Tag Archives: Elections 2019

[From the web] The dangerous Cardema precedent -RAPPLER.com

This bid is problematic and if approved (it has been given due course but not yet approved by the Comelec en banc), will set a dangerous precedent on 3 grounds. First, because this is a way of circumventing the constitutional prohibition against executive officials using government resources to campaign during the elections; second, because it is also a circumvention of the requirement for appointive officials to resign from their posts when the campaign period begins; and third, because it violates the rule that youth representatives must be 30 years old or less.

The party-list system in the Philippines

According to Republic Act No. 7941, or the Party-List System Act, an organized group of persons may register as a party, organization, or coalition for purposes of the party-list system. These groups can participate in the system as a national, regional, or sectoral party. If they participate as a sectoral party, they should represent laborers, peasants, fisherfolks, urban poor, indigenous cultural communities, the elderly, handicapped, women, youth, veterans, overseas workers, and professionals.

Each of these parties shall submit to the Comelec at least 5 names of members. These nominees will form the list from which party-list representatives shall be chosen in case the party-list group obtains the required number of votes.

The nominees for party-list representatives should be natural born citizens of the Philippines, registered voters, residents of the Philippines for a period of at least one year, able to read and write, bona fide members of the party or organization which they seek to represent for at least 90 days before election day, and at least 25 years of age on the day of the election.

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[From the web] Philippines ‘Drug War’ Top Cop Elected to Senate -HRW

International Criminal Court Should Investigate Ex-Police Chief

Many pundits have interpreted the recently concluded midterm elections in the Philippines as an endorsement of President Rodrigo Duterte’s “war on drugs.” Duterte’s favored candidates dominated the Senate, House, and local elections, prompting foreign affairs secretary Teodoro Locsin, Jr. to pronounce, “he [Duterte] and the war just won” and the “war goes on.”

However one views the election results, it won’t change the fact that victorious candidates implicated in “drug war” crimes shouldn’t receive a get-out-of-jail-free card. Newly elected senator Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa was Duterte’s police chief when the “drug war” began after Duterte took office in June 2016. Dela Rosa presided over a Philippine National Police that routinely shot and killed drug suspects, claiming without proof they resisted arrest. Investigations by rights groups, including Human Rights Watch, and the media found numerous instances in which the police planted weapons and drugs on victims to cover-up the killings.

The police say that over three years they killed about 5,300 drug suspects who fought back, an unverified claim that also ignores the role of police-backed vigilantes responsible for many more “drug war” killings. The governmental Commission on Human Rights estimates that more than 27,000 have died in the “drug war” – a number that grows daily as killings extend from Metro Manila to other urban areas.

Dela Rosa was as vociferous in carrying out and defending the “drug war” brutality as Duterte was in justifying it. “If many believe that the number of drug addicts has gone down,” he told reporters during his senate campaign, “then somehow we are successful.”

Dela Rosa may still have a date with justice. The Duterte government has shown it won’t carry out necessary investigations, but the International Criminal Court (ICC) could. Although the Philippines has officially withdrawn from the ICC, the court, which is conducting a preliminary examination into killings during the anti-drug campaign, can still investigate alleged crimes against humanity that occurred while Dela Rosa was police chief, and any other crimes “occurring in the future in the context of the same situation.” Now that Dela Rosa is a policymaker, there is renewed urgency in bringing all those responsible for “drug war” crimes to justice.

By Carlos H. Conde
Researcher, Asia Division
Human Rights Watch
@condeHRW

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[In the news] Agri, fishery groups cheer, jeer poll results -INQUIRER.net

The result of the country’s national elections, which could spell a stronger administration push for federalism and other controversial policies, drew mixed reactions from agriculture and mining groups.

Promining organizations chose to tiptoe around the poll results, while activist groups expressed dismay over the dominance of “convicted plunderers” and “political lackeys” in the winning circle of new senators.

Others gave credit to officials who managed to snag a Senate seat “through their track record.”

In an interview, Samahang Industriya ng Agrikultura (Sinag), one of the biggest agricultural groups in the country, said it was not looking at the individuals but rather at “profarmer legislation.”

The group however cited the reelection of Senators Cynthia Villar, Grace Poe and JV Ejercito as a win for the industry.

“They’ve proven their support [for] local agriculture,” said Sinag chair Rosendo So. “We believe the people who delivered them their success were comprised of those from the rural sector,” he added.

As for neophytes like former presidential aide Bong Go and former Philippine National Police chief Ronald dela Rosa who ranked third and fifth in the latest update of the senatorial race respectively, Sinag said they were hoping that the two men’s “campaign of being propeople would be realized.”

But activist groups Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (Pamalakaya) and Alyansa Tigil Mina (ATM) expressed dismay over the results of the national polls.

“We see the dominance of traditional politicians, convicted plunderers and political lackeys of the Duterte administration in the winning list of senators. This does not bode well for transformative social change,” ATM said in a statement.

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Agri, fishery groups cheer, jeer poll results

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[In the news] Young voters value human rights, press freedom – Dakila -RAPPLER.com

Human rights, press freedom, and equal access to a fair justice system are some of the issues that young Filipino voters deeply care about, according to artist-activist group Dakila.

Dakila’s head of partnership engagement Aly Suico made the comment in a chat with Rappler CEO Maria Ressa on Monday, May 13, as people headed to their polling precincts to vote. (LIVE UPDATES: Philippine elections 2019)

Suico, who with Dakila has conducted creative and advocacy workshops in universities nationwide, believes that the youth – aged 18 to 30 years old – know exactly what changes they want to see in their communities. (READ: Youth and elections: Is there such a thing as a ‘youth vote’?)

“They’re a bit more decided on what they know is wrong, what they know is right, what they want, basically,” she said.

For example, she said, students in the Visayas are more interested in environmental sustainability and those in Luzon are focused on safety and security.

However, regardless of their area, their sentiments share a common theme: “Something they all want is for human rights education to be institutionalized in their educational system…and usually at the top of what they want is all Filipinos to have equal access to a fair…and efficient justice system. A lot of them are very affected by disinformation. Again, press freedom is a very big thing with them [and] campus repression in their schools.”

She recalled how, in their workshops, students would share that they’re feeling tired or hopeless as the people they’re trying to reach in their advocacies in turn try to disempower them.

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[Statement] Alyansa Tigil Mina (ATM) is dismayed with the results of this elections

We respect the electoral exercise and the will of the people. But we see the dominance of traditional politicians (trapos), convicted plunderers and political lackeys of the Duterte administration in the winning list of new senators. This does not bode well for transformative social change.

We see new senators who are compromised by big corporate interests because either they were financially supported by business enterprises, particularly mining and extractive interests l, or they are actually beneficial owners of these corporations.

We are deeply troubled by the erratic performance of COMELEC as it failed to ensure the transparency and integrity of the electoral results, when it’s Transparency Server went down for several hours last night.

We expect this new Congress to sideline again the Green Bills – the Alternative Minerals Management Bill (AMMB), the National Land Use Act (NLUA) and the Forestry Management Bill (FMB). These bills will never be passed with the newly-elected Senators who will stop the passage of these bills that will protect our natural resources and ensure that we are able to respond appropriately with the realities of climate change.

Our alliance is afraid that ChaCha will be fast-tracked and that foreign-ownership of mining companies and mining operations will be allowed. This will result to more displacement of rural poor communities and additional deforestations, as more areas will be opened up for more the extractive industries.

We anticipate the the federalism project will be fast-tracked as well, and we will be vigilant in working with affected communities and other environmental groups to protect our patrimony and natural resources from misplaced economic and industrial projects that threaten our environment.

We will re-group and assess the new political landscape that we are operating. We shall consolidate our members and work with local governments to resist the entry or expansion of more destructive mining operations.

We remain open to work with national government agencies and officials to pursue sustainable development, but we will continue to protect the rights of communities and individuals to a safe and sound environment, as enshrined in our 1987 Constitution.

We will resist traditional politicians, misogyny, authoritarianism, fascism and the rape of our environment.

We will continue to be vigilant as activists, feminists and environmentalists as we uphold all human rights for all.

Jaybee Garganera
ATM National Coordinator
nc@alyansatigilmina.net

ATM statement
May 14, 2019
Quezon City

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[Press Release] “Endgame”- human rights, environment groups’ final push for 2019 electoral agenda -PAHRA

Manila, Philippines—Human rights defenders, environmentalists, and grassroots communities held on Wednesday a series of activities in a final push for what they called “rights-centered” electoral agenda in the upcoming May 2019 elections.

Using hashtags #SampuSigurado, #IsyuHindiKandidato and #SagotMoBaAko, the Philippine Alliance of Human Rights Advocates (PAHRA), Greenpeace SEA-Philippines, Alyansa Tigil Mina (ATM), Bantayog Initiative, In Defense of Human Rights and Dignity Movement (iDEFEND), and Center for People’s Empowerment (CPE) in cooperation with the Most Holy Trinity Parish warned of dire consequences of electing candidates who are enablers of human rights violations, environmental destruction, misogyny, poverty and the culture of war.

“There is hardly room for any of the people’s issues in this highly polarized electoral campaign,”says Rose Trajano, Secretary General of PAHRA, “we want to remind the people that the elections is their direct act of putting their agenda into government, so it should be taken seriously”.

Media personality Jun Sabayton held a program early afternoon at the Welcome Rotunda in Quezon City which encouraged voters to elect candidates who put the people’s interest first.

Speaking on electoral agenda number 7, Greenpeace Southeast Asia – Philippines’ campaigner Ms. Virginia Benosa-Llorin stressed that “We want leaders who will prioritize supporting smallholder farmers and fisherfolk to produce food that is healthy for Filipinos and the environment. We want public servants who will commit to addressing food and nutrition security for all.”

The group marched to Blumentritt Avenue then to the Most Holy Trinity Parish in Balic-balic Sampaloc where a mass was held to pray for peaceful and orderly elections as well as to remember those who lost their lives in the violent three years of the Duterte administration.

iDEFEND spokesperson Ellecer Carlos said the race for twelve Senate seats are crucial because proposed legislation which is devastating to human rights are just waiting to be passed, such as Charter change, lowering of the minimum age of criminal responsibility, re-imposition of the death penalty, and unli-martial law. “Electing candidates who support the #SAMPUSIGURADO agenda gives us all a fighting chance to save lives and livelihoods, freedom of the press, our remaining democratic institutions, our patrimony, and natural resources”, Carlos added.

Speaking on electoral agenda number 8, Greenpeace Southeast Asia – Philippines’ campaigner Ms. Desiree Llanos Dee said

“We are looking for public servants who would respect and fight for Filipinos’ rights to life, to health and to livelihood, including the realization of our constitutional rights to a healthy and balanced ecology. We want champions who will transform our cities into secure, safe, livable and sustainable cities and municipalities. We want leaders who would ensure that we all get to work safely without spending too much time in traffic-ridden, flood-prone, and air-polluted streets and byways. We will look for leaders who will rid of plastic pollution in our surrounding and waterways, leaders who will ensure that Filipinos have a steady supply of water, electricity and other basic services including providing early warning systems to enable quick response to climate emergencies.”

“Standing for national sovereignty is in our national interest,” said Atty. Virginia Suarez, Secretary General of Kilusan Para sa Pambansang Demokrasya, “we cannot leave our fate in the hands of other nations who have their own interests in mind. We need a government who has a strong political will regarding this”, Suarez added, referring to the Chinese occupation of islands in the West Philippine Sea.

In the evening the group held an oath-taking ceremony in front of the parish where they vowed to elect candidates who hold the highest qualifications and commitment to human rights, environmental protection, equal justice, and inclusive peace.

PRESS RELEASE
8 May 2019
Contact: Mr. Rommel Yamzon, Philippine Alliance of Human Rights Advocates (PAHRA) 09063959976

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[Video] Lakbay ng Taumbayan! -KALIPUNAN

Alamin ang kuwento ng pagpupunyagi, pag-asa at paghamon ng mga manlalakbay mula Marawi at Baguio hanggang Manila, kung bakit kinakailangang isulong ang adyenda ng taumbayan, labanan ang Chacha at Pederalismo, at magkaisa ang mga batayang sektor tungo sa lipunang para sa lahat, hindi sa iilan.

Ito ang mga kwento ng #LakbayNatin

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[Event] #SampuSigurado: Miting De Avance ng Sampung #KarapatDapat na Agenda, May 8 -PAHRA

Malugod po namin kayong inaanyayahan sa ating pinakamalaking pagkilos sa ika-8 ng Mayo 2019. Ito po ang culmination o dulo ng ating kampanyang #KARAPATDAPAT , 10 POINT HUMAN RIGHTS ELECTORAL AGENDA and Beyond , na ang layunin ay magsilbing gabay ng publiko sa pagpili ng nararapat na kandidato. Ang kampanya ring ito ay nagsisilbing hamon sa mga kandidato na maging pangunahin ang karapatan at dignidad ng tao sa kanilang mga programa o plataporma de gobyerno. Ang okasyong ito ay magsisilbing Miting de Avance para sa Karapatang Pantao.

Para sa kondukta at detalye:

Unang pagtitipon: 3:00 – 4:00 pm, Welcome Rotunda
pangungunahan ng Greenpeace (GP). Magbubuo ng human chain sa paligid ng monumento na may hawak ang bawat isa ng placards, at iba pang gimmick pang media. Matapos nito, magmamartsa papuntang Blumentritt corner España.

Pangalawang pagtitipon: 5:00 – 6:00pm Blumenttrit St. corner España, ,
pangungunahan ng PAHRA at iDEFEND. Magkakaroon ng isang maikling programa. Mamimigay ng polyetos at hihikayatin ng mga tao sa paligid na sumama o dumalo sa ating pagkilos. Magmamartsa papuntang Most Holy Trinity Parish.

Pangatlong pagtitipon: 6:30-7:15pm Misa sa Most Holy Trinity Parish at 7:30pm -9:00 programa.
Pangungunahan ni Fr. Enrico Martin Adoviso and misa . Mayroon pong entablado sa church grounds na kung saan magkakaroon ng mga pagsasalita at kultural na pagtatanghal.

Iminumungkahi sa mga dadalo na magbaon ng tubig, damit na pamalit, pamaypay at payong upang panlaban sa init.

Hinihikayat po na bukod sa ating mga staff, magpadalo rin ng mga tao mula sa ating mga kumunidad na kinikilusan. Mayroon po tayong mga nakalaang sasakyan para sa mobilisasyon. Malugod din po naming tatanggapin ang anumang donasyon o pledges para sa mga kakailanganin natin.

Inaasahan po muli ang inyong positibong tugon at walang sawang suporta sa pagkilos nating ito.

Pasa sa iba pang detalye, maaaring makipag-ugnayan sa PAHRA (09063959976).

https://www.facebook.com/philippinehumanrights.org/

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[Event] Miting de Avance ng Taumbayan, May 10

Makiisa sa Miting de Avance ng Taumbayan!

Tatlong araw bago ang national midterm elections, dinggin ang #AgendaNatin para sa isang malayang senado laban sa chacha at diktadura.

Kita-kits sa May 10 sa People Power Monument! Simula ng programa: 4:30 pm.

4:30 PM – 5:30 PM
Panalangin ng Taumbayan para sa Malayang Sanado
5:30 PM – 9:30 PM
Miting de Avance ng Taumbayan

https://www.facebook.com/events/265792554212732/

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[In the news] ‘Running priest’ tells Catholic Duterte supporters: Pray! Discern! -GMA news

Running priest Fr. Robert Reyes on Sunday urged Catholics who are supportive of President Rodrigo Duterte to pray and listen to their conscience as they pick candidates to vote for in the May 13 polls.

Reyes, along with a group of Otso Diretso supporters, ran along the busy Quezon Avenue in Quezon City earlier in the day as a call for democracy in the upcoming elections.

The run ended in Welcome Rotonda, where a sea of Otso Diretso supporters converged to show support to the opposition slate.

“Ang mahalaga sa Katoliko ay ‘yung tinatawag na discerned vote. ‘Yung boto na pinagdasalan, hindi ‘yung sinulsol, idinikta, iniutos. Dapat itinuro ng konsensiya,” he said.

Read more @www.gmanetwork.com

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