Filipinos across the US mount actions

and vigils against the Arroyo regime

 

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February 29, 2008

 

 

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Press Release
29 February 2008

Filipino-American Youth Join the Call to End Corruption,

Oust GMA!

Reference: Jonna Baldres, Secretary General, Anakbayan New York/New Jersey
Contact Info: anakbayan_ny@yahoo.com, 1(646)5787390


New York - The temperature in New York had been in the 20's (in fahrenheit) but the cold weather did not stop the heated vigor of the youth of New York/New Jersey from breaking out, expressing their disgust over the extreme corruption of the Philippine government manifested mainly by the President herself, with the ZTE-NBN scam as the most recent among the corruption allegations pointed at her.

The 28th of February has proven to be a momentous occasion for the New York/New Jersey youth as they ramped along Roosevelt Avenue in Queens, marching around the Filipino community, chanting and carrying banners and placards stating "OUST GLORIA!" slogans.

"Today, we march against corruption and call out to the leaders of our country to hear the cries of the youth. We may be young and living in New York/New Jersey, thousands of miles away from the country, but this does not hinder us from taking part in the nation's plea for honesty and genuine service from our leaders," Danielle Galan, President of Anakbayan New York/New Jersey said.

The mobilization coincided with the national protest action against corruption in the Philippines, with a hundred thousand expected to come out into the streets of Makati City and other key cities in the archipelago. Simultaneously, Filipino-Americans are also holding mass actions in other cities in the United States.

"Corruption is a disease that robs Filipinos of a promising future. It is the same reason why our parents and fellow Filipino youth left the country to search for better lives abroad. Those who engage in it must answer to the nation's call for accountability," Galan added.

White ribbons were given away to be pinned on chest pockets as a sign of protest against corruption. Candles were also lighted as a symbol of hope for the enlightenment of the leaders of our country who have been blindly walking on the dark side.

"The simple means of marching and standing outside in the cold, holding placards and chanting calls is enough to let the Filipino community know that the Filipino youth are aware and very much willing to join the fight for social change," stated Jonna Baldres, Anakbayan New York/New Jersey Secretary-General.

Anakbayan New York/New Jersey is a comprehensive youth mass organization striving for nationalism and democracy that aims to build unity among Filipino youth in the New York/New Jersey area. Anakbayan, its mother chapter in the Philippines has been actively campaigning against corruption and for the ouster of Gloria Macapagal Arroyo. Anakbayan New York/New Jersey is also a member of YOUTH ACT NOW (Youth for Accountability and Truth Now) -- a coalition of Filipino youth, students and professionals from different organizations, schools, colleges, universities, workplaces and communities standing up for truth and accountability in government.

"This coming March 6, the Filipino youth of New York/New Jersey will be joining the YOUTH ACTION DAY in coordination with the national action of youth in the Philippines led by YOUTH ACT NOW. The Philippine national hero, Jose Rizal once said, 'The youth is the hope of the nation'. Now, let's prove it," Yancy Gandionco, Anakbayan NY/NJ Vice President affirmed. ###
 

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Press Release
29 February 2008

Reference: Valerie Francisco, Secretary General, Filipinas for Rights and Empowerment (FiRE)
Contact Info: fire.nyc@gmail.com, 925-726-5768, www.firenyc.org

Fil-Am women in NY echoes the worldwide call for OUST GLO!

New York, NY--The sounds of feet marching on concrete and voices chanting echoed from the streets of Manila to the Filipino hub of Woodside, Queens on a freezing Thursday night. The demands of the Filipino people, migrant or in the Philippines resonated in unison, "GLORIA RESIGN!"

Filipinas for Rights and Empowerment (FiRE), a Filipino women's organization in New York City, stood side by side with other BAYAN-USA organizations, Anakbayan New York/New Jersey and New York Committee for Human Rights in the Philippines to join in the worldwide call to oust the defacto Philippine president, Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.

In the recent unfolding of scandal after scandal in the Arroyo regime has signaled massive public outrage in the Philippines. Millions of dollars have gone into the pockets of Arroyo and her cronies in the economic scandal between the Philippines and 2 telecommunications networks (National Broadband Network-Zhong Xing Telecommunications Equipment Corporation ). The bottom line is, these underhanded deals will profit the GMA administrations and the debts accrued through this scandal will fall on the shoulder of the Filipino people.

Different communities, church people, students, business and professionals, women, etc., in the Philippines have denounced the GMA administration for its graft and corruption. Migrant Filipinos, overseas foreign workers, youth and women alike, are also taking a stand.

 

 

"We understand that the NBN-ZTE deal is the small piece of an enormous, corrupt and crooked web that Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo herself has orechestrated in her unscrupulous and rotten term as puppet president of the Philippines," says Valerie Francisco, Chairperson of FiRE,"ENOUGH IS ENOUGH! Gloria must go!"

Marching in the streets in Queens, NY might seem like a reach from the intensifying political climate in the Philippines. But in reality, our growing migrant community is a stones throw away from the Philippines as our voices echo with the same demands:

OUST GLORIA!
ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!
TAMA NA, SOBRA NA, PATALSIKIN SI GLORIA!
STOP THE KILLINGS!
US TROOPS OUT OF THE PHILIPPINES!

###
--
http://www.firenyc.org
Filipinas for Rights and Empowerment (FiRE) is a mass-based women's organization serving New York City and its surrounding areas. We connect the Filipino diaspora to the women's struggle in the Philippines. By bringing woman-born and woman-identified people together, we challenge pervading stereotypes and create self-defined Filipina identities. For more information, please visit http://www.firenyc.org .

FiRE is a proud member of BAYAN-USA, an alliance of progressive Filipino groups in the U.S. representing organizations of students, scholars, women, workers, and youth. To learn more about the only overseas chapter of BAYAN, and the other organizations in our alliance, please visit http://bayanusa.org/

 

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News Release
February 29, 2008

Reference: Kuusela Hilo, Deputy Secretary-General, BAYAN USA, email: depsecgen@bayanusa.org

Filipino Across the US Mount Actions & Vigils Against Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo

More and more Filipinos in the United States, the largest overseas Filipino community in the world, are taking ownership of the Filipino people's call for an end to the Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo regime in the Philippines. BAYAN USA, a national Filipino-American alliance of over 12 organizations, staged coordinated candelight vigils and protest rallies in at least four US cities, including New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Seattle.

Against backdrop streamers reading "Oust Gloria!", Filipino-Americans gathered on the streets to remember the welfare of their motherland, facing steep social and political unrest under Arroyo's regime. The BAYAN USA actions were staged in coordination with a thousands-strong protest rally in Manila calling for Gloria to step down.

"We may be in the United States, but we are still children of the Philippines, and we want our mother to be safe and sound. She is not safe under Gloria," states BAYAN USA Chair and trade unionist Chito Quijano.

Quijano emphasized that under even years of Arroyo's blatant corruption and lack of regard for basic human rights, more and more Filipinos in the United States have a moral responsibility to speak out.

"Some people think we do not have a right to address political affairs of the Philippines from the US. But they are wrong. We have every right because our remittances prop up the Philippine economy," Quijano added.

Pictures of BAYAN USA actions yesterday can be accessed at http://picasaweb.google.com/oustGLOW/OustGLOWOUSTGLORIA

BAYAN USA also vowed to support actions in Manila in the coming weeks, until such time the Arroyo regime is unseated. ###
 

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Los Angeles
           

 

For Immediate Release
February 28, 2008

BAGONG ALYANSANG MAKABAYAN USA (BAYAN USA) – Southern California
Contact: Chito Quijano
Cell: 626-255-5949
Email: chair@bayanusa.org
 

The People Have Had Enough of Gloria Arroyo

 

Los Angeles – In commemoration of the 22nd anniversary of the People’s Power movement that toppled the Ferdinand Marcos dictatorship, Filipino Americans and allies continued the call for Philippine President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo to step down or be ousted in a candlelight vigil in front of the Philippine Consulate.  US Chapter of Bagong Alyansang Makabayan, or BAYAN USA, is coordinating candlelight vigils nationwide to coincide with the interfaith prayer rally that was expected to draw tens of thousands in the Philippines.

Terrie Cervas, Southern California Regional Representative of BAYAN USA states, “The aspirations of the people for a government that truly meets their needs is reflected in the massive mobilizations that took place last week. Momentum is gaining just as it was prior to the people ousting former President Marcos and Estrada.”

“We continue to protest in solidarity with the Filipino people because no matter what excuses Gloria makes, she has already committed too many crimes against humanity,” says Apollo Victoria, member of cultural arts organization Habi Arts. To date, there have been almost 900 documented extrajudicial killings of activists in the Philippines and over 200 enforced disappearances. 

 

This week marks the anniversary of People Power 1, which ousted the US-backed Marcos regime in 1986. Many are calling for a "new brand" of People Power to target Arroyo.

"This so-called 'new brand' of People Power will have a significant amount of amplified voices call for GMA's removal from overseas Filipinos in the United States. We are the largest overseas Filipino community in the world and supply over 50% of the overall total amount of overseas remittances to the Philippine economy," states BAYAN USA Chair Chito Quijano. "We are economically and politically empowered to make this justified call, as the Arroyo regime no longer has the moral ascendancy to continue."

With the 22nd anniversary of the People’s Power movement that toppled the Ferdinand Marcos dictatorship, Filipino Americans and their supporters will continue the call for Philippine President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo to step down or be ousted in a candlelight vigil in front of the Philippine Consulate.

 

 Download YouTube Video of picket-rally
     
     

 

Terrie Cervas BAYAN USA – Southern California Regional Representative states, “The aspirations of the people for a government that truly meets their needs is reflected in the massive mobilizations that took place last week. Momentum is gaining just as it was prior to the people ousting former President Marcos and Estrada.”###

 

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Seattle
           

 

News Release
February 29, 2008

Reference: Kuusela Hilo, Deputy Secretary-General, BAYAN USA, email: depsecgen@bayanusa.org

Filipinoa Across the US Mount Actions & Vigils Against Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo

More and more Filipinos in the United States, the largest overseas Filipino community in the world, are taking ownership of the Filipino people's call for an end to the Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo regime in the Philippines. BAYAN USA, a national Filipino-American alliance of over 12 organizations, staged coordinated candelight vigils and protest rallies in at least four US cities, including New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Seattle.

Against backdrop streamers reading "Oust Gloria!", Filipino-Americans gathered on the streets to remember the welfare of their motherland, facing steep social and political unrest under Arroyo's regime. The BAYAN USA actions were staged in coordination with a thousands-strong protest rally in Manila calling for Gloria to step down.

"We may be in the United States, but we are still children of the Philippines, and we want our mother to be safe and sound. She is not safe under Gloria," states BAYAN USA Chair and trade unionist Chito Quijano.

Quijano emphasized that under even years of Arroyo's blatant corruption and lack of regard for basic human rights, more and more Filipinos in the United States have a moral responsibility to speak out.

"Some people think we do not have a right to address political affairs of the Philippines from the US. But they are wrong. We have every right because our remittances prop up the Philippine economy," Quijano added.

Pictures of BAYAN USA actions yesterday can be accessed at http://picasaweb.google.com/oustGLOW/OustGLOWOUSTGLORIA

BAYAN USA also vowed to support actions in Manila in the coming weeks, until such time the Arroyo regime is unseated. ###
 

Download statement

     
     
           
     
           
     
           
  Photos courtesy of BAYAN - USA  
           

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