease, hunger and displacement due to the aftermath of the floods.

Unlike the Philippine government’s slow response to the disaster, Filipinos in Canada are getting organized while material support for the flood victims have begun to flow as fast as the flood waters rose.

Receding flood waters expose more than the dead

Ondoy (international name: Ketsana) brought rains of 341 millimetres (mm) in the first six hours that it struck Metropolitan Manila on Saturday, breaking the highest 24-hour rainfall of 334 mm in Metropolitan Manila in June 1967, according to the Philippines’ weather forecasting bureau. In comparison, Hurricane Katrina dumped 250 mm of rain on New Orleans in 2005.

North American reports say that at least 140 persons were killed and nearly 450,000 families were displaced by massive flooding, but these numbers are rising while the storm flood itself begins to recede. The receding waters are also exposing the inadequacy of the Philippine government in its capacity to respond to these natural and man-made disasters.

The Armed Forces of the Philippines has only thirteen rubber boats to respond to the thousands of cries for help from people who were stuck on rooftops for over twelve hours under the cold and rain, without food. The Philippine government doesn’t even have radar for the weather bureau to accurately indicate the amount of rainfall of the said typhoon.

The tens of thousands of US dollars spent on Arroyo’s dinner forays with her entourage in Washington DC and New York earlier this summer could have been more wisely spent on much needed rescue equipment.

Where to give help

You can connect your local church effort with the churches in the Philippines, particularly through the National Council of Churches of the Philippines ( who have been consistent in ensuring that help gets to those who need it the most.

The Philippine Solidarity Network in Canada has been a long-time partner of the NCCP and other Philippine organizations, especially in its work around Human Rights in the Philippines. The PSNC national coordinator, Malcolm Guy, can be reached in Montreal at (514) 574-9906 or email him at

People can get in touch with the following BAYAN Canada and Migrante organizations through the following contacts:

BAYAN Canada at
Migarante International Canadian chapter at
Migrante Sectoral Party coordinator in Canada, Jonathan Canchela at (647) 833-1023 or email at

BAYAN Canada contacts in major Canadian cities:
Joey Calugay, cell (514) 947-3662
Yasmeen Maryam, cell (613) 558-1625
Diwa Marcelino, cell (416) 809-3492
Jomay Amora-Mercado, cell (204) 509-2491
Red Deer
Aubrey Makilan, (403) 392-7178
Beth Dollaga, (604) 320-0285



CAP-CPC supports BAYAN Canada call to help Typhoon Ondoy victims

You have undoubtedly seen the amazing images of the destruction and death in the Philippines that has resulted from Typhoon Ondoy. The Centre d'appui aux Philippines / Centre for Philippine Concerns (CAPCPC) deplores the deaths and offers its condoleances to the families of the victims. We join with our friends at BAYAN Canada and Migrante organizations in Montreal and across the country to request your help for the victims, who have been abandoned by their own government.

As a member of the Philippine Solidarity Network in Canada (PSNC), CAP-CPC has been a long-time partner of the National Council of the Churches in the Philippines (NCCP) and other Philippine organizations which are mobilizing relief activities for the victims.

If you have suggestions or questions, please contact the PSNC national coordinator, Malcolm Guy, in Montreal at +1 514 574-9906 or email him at capcpc[at]web[dot]ca

Where to give help

You can connect your local church effort with the churches in the Philippines, particularly through the National Council of Churches of the Philippines who have been consistent in ensuring that help gets to those who need it the most.

People can get in touch with the following BAYAN Canada and Migrante organizations through the following contacts:

BAYAN Canada at bayan.canada.noc[at]gmail[dot]com

Migarante International Canada chapter at migrantecanada[at]gmail[dot]com

Migrante Sectoral Party coordinator in Canada, Jonathan Canchela at +1 647 833-1023 or email at migrantepartylist.toronto[at]gmail[dot]com

BAYAN Canada contacts in major Canadian cities:
Montreal – Joey Calugay, cell +1 514 947-3662
Ottawa – Yasmeen Maryam, cell +1 613 558-1625
Toronto – Diwa Marcelinoo, cell +1 416 809-3492
Winnipeg – Jomay Amora-Mercado, cell +1 204 509-2491
Vancouver – Beth Dollaga, +1 604 320-0285

For more information please read the press communique from BAYAN Canada:

Also see: Various progressive groups in Philippines launch Ondoy relief operations: BULATLAT


Centre d'appui aux Philippines / Centre for Philippine Concerns (CAP-CPC)
25 ans de solidarité / 25 years of solidarity
6420 Victoria Avenue, Suite #9,
Montréal, Québec, Canada
H3W 2S7
Tel: +1 514 342-2111

Member - International League of Peoples' Struggle / La ligue international de luttes des peuples (ILPS)
Associate member - International Migrants' Alliance / Alliance internationale des migrants (IMA)