Eco, faith groups “bless” COMELEC. Pols urged: Prioritize HR, environment
MANILA – ECO GROUPS and faith-based organizations hold a symbolic cleansing, as politicians officially file their certificate of candidacy (COC) before the Office of the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) in this City, on Monday, October 12.
The Philippine Misereor Partnership, Inc. (PMPI), AlyansaTigil Mina (ATM), Philippine Movement for Climate Justice (PMCJ), Episcopal Commission on Indigenous Peoples (ECIP), EcoWaste Coalition occupied the gateway of the COMELEC to urge the candidates to prioritize the environment and human rights in their platform.
“Today, more than ever, we see the need for our leaders to commit to the protection of our environment and defend the rights of our people, most especially those who have been affected by large-scale mining in the country,” said PMPI project officer Ed Garingan.
The groups chanted “Commit to the environment, commit to human rights,” while the youth sector performed environmental songs.
“We would like to find out now who can commit for the environment. Who among them may discard their “trapo” skins and be genuinely active in the protection of our environment and the human rights of our vulnerable sectors,” Garingan added.
Tao Muna, Hindi Mina
National environmental and human rights group ATM, bringing their call against the destructive impacts of mining, once again highlighted the 10 point human rights agenda on mining by intensifying the organization’s campaign Tao Muna Hindi Mina (People first, not mining).
“For the past 2 years, Tao Muna, Hindi Mina has been campaigning to uphold the of human rights of communities in mining-affected areas,” ATM National Coordinator Jaybee Garganera said.
He added that the lack of state accountability to the destructions and human rights violations and abuse brought by mining only sent the battle uphill.
“In the coming 2016 elections, we would like to call on the candidates to adhere to their responsibility as future nation leaders and fulfill their obligation to the environment and the people.” Garganera asserted.
Partnership towards better
“We are hopeful that we can encourage and open the eyes of our lawmakers and politicians to act on this critical matter and make environment and human rights part of the electoral agenda,” PMPI National Coordinator Yoly Esguerra said.
She added that this is urgent given that the projected impacts of the climate change will mostly affect the vulnerable and poor communities and will only get worse if we don’t act on it now.
“Let’s not let things slide. Communities are being displaced because of armed conflicts and natural hazards and it continues to grow, whether in our country or across the globe. Let us start anew and use our electoral power as citizens to elect “Green Leaders” and forge a partnership with them to ensure that the environment and human rights agenda will not be forgotten after they assume office” she added.
For more info, you may reach:
ED GARINGAN, PMPI Project Officer for Anti-mining Campaign, 0922.850.1875, firstname.lastname@example.org
AMOR J. TAN SINGCO, PMPI Comms Officer, 0925.576.7426, email@example.com
CHECK ZABALA, ATM Media and Communications Officer, 0927.623.5066, firstname.lastname@example.org
PMPI/ATM Press Release
12 October 2015
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