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Sept.21: Never Again to Martial Law! Labanan ang Diktadura!

S21: Never Again to Martial Law! Labanan ang Diktadura!

Filipinos and Allies Across the U.S. Unite to Fight Duterte’s Dictatorship

Artist: Renan Ortiz

As we commemorate the 46th anniversary of the declaration of martial law in the Philippines by Ferdinand Marcos, BAYAN USA joins Filipinos and our allies across the U.S. unite to fight anew the festering dictatorship of Rodrigo Duterte. We will never forget the lessons learned from 14 years of martial law under Marcos, for the realities of the present day constantly remind us of these lessons from the past.

Duterte’s bloody wars on the poor, the Moro, the indigenous people, and dissidents today—do they not remind us of Marcos’ sweeps of activists on campuses and in barrios, wars on the Bangsamoro in Mindanao, and counterinsurgency program Operation Plan Katatagan?

The thousands of lives taken by Duterte’s police through Oplan Tokhang, the military and paramilitary through Oplan Kapayapaan, and the US-armed and advised war in Mindanao, currently still under martial law—do these not force us to remember the thousands of people martyred by Marcos, his constabulary and army?

Duterte’s attacks on the media, dirty removal of political opposition in the judiciary and legislature, ploys to change the constitution today, imprisonment of hundreds of people guilty only of being vocal critics of his regime—are they not reminiscent of Marcos’ media blackouts, disingenuous Constitutional Convention, and assassination of political rivals?

Duterte’s surrender of Philippine sovereignty for loans and financial investments by the U.S., China, Japan and instruments of neoliberalism such as the World Bank—are these not a reminder of Marcos’s Investment Incentives Law and concessions to the dictates of the International Monetary Fund?  

Duterte’s economic policies, new taxes under the guise of reform and economic acceleration, unabated price increases on basic commodities, continuing contractualization of the workforce, and refusal to implement genuine land reform which are plunging the people into deeper poverty—do these not harken back to the sham economic development program and start of the Labor Export Program of Marcos?

Duterte’s open-armed welcome of the U.S. military in Philippine bases, unabated implementation of the Visiting Forces Agreement and Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement, and inaction on China’s occupation of Philippine land and sea territory—do these not bring back the worst memories of the Philippines being the site of the largest overseas U.S. military bases in the world?

Donald Trump’s unequivocal support for Duterte, declarations that the Philippines is the “most strategic piece of real estate from a military standpoint,” and $184 million in funding for Duterte’s wars today—how different are these from Ronald Reagan’s staunch backing of Marcos?

The recent International People’s Tribunal convicted Trump and Duterte as guilty of heinous crimes against the Filipino people and the Philippine nation. The brave testimonies of those who survived violations of human, civil, political, and economic rights remind us of the courage of the people who came forward in the Permanent Peoples’ Tribunal (First Session on the Philippines) of 1980 against the dictatorship of Ferdinand Marcos. The sharing of the verdict with the United Nations and various parliaments and governments worldwide added strong international pressure on the Philippine government to stop the killings and other gross human rights violations in the country.

The workers, students, women, journalists, teachers, peasants, faith leaders, indigenous people, lawyers, and human rights defenders who continue to speak out and fight against Duterte’s tyranny today embody the spirit of resistance of the people who fought the Marcos dictatorship for nearly two decades.

The mass mobilizations of all sectors and classes of Philippine society on International Workers’ Day, Philippine “Independence” Day, and the People’s State of the Nation Address to condemn the fascist US-Duterte regime call forth the strength and resolve of the millions of people who rose up to topple the Marcos dictatorship in 1986.

We will never forget martial law under Marcos. We will never forget the suffering and pain of the masses, but more so we will never forget the people’s courage and unity that persevere today. For the martyrs of the past and present, for the people struggling today, and for the generations to come, we will not stop fighting Duterte’s brand of dictatorship until we achieve genuine, lasting freedom and democracy for our nation.

OUR CALLS:

Never Again to a Fascist Dictatorship!

Fight Tyranny! Resist Duterte’s dictatorship!

Stop the Killings! Stop the Attacks!

Genuine Freedom and Democracy, not Cha-Cha and Tyranny!

Oppose Militarization of our Schools and Communities!

Free all Political Prisoners!

Stop Political Persecution! Activism is not a Crime!

Defend Press Freedom!

Sobra na, tama na, wakasan na! Enough is Enough! End Tyranny!

BAYAN USA 6th Congress Sept 15-16 2018 NYC!

Greetings everyone!

As you may know, BAYAN USA will be hosting its 6th National Congress this weekend Sept 15-16 in New York!  Online Registration will close Sept 10th, 2018. However, you can still register at the door starting on Saturday Sept 15th at 8am!

There are some parts of the weekends events that are OPEN TO THE PUBLIC! Please share these widely! BAYAN USA Congress Day 1 will have our Keynote Speaker  Elmer “Ka Bong” Labog Chairperson of Kilusang Mayo Uno and Vice Chair of Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (BAYAN) and the Resist Imperialist War & Build Solidarity Panel with special guest speakers! In the evening we will host our Solidarity Night Music and Raffle event (see details in flyer)!

In addition to the BAYAN USA Congress, BAYAN USA is taking to the streets and calling for a mobilization action in front of the Philippine Consulate in New York City on Sept 16th. We invite all friends, allies and supporters of the Filipino people’s continuing struggle for genuine sovereignty and democracy to join us as we celebrate the conclusion of our 6th congress with march and rally against US-backed fascism in the Philippines under the Duterte regime. Click here: FB event.

Sept. 16th, March assembly point:
6:30pm at Pershing Square (narrow public area along Park Avenue between 41st and 42nd Streets. Meeting location is by the Citibike rack)

We will march to the Philippine Consulate at 556 Fifth Avenue, between 45th and 46th Streets, where we will hold a program.


 

#DefendBatasan4!

BAYAN-USA denounces the issuance of bogus warrants of arrests for renowned former congresspeople and freedom fighters Satur Ocampo, Liza Maza, Rafael Mariano and Teddy Casino. The excavation of 12 year-old charges that were buried long ago for lack of any credibility is another example of the Trump-backed Duterte regime’s relentless attacks on all who dare challenge the regime’s drive toward dictatorship.

 

Background

In 2006 under former President–and now Speaker of the House–Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, trumped-up charges of rebellion were filed against six progressive party-list representatives including Ocampo, Maza, Casino and Mariano, as well as Crispin Beltran and Joel Virador, who came to be known as the Batasan 6. While the Supreme Court eventually dismissed the rebellion case, the Arroyo government shot back by filing three fabricated murder complaints in December 2006 against Ocampo, Maza, Casino and Mariano. One murder charge was dismissed by the Guimba, Nueva Ecija Regional Trial Court, and then in July 2008, Palayan Regional Trial Court Judge Evelyn Turla found no probable cause in the two murder charges against the four, citing prosecutorial misconduct and lack of evidence. Now, ten years later, on July 11, 2018, the same judge suspiciously reversed her ruling and issued arrest warrants for Ocampo, Maza, Casino and Mariano, despite the absence of any new information and without any explanation.



 

Feeble Attempt to Disguise Repression as Law

This maneuver takes a page from the old Gloria Macapagal Arroyo-George W. Bush counter-insurgency playbook, utilizing the judicial system as a tool of repression. And in just the past month alone, we have witnessed the Duterte regime using every weapon in its dirty bag of US-designed counter-insurgency tricks to silence opposition to Duterte’s reign of terror: the outright murder of peasant, indigenous, and faith leaders; Philippine National Police and security forces of the NutriAsia company violently beating and arresting workers on strike; the massive militarization of indigenous communities in Lianga forcing thousands of people to evacuate; and the underhanded appointment of former president and notorious human rights violator Gloria Macapagal Arroyo as Speaker of the House. The revival of discredited charges against the Batasan 4 that were originally filed under Arroyo is a despicable use of the judiciary as a tool of political repression. The offering of a bounty for the arrest of the Batasan 4 by Attorney Ferdinand Topacio further exemplifies the impunity that the regime is fostering.

 

BAYAN-USA stands in solidarity with the Batasan 4 and demands that the ridiculous warrants of arrest be withdrawn and the case dismissed. We join with the Filipino people and defenders of genuine democracy and freedom worldwide in demanding an end to the regime’s fascist tyranny, in whatever form it takes.

 

Please action on behalf of the Batasan 4 today, and respond to the Movement Against Tyranny’s appeal for letters of solidarity. For more information please contact Ms. Gel Marcelino at (0947) 5891578 and email your solidarity messages to stoptyrannyph@gmail.com. Sample letter below.

 

###

 

Dear friends,

 

Greetings of peace!

 

You are probably aware by now of the dire predicament being faced by former Bayan Muna representatives Satur Ocampo and Teddy Casino, former Anakpawis representative and former Agrarian Reform Secretary Rafael “Ka Paeng” Mariano, and former Gabriela representative and currently NAPC Lead Convenor Liza Maza. The four were issued warrants of arrest for double murder last July 11, 2018 by Judge Turla of the Palayan, Nueva Ecija RTC.

 

The WAO were issued in relation to a 12-year-old case that should have been dismissed at the outset due to lack of evidence, witnesses who lacked credibility and amid a campaign of political persecution by the administration of Pres. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo versus the party lists under the Makabayan Bloc.

 

Attached are materials that you can use for reference.

 

We ask you to sign the attached support statement and/or issue your own so that the judge may be enlightened to dismiss the case and withdraw the WAO.  

 

Maraming salamat.

 

Sr. MARY JOHN MANANZAN

 

Dr. CAROL ARAULLO

 

Convenors, MAT

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

SAMPLE LETTER

 

Injustice casts a long shadow.

We condemn the issuance of arrest warrants by the Palayan, Nueva Ecija court for former Makabayan representatives Teddy Casino, Satur Ocampo and former Department of Agrarian Reform secretary Rafael Mariano and current National Anti-Poverty Commission Convenor Sec. Liza Maza.

 

There is no justifiable reason for the order of Judge Evelyn A. Atienza-Turla dated July 11, 2018.

 

The arrest warrants against the four come ten years after Turla found no probable cause to uphold ridiculous charges of murder. The latest order comes without any explanation for the reversal despite being based on the same evidence, facts and circumstances.

 

There was no murder case to begin with as far as one supposed target, Jimmy Peralta, died in a vehicular accident, as attested by police spot reports.

 

That the four lawmakers ordered the killings of Peralta and one Carlito Bayudang to ensure Bayan Muna victory is an outright lie, a concoction by military handlers of false witnesses.

 

Prosecutors failed to subscribe the affidavits of complainants and their witnesses. They failed to validate or confirm preposterous claims that parroted each other.

 

Judge Atienza-Turla should have dismissed the obvious fabricated murder charges a decade back.

 

That it comes amid rising tyranny of the Duterte administration only casts suspicion on the use of the judiciary for political persecution.

 

The reincarnation of the old Inter-agency Legal Action Group (IALAG) under then President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo as the Inter-Agency Committee on Legal Action (IACLA) is part of the Duterte regime’s assault on pro-democracy forces, which includes efforts to proscribe as terrorists more than 600 individuals, including legal personalities like Ocampo.

We urge Judge Atienza-Turla to reverse a clearly unjust order. Various courts and agencies have already thrown out similar or related cases. Bayan Muna has even been awarded damages on the perjured statements of witnesses.

 

We demand an end to the persecution of  Satur, Liza, Teddy, Paeng and all victims of trumped-up charges.

 

Call to Action #BoycottNutriAsia Support Workers Strike!

19 NutriAsia strike workers, supporters, and journalists

On July 30th, at around 3 p.m., around 50 security guards of NutriAsia and 20 members of Duterte’s Philippine National Police in Marilao and Meycauayan violently dispersed the workers while an ecumenical mass was being held at the picketline near the factory gates. (Source: Altermediya)

We condemn the Philippine National Police’s violent dispersal of the NutriAsia Workers’ picket line in Marilao, Bulacan, Philippines which led to the injury (inc. one elderly grandmother) and the arrest of at least 19 including several workers, youth leaders,  journalists, and supporters. They were also denied access to lawyers. Those arrested included long-time community organizers from Southern California, Eric Tandoc and Hiyasmin Saturay. As of August 1st, the 19 arrested were released based on “further investigation.”

Our Demands:

    • We demand all charges to be dropped and justice for Hiyasmin Saturay, Eric Tandoc, and all those arrested at the NutriAsia picketline!

    • We call for the end of the Trump-backed Duterte regime’s union repression and union-busting tactics!

    • We call for justice for all those injured and unjustly arrested by the PNP’s violent dispersal!

    • We demand NutriAsia fulfill the demands of NutriAsia Workers to end contractualization and to regularize their workforce!

TAKE ACTION:

  1. Launch quick response protests at local Philippine Consulates

  2. Conduct public education, flyering, and outreach at local Filipino grocery stores

  3. Write public statements of solidarity and invite others to support

  4. Boycott NutriAsia Products! Conduct outreach at markets that carry NutriAsia products

  5. Donate to the workers on the picketline (food, water, rice, etc.) tinyurl.com/SupportNutriasiaStrike

  6. Host educational discussions and presentations about the NutriAsia strike:  #BoycottNutriAsia Educational Workshop

  7. Produce art, social media memes, posters, and flyers to inform the public about the workers situation in the Philippines and the need to end contractualization.

  8. Social Media Prompt: Post a video or Photo of yourself throwing away NutriAsia products because they’re trash! (see prompt instructions)
  9. Launch protests at international distributors of NutriAsia to garner widespread support and media attention (see list below)

  10. SIGN THE PETITION:  https://goo.gl/forms/sFQ4XsCVXgErDMe13

CALLS

    • Boycott NutriAsia!

    • End Contractualization Now! Regularize NutriAsia Workers!

    • End Trade Union Repression and State Violence!

MATERIALS:

  • Hashtags:  #BoycottNutriAsia  #SupportNutriAsiaWorkers  #NutriAsiaStrike

  • Tag @NutriAsia in your posts to increase public pressure

  • Download and post Selfie Signs +  Facebook Cover Photo

  • Download Flyers to handout available in English & Tagalog

BACKGROUND

NutriAsia Inc., a multi-million dollar company based in Bulacan, Philippines, manages the production of popular condiments such as Datu Puti, Mang Tomas, Jufran, Silver Swan, Golden Fiesta, Locally, and Papa.  NutriAsia is a highly profitable company earning as much as P27 million (over $500,000) per day. Joselito D. Campos Jr., the owner of NutriAsia and CEO of Del Monte Pacific, has a family net worth of $650 million (2017).  Amongst their 1,400 workers, only 100 are considered “regular” permanent employees while a vast majority of them are considered “contractual” workers–a designation that puts them in an extremely more exploitable and unstable condition.

NutriAsia workers are forced to work for P380 ($7.11 USD) a day for an 8 hour shift, but many workers face 12-16 hour long days and dangerous working conditions.  Workplace injuries have become commonplace, with temperatures reaching greater than 100°F at their work stations, while lacking proper workplace equipment to handle products over 200°F.  Many were compelled to hide their injuries at the risk of being fired.

With the support of Kilusang Mayo Uno (KMU), Workers’ Movement for Change Federation, and Nagkakaisang Manggagawa ng NutriAsia (NMN), the NutriAsia workers have continued to organize for their rights and oppose state repression under the Duterte administration.  In May, NutriAsia Workers launched a picket line to oppose the layoff of 75 contract workers. As the strike continued in June, NutriAsia sent 300 Philippine National Police (PNP) officers to harass the workers and violently disperse them in an attempt to break their strike, resulting in 20 arrests and four people being hospitalized.  According to the International Trade Union Confederation, the Philippines has been considered one of the worst countries for workers in the world.

The NutriAsia workers, who were violently dispersed last month are still holding down their picketline. They are currently in dialogue with the management, but the management is pushing to continue production, which has been stopped since the strike started. If the company does not restart production in August, they won’t be able to produce enough of the products for the increasing demand for the upcoming months, especially the Christmas season.  There are growing concerns the management will send more police and state forces to violently disperse their picketline.

We call on all member organizations and concerned people worldwide to support the NutriAsia workers on strike and to widen the support for their struggle.

Sources:

Video of Arrest of Hiyas Saturay and Eric Tandoc

Altermediya Statement

Video:  Altermediya   

Bulatlat

Video:  Altermediya   

 

CALIFORNIA

JFC INTERNATIONAL.

7101 E. Slauson Ave, Los Angeles CA 90040 (323) 721-6100

MANDALAY TRADING

903 S. Azusa Ave., City of Industry CA 91748 (626) 581-1860

FOOD FOR ALL, INC.

18461 Railroad St., City of Industry CA 91748  (626) 272-9419

G.L. FOOD WHOLESALE

227 Hudson Ave., City of Industry CA 91744  (626) 855-5391 / 5392

J & A IMPORTERS, INC

4398 Ayers Ave., Vernon CA 90023  (323) 780-3998

WALONG MARKETING

6281 Regio Ave, Buena Park CA 90620  (714) 521-8899

FOREMOST FOODS

2883 Surveyor St., Pomona CA 91768  (909) 525-9500 ext 111

KHONG GUAN CORP

30068 Eigenbrodt Way, Union City CA 94587  (510) 487-7800 ext. 103

HAWAII

FAMILY FOODS CO.

1043 Opakapaka St., Kapolei, HI 96707

NEW YORK / NEW JERSEY

UNITED FOOD OF ASIA

287 Vandervoort Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11211  (718) 388-5570

DIAGREX INTL

10-16 Aquarium Dr., Secaucus NJ 07094  (201) 420-8595

GOLDEN FORTUNE

55 Hook Rd, Bayonne NJ 07002  (201) 823-0800 / 9880

MARYLAND

2A MARKETING CENTER

7313  Livingston Rd, Oxon Hill MD 20745  (301)839-9625

RHEE BROS., INC.

7461 Coca-Cola Dr., Hanover MD 21076  (410) 381-9000 x1167

ILLINOIS

GOLDEN COUNTRY

2355 S Blue Island Ave, Chicago IL 60608  (773) 818-2942

TEXAS

ITC INTERTRADE INC.

1505 Sawyer St, Unit B, Houston TX 77007  (662) 750-4111