HK OFWs “jog” for Migrante
Urge presidential aspirants to support call vs de-listing


Hong Kong


November 8, 2009




Photos courtesy of Migrante Sectoral Party in Hong Kong


Press Release
08 November 2009

For reference: Vicky Casia-Cabantac
Chairperson, Tel. No.: (852) 93572125

HK OFWs “jog” for Migrante
Urge presidential aspirants to support call vs de-listing

“Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) deserve the chance for a representative to the Congress. Any aspiring president should take on the cudgels of advocating for this.

This was the appeal made today by Vicky Casia-Cabantac, chairperson of Migrante Sectoral Party in Hong Kong, as they conducted the Jog for Migrante – a symbolic action for their “Let Migrante Run” campaign calling for the reversal of the COMELEC’s decision to de-list Migrante from the 2010 party-list race.

“We call on those who are intending to run for the highest public office in the land to support the call for allowing Migrante to run. It is incumbent for those seeking the presidency to support efforts that will respect the rights of some 10 million Filipinos abroad, not even including our family in the Philippines,” Cabantac added.

Such call, she added, is based on what is lawful. Two weeks ago, Migrante filed a verified objection to the COMELEC’s resolution based on the fact that Migrante does not fall on any justifiable grounds for de-listing a party-list organization.

Additionally, Cabantac pointed out that the COMELEC defaulted on the proper procedure for de-listing a party-list group as no hearing was conducted prior to the ruling. There have also been party-list groups in the past that were in the same situation as Migrante but were allowed to run.

“We will overcome hurdles that may come our way in our bid to have a genuine representative of OFWs in the Congress. The COMELEC’s resolution de-listing Migrante is illegal and undemocratic and must be reversed,” she stressed.

According to Cabantac, they will solicit the support of advocates, civil libertarians and public officials to add on to the pressure for the COMELEC to decide on their objection as soon as possible.

“Any delay to the COMELEC’s decision narrows the chance of Migrante to fight in the party-list polls. Such can deprive OFWs of genuine and direct representation to the Congress and can make us voiceless in an arena where our rights and wellbeing should be discussed and upheld,” she said.

The group today also launched a public signing of a petition addressed to the COMELEC calling for the junking of en banc Resolution No. 8679.

“We will utilize all means available to make known the illegality and unjustness of the COMELEC’s de-listing. We intend to run and there] is no reason why OFWs should not be given a shot for true representation in the Congress,” she concluded.#



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Press Release
05 November 2009

For reference: Vicky Casia-Cabantac
Chairperson, Tel. No.: (852) 93572125

On Migrante’s verified objection to de-listing
HK OFWs to COMELEC: quit stalling

Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) under the banner of Migrante and supporting organizations, in a protest action at the Philippine Consulate General, chided the COMELEC today for not acting quickly on the verified objection filed by the group against Resolution No. 8679 that de-listed Migrante from the party-list race next year.

“Quit stalling. Each single day that COMELEC drags its feet on this case is another day less for the prospect of OFWs to have a chance to run in the party-list elections,” urged Vicky Casia-Cabantac, chairperson of Migrante Sectoral Party – Hong Kong.

Migrante members in HK submitted today 60 petition letters signed by various groups in Hong Kong that challenged the COMELEC’s decision and also urged the body to allow Migrante to run. The said letters were submitted to the PCG-HK for transmission to the COMELEC in Manila.

“It only took them a couple of minutes to de-list Migrante. Without studying the law to the letter and without any process due to Migrante, the COMELEC took us off the party-list race. Now that we really need for them to act quickly, they take their merry time,” Cabantac added.

Cabantac reiterated the illegality of the decision of the COMELEC as it wrongly implements the party-list law. She also cited the inconsistency of the COMELEC in following the rules as they allowed other party-lists like Bisa, Overseas Pinoy and Banat to run in the 2004 polls even though they were in the same situation as Migrante that lost one election and did not run in another.

“While there are hordes of party-lists that are dubious in its representation of the marginalized such as General Palparan’s Bantay, it is Migrante that is now suffering from such a reckless decision. Even COMELEC Chair Jose Melo has recognized the reach of Migrante to OFWs when he asked for our help in the registration. Why are we the ones targeted now for de-listing?” she remarked.

Cabantac said that they will launch in Hong Kong this Sunday the petition that Migrante is circulating to further press the COMELEC to decide on the contentious de-listing.

“It will be a miscarriage of justice if Migrante is disqualified without any legal justification at all. If COMELEC continues to play deaf and blind to the clamor for reversal of the resolution – which is the right and legal thing to do – then there can really be no reason for the decision other than political repression as Migrante is known for its strong stance against government policies detrimental to OFWs,” she stressed.

Cabantac reported that they will continue to solicit the support of more organizations in Hong Kong for the petition. They will also continue the text barrage to the COMELEC that they started last Sunday as well as urge their family in Philippines to back the campaign.

“COMELEC must act and they must act now. Anything less is a disservice to OFWs,” she concluded.#



Press Release
01 November 2009

For reference: Vicky Casia-Cabantac
Chairperson, Tel. No.: (852) 92572125

Text barrage against de-listing
Migrante-HK says no let up to reverse COMELEC reso

There will be no let up in our demand for the COMELEC to reverse its unlawful decision to de-list Mgrante. COMELEC commissioners will receive a barrage of messages from Filipinos abroad and our family members in the Philippines until they act on the verified objection Migrante filed.

This was declared today by Vicky Casia-Cabantac, chairperson of Migrante in Hong Kong, as they conducted a text barrage to COMELEC commissioners opposing Migrante’s removal from the party-list polls next year.

“Let Migrante Run: this is the legal and just move to do. There is no way that the COMELEC can stand by its resolution to de-list Migrante if it wants to follow the party-list law,” she remarked.

To symbolize their text barrage campaign, Migrante members conducted a mass sending of messages opposing the de-listing. They also sent another message to their family members to join the actions against the de-listing.

“The nationwide presence of Migrante and its chapters and supporters in major countries around the world will not give a respite to the COMELEC until they make right what they did,” Cabantac said.

Cabantac relayed that in the last two weeks, they gathered almost 60 organizations in HK alone to support the call against de-listing of Migrante. She said that the last batch of letters they tried to fax to the COMELEC office couldn’t get through anymore and she believed it was because they were being blocked from doing so after sending the first 40 letters.

“COMELEC can’t shut us for their ill-thought of decision deserves no less than our outrage. Our members shall regularly send an SMS to COMELEC commissioners to constantly remind them that they owe it to OFWs to be fair in their decision,” she added.

According to Cabantac, they will line up more actions to complement the moves of Migrante in the Philippines aimed to push the COMELEC to act on Migrante’s objection.

“Every day that passes and this issue remain unsolved is another day less for the opportunity of Filipino migrants to get a chance for representation in the Philippines Congress. Beyond disenfranchisement, this is injustice,” Cabantac stressed.

Finally, Cabantac said that they shall closely monitor the COMELEC process and coordinate with Migrante national office on future moves to advance the campaign.#