Various sectoral organizations in Masbate mark International Women's Day
KABABAIHAN AT MAMAMAYAN, MAGKAISA!
IPAGTANGGOL ANG KARAPATAN AT KAGALINGAN!

SINGILIN AT PATALSIKIN ANG PAHIRAP NA REHIMENG US-AQUINO!
 

March  8,  2014

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Komemorasyon ng ika 103 araw ng kababaihan sa Masbate.
KABABAIHAN AT MAMAMAYAN MAGKAISA! IPAGTANGGOL ANG KARAPATAN AT KAGALINGAN! SINGILIN AT PATALSIKIN ANG PAHIRAP NA REHIMENG US-AQUINO!
45 na sasakyan karamihan ay truck na malalaki at bus na pati sa bubong ay puno, 2 malaking banka mula sa Burias Island ang dumalo sa aktibidad.
[From Facebook note of Vince Casilihan]

NEWS RELEASE
08 March 2014
 

Reference: JOMS SALVADOR, Secretary General (0918 9182150)/ Public Info Desk (3712302)

MARCH 8: INTERNATIONAL WORKING WOMEN'S DAY AND FOUR MONTHS AFTER STORM YOLANDA
GABRIELA LEADS HUGE WOMEN'S PROTEST MARCH VS. PRES. AQUINO'S CRIMINAL NEGLIGENCE OF WOMEN AND PEOPLE'S WELFARE

More than 10,000 women led the march towards Mendiola near the Malacanang Palace where they held a huge protest action against Pres. Benigno S. Aquino whom they called “pabaya” (negligent) and “pahirap” (burden) to women and their families. Similar women’s protests that gathered thousands of women were also led by GABRIELA chapters in other major cities such as Baguio, Laguna, Legazpi, Naga, Bacolod, Iloilo, Tacloban and Davao.

According to Joms Salvador, Secretary General of GABRIELA, midway through Aquino's term, the lives of women, especially those from the marginalized sectors, have worsened rather than improved contrary to his promise of so-called inclusive growth. “The only sectors he ever included in this questionable growth are the big businesses and hacienderos like him. The number of foodless, homeless, landless and jobless has steadily increased yearly. On the other side, profits of big businesses like Meralco, Manila Water and Petron have grown in leaps and bounds.”

Salvador cited the unabated increase in prices and fees in recent months which has become unbearable for women and their families. “Rice prices, fuel prices, electricity rates, transportation fares, tuition fees, the list goes on and on. Where would women find the money to pay for these when they themselves are jobless, or even if they have jobs, they are bound by just 5 months of contract and receive less than minimum wage with no benefits,” she said.
 


In the past months, GABRIELA has responded with protest actions in response to these price hikes. They stormed the National Food Authority's warehouse to prove an artificial supply lack. They also barraged the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) and Meralco with a series of protests after each announced electricity rate increase. Just yesterday, the women's group picketed the Bureau of Internal Revenue to protest the shame campaign against professionals and the planned taxation of the informal sector even as the agency goes easy on the top 10 billionaires who did not make it to the top 10 taxpayers.

The women's group also took up the cudgels for the victims of Yolanda, mostly women and children, who at exactly four months after, have remained neglected. This morning, they held what they called the “women's black Saturday protest” together with People Surge, an organization of survivors and relatives of victims of Yolanda, in memory of those who perished because of the government's neglect. They tied violet ribbons on the concertina wires that barricade the Pres. Aquino's residence at Times Street in Quezon City.

“While we continue to mourn the fate of our sisters and brothers who died because of the superstorm, we are more enraged by the lack of concern of Aquino and his government for the welfare of the victims. The lives of the victims have not yet normalized and this opportunist government has already bargained their areas to businesses after declaring a “No Build Zone.” Government officials, like vultures, have reportedly gained from kickbacks from substandard bunkhouses and even used the relief goods to perpetuate their own political agenda,” Salvador bemoaned.

In the afternoon main protest action, the marchers symbolically rammed through a more than life-size paper mural of the President and his cohorts enjoying their loot gained from the neo-liberal policies of privatization, liberalization, deregulation and denationalization. “Women will not let such hurdle stop us as we march towards our vision of a society that will create industries that benefit the people rather than capitalists, enrich our lands with harvests that will be shared by all and not only by landlords. We will work to realize this government fit for our children and our children's children,” Salvador ended. ###
 

 
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Photos courtesy of Vince Casilihan
           
     
     
     

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WOMEN OF THE WORLD, UNITE

AGAINST IMPERIALIST GLOBALIZATION

 

By Prof. Jose Maria Sison

Chairperson

International League of Peoples' Struggle

March 8, 2014

 

Imperialism is destroying the lives of women. It is aggravating the exploitation of women and intensifying attacks on women's rights. Through the quintuple  neoliberal policies of pressing down wages, liberalization,  privatization, deregulation and denationalization, imperialism has reversed whatever gains the working women's movement has gained in more than a century of struggles. This is the context of our International Women's Day Commemoration this year.

 

Strewn along the path of neoliberalism are the tortured bodies of hundreds of millions of working women squeezed dry by monopoly capitalist extraction of superprofits. Outsourcing by big multinational corporations have depressed already low wages of workers, with developing countries trying to outdo each other in offering the lowest possible wages to outbid their rivals for contracts. Contractualization of labor, increased production quotas, shorter breaks, and extended working hours have now become the norm.

 

In the drive to bring down production costs, safety measures are ignored. Workers are often locked up in workplaces to prevent escapes, thus turning factories into death traps out of factories. In 2013 alone, thousands of women workers perished in fires in factories in the Philippines and Bangladesh. But most devastating was the collapse of a building in Bangladesh, which killed a thousand of women garments workers. These factories manufacture brand-name clothes sold at high prices in the US and EU.

 

Land and resource grabbing accelerated by neoliberal policies are rendering hundreds of millions of peasant and indigeneous women and their families landless and without income source while imperiling food security. An estimated 80 million hectares of land in many countries in Latin America, Africa and Asia have been subjected to land grab deals, often involving their very own governments. Large-scale mining has destroyed the environment, thus rendering natural disasters more fatal especially to women and children who make up 70% of the victims.

 

At the base of imperialist globalization are the millions upon millions of women living under slave-like conditions while  the imperialists rake up superprofits.. They fill up the void created by the privatization of social services, such as child and health care. In a world of increasing food prices and food insecurity, they take on multiple work to feed their children. Their vunerability to violence  is heightened by the increasing poverty of their families.

 

Imperialist economic plunder and competition are the reasons behind the US military pivot to Asia and the Pacific. Its aim is to ensure the continued resource domination of US imperialism in the region.  This in turn will result in the further deterioration of the economic situation of Asia’s peoples. The new basing arrangements and increased rotational presence of US forces will  put  more impoverished young Asian women and children into the clutches of sex exploiters.

 

Women all over the world are driven by  their dire situation to unite and fight for their rights.  From year to year, as the global crisis worsens, the women’s movement has raised its level of  resolve and militancy and widened its various arenas of action. Women are fighting not only for their very existence but also for the lives of their children and grandchildren. Outraged, they vigorously expose, condemn and oppose the doublespeak of their own governments which try to equate neoliberal policies to development.

 

Women are at the forefront of mass protests and demands for democratization or anti-militarization, or against neoliberal policies and for genuine land reform and national industrialization. In increasing numbers, they  join national liberation movements as armed fighters. They  build women's organizations that are part of the people's struggle and take up issues that are specific to women such as VAW and women discrimination. In the midst of repressive governments, women have shown courage and have fought for their rights even at the risk of losing their life, limb and liberty.

 

Women are reaching out to each other  across nations in a show of unprecedented solidarity against imperialism. They are providing support for each other’s struggle. The latest example of  solidarity has been shown by women's organizations from every part of the globe,  including the US, Europe and Canada. to the striking women garments workers of Cambodia.

Ultimately, it is the billions of toiling women, fighting in concert with their toiling brothers and united across the globe, who will strike the deathblow to imperialism.

 

Women of the world unite!

Resist imperialist plunder and military aggression!

Struggle and fight for women's liberation!

 

     
     
           
     
     
     

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For immediate release
8 March 2014
Reference: GWP Rep. Emmi De Jesus 0917.3221203
GWP Rep. Luz Ilagan 0920.9213221

Women marched to Mendiola to make Aquino accountable for criminal neglect

The Gabriela Women's Party (GWP) marked International Women's Day
(IWD) in simultaneous mass mobilizations in different cities of the
country highlighting the call of Filipino women against privatization
of social services and to defend national patrimony against devious
plots in Congress to railroad Constitutional amendments.

In Manila, Gabriela Rep. Emmi De Jesus joined the huge throng of
chanting, singing and dancing contingent, that reached a peak crowd
size of 15,000, and reached the presidential palace at sunset.

"Sa ika-103 taon ng Pandaigdigang Araw ng Kababaihan, pag-alabin ang
diwa ng makabayan at internasyunalistang kilusang kababaihan. Ang
kilusan ng kababaihan ay nagtatanggol ng buhay, ng kabuhayan,
kasarinlan, at patrimonya, laban sa lahat ng pwersa ng panunupil,
pagsasamantala, at karahasan, na pumapatay sa kababaihan," De Jesus
said.

"On International Women's Day, we pledge to oppose Cha-cha and fight
moves to open our economy and services to foreign capital thereby
opening government hospitals, power, water and other basic services to
foreign business. We must defend our remaining national wealth to
defend the rights of women and reclaim the nation from the failed
presidency of President BS Aquino.
," she added.

In Tacloban City, Rep. Luz Ilagan joined the victims of typhoon
Yolanda to protest the government's criminal neglect of women and
children who marked IWD as the exact fourth month since the disaster
struck on November 8th. Women leaders took turns in denouncing the
Aquino administration's lack of meaningful rehabilitation programs,
and his insistence on rewarding his cronies with juicy reconstruction
deals that would evict residents from their homes.

"Yolanda's winds exposed Aquino as an incompetent, capricious, and
avaricious non-leader, and more so, the most anti-woman president in
history. We make a pledge today to make him accountable for his
criminal neglect," Ilagan ended. ###

Follow me on Twitter @emmidejesus

--
*Representative EMMI DE JESUS
*
*Gabriela Women's Party*
*"Babae, Bata, at Bayan.... Tuloy ang Laban!"*

     
           
     
     
     

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Press release
March 8, 2014

References:
Cristina Palabay, Karapatan secretary general & Tanggol Bayi convenor (09173162831)
Kiri Dalena, Tanggol Bayi convenor (0920-9755575)

BS AQUINO, A BANE TO POOR FILIPINAS, RIGHTS GROUPS DECLARE

“The BS Aquino regime is a bane to poor Filipino women. His presidency has made lives harder and more dangerous for women, especially those who speak out against rights violations and his anti-poor policies,” said Cristina Palabay, Karapatan secretary general and Tanggol Bayi convenor, on the commemoration of International Women’s Day.

Palabay said that “despite the Aquino government’s much-ballyhooed declarations on economic growth under his presidency and on the promotion of equality by his administration, the joblessness rate among women remains high at 35.9% of the labor force, according to the December 2013 survey of the Social Weather Station.” These figures, she said, may be higher because many of the unpaid and family workers are women.

“The Public-Private Partnership program has resulted to forced evictions of poor women and their families from the urban poor communities where such projects were implemented. Poor women also bear the brunt of poverty, as the number of families experiencing hunger in the past years under Aquino has risen,” she added.

Kiri Dalena, co-convenor of Tanggol Bayi said, “as more women are faced with escalating problems, they are also the first to rise to defend their rights, their families’ and their communities’ interests. The Aquino regime seems to be threatened by the poor Filipinas’ defense of their rights, that it has made women human rights defenders targets of state repression.”

Dalena said “18 women activists, most of them human rights defenders, have been killed under the Aquino administration. The loss of these women who have valiantly struggled for genuine pro-people change is unforgiveable.”

Among those killed by state security forces were Cristina Jose, a village councilor and leader of typhoon survivors in Davao Oriental, on March 4, 2013; and Juvy Capion, an anti-mining activist who was massacred in October 2013 together with her two children.

Palabay and Dalena also scored the Aquino administration for its recent appointment of police general Lina Sarmiento as the chairperson of the Martial law victims claims board.

“The appointment of Sarmiento to a top government post is NOT an achievement for Filipino women. It is a grave insult that is tantamount to a slap on the faces of thousands of Filipino women who suffered during the Marcos dictatorship. Aquino successfully proves how he overwhelmingly underestimates our capacity to see through this cheap and superficial shot at women empowerment,” they concluded. ###

     
           
     
     
     
 
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Media Release
08 March 2014

On 103rd Intl Women’s Day
Aquino’s ‘rape of motherland’ hit by women workers

Thousands of females and males from the ranks of workers and the urban poor led by national labor center Kilusang Mayo Uno joined the national protest on the 103rd International Women’s Day to condemn what they call the Aquino government’s “rape of our motherland.”

The labor group condemned Pres. Noynoy Aquino for presiding over the exploitation of the country’s natural and human resources by big foreign and local capitalists, and working to amend the 1987 Constitution in order to remove the latter’s remaining nationalist provisions and to allow the wholesale return of US military bases to the country.

“Filipino women from the ranks of workers and the poor are rising up against the Aquino government’s rape of our motherland. For three years, Aquino has presided over the severe exploitation of our country’ natural and human resources by his real bosses, the big foreign and local capitalists,” said Nenita “Ka Nitz” Gonzaga, KMU vice-chairperson for women affairs.

Before converging with other groups in the main program at Liwasang Bonifacio, women from the ranks of workers and the urban poor gathered at Plaza Lacson in Sta. Cruz, Manila and held a “One Billion Rising” dance protest against the railroading of Aquino’s Charter Change in Congress.

“Aquino is using all his powers to abuse our motherland by trying to change the Constitution and allow foreign big capitalists to turn our country’s resources, public services, and utilities into their own private businesses. It is becoming clear to an increasingly growing number of people that he should be stopped,” Gonzaga said.

She said Aquino is mistaken if he thinks he can railroad his Cha-cha and that workers and the poor, especially the women, are determined to rise up and stop the sell-out of our motherland like they did with previous government’s attempt to carry out the Cha-cha.

The militant labor center also condemned Aquino’s collusion with the United States government in trying to bring back US military bases to the country as part of the world superpower’s political, economic and military pivot to Asia.

“By allowing the return of US military bases to the country, Aquino is allowing US troops to rape our women as part of their rest and recreation, to rape our environment with their nuclear-powered ships and toxic wastes, and most of all to rape our country’s national sovereignty,” said Gonzaga.

Women workers ended today’s protest at Mendiola with a vow to intensify protests and resistance against the Aquino government, warning Aquino that should he push through with Cha-cha and the return of US military bases, they are prepared to rise up and fight for Aquino’s ouster.

Reference: Nenita “Nitz” Gonzaga, KMU vice-chair for women’s affairs, 0928-2794241

 

     
           
     
     
     

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Kabataan Party-List
Rm. 616, North Wing, Batasang Pambansa, Quezon City
March 8, 2014

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

On International Women’s Day
Youth groups march against ‘rape of motherland’

Reference:
Cong. Terry Ridon, Kabataan Partylist Representative (09155310725)
Marjohara Tucay, Kabataan Partylist National Media Officer (09202205556)


In commemoration of the International Women’s Day, youth groups march along with women’s rights advocates in Manila to protest the “rape of our motherland” through local and foreign exploitation.

“On Women’s Day, we seek not only to end all violence perpetrated against women but also to address the primordial roots of violence in our country – the continued and intensifying foreign exploitation of our sovereignty and environment,” said Kabataan Partylist Rep. Terry Ridon.

The youth legislator noted that Philippine sovereignty “is currently being challenged at all fronts,” with China encroaching on our territorial waters, the United States intensifying its military presence in the country, and the Philippine legislature seemingly willing to surrender our sovereignty through charter change.

“Not only are we facing military encroachment from both Beijing and Washington, but here in our very Congress, there is an ongoing move to surrender our sovereignty. With charter change resurrected in Congress, the rape of our motherland will undoubtedly intensify, with new economic provisions allowing the unbridled entry of foreign companies in the country to exploit our natural resources,” Ridon added.

Last Monday, the House Committee on Constitutional Amendments approved Resolution of Both Houses No. 1 principally authored by Speaker Feliciano Belmonte. RHB 1 seeks to revise the Article XII (National Patrimony and Economy), Article XIV (Education, Science and Technology, Arts, Culture, and Sports), and Article XVI (General Provisions) of the 1987 Constitution by inserting the phrase “unless otherwise specified by law” in pertinent sections.

“Why do we say that violence emanates from foreign intervention and exploitation? Throughout history, violence has been perpetrated by invaders upon conquest of new lands. From the Spaniards to the continuing domination of the Americans, our nation has continuously been beaten and persecuted to the point of subjugation,” Ridon said.

“With foreign troops continuing to march on our lands and seas, there is no end to violence. To end violence against women is therefore tantamount to expelling foreign intervention and defending our sovereignty from the hands of Beijing, Washington and even the local ruling elites,” Ridon added.

“Where foreign troops go, lives are lost, women are abused, and our sovereignty is raped. To end violence perpetrated against women and the country, we must rise up to the challenge – let us expel foreign troops and destructive multinational companies in the Philippines. Women and citizens of the country, unite!” Ridon challenged.###

     
           
     
     
     
           
           
           

 

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