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#JusticeforKian Kian is every OFW’s son - Sun, 08/20/2017 - 03:01
Migrante International extends its most heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of 17-year-old Kian Lloyd delos Santos, the latest victim of President Rodrigo Duterte’s ruthless war on drugs. We grieve with the delos Santos family, especially Kian’s mother Lorenza, an overseas Filipino worker from Saudi Arabia. Lorenza has captured the hearts of OFWs and […]
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Solons condemn tokhang slay of Grade 11 student - Fri, 08/18/2017 - 08:06
PRESS RELEASE 18 August 2017 ACT Teachers Rep. Antonio Tinio and France Castro hit the killing of a 17-year old public school student by Caloocan police during the “One-Time, Big-Time” operation or Oplan Galugad of the PCP-7 Drug Enforcement Unit Thursday night. “We condemn this most deplorable killing of a child on the incredible pretext that he was a drug suspect and ‘nanlaban’—the modus operandi of elements of the PNP in the Duterte administration’s war on drugs,” said Tinio. “This is yet another proof that Tokhang is a fascist, anti-poor tool in the guise ...
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Youth party joins ‘Black Friday’ protest vs drug killings, state fascism - Fri, 08/18/2017 - 03:13

Kabataan Partylist mourns and protests a ‘Black Friday,’ as youth and student groups held actions in various schools to condemn the continuing state fascism under the Duterte regime.

The youth party expressed that it vehemently condemns the continuing extrajudicial killings, especially the spike on what was called the ‘bloodiest night’ yet of the war on drugs.

Body counts as a measure of progress

“The so-called war on drugs is quickly failing. From strong pronouncements to end the drug war in 3 to 6 months, Duterte, scratching his head in frustration, frankly admits he cannot end this war, and pleads for another 6 years to do so.”

“Insisting that drugs are the root of all evil, Duterte stubbornly refuses to confront the roots of poverty head-on, and insists on using body counts as his metric of progress,” Kabataan Partylist Rep. Sarah Elago said.

“Duterte just praised a 32-death toll and urged 32 more daily, in effect leading to the 25 kills in Manila and 7 in Cavite immediately the next day. If it wasn’t enough, he also ordered shooting of human rights’ advocates and other critics,” Elago added.

Casualties among the youth and mandatory drug testing

Duterte said in his SONA that he will not allow the ruin of the youth. However, among the latest victims of the drug war is a 17-year old Grade 11 student killed in an Oplan Galugad Operation in Caloocan City.

This incident involving a minor has heightened the opposition of students from various schools against CHED and DepEd’s mandatory drug testing.

“With this and many other unfortunate, tragic incidents, we have no reason to believe that the mandatory drug testing in senior high school and college will not lead to another extra-judicial killing. DepEd and CHED must stop this or else blood would be on their hands.” Elago said.

Guns, bombs and the army

“Duterte’s consistent over-reliance on guns, bombs, and military intelligence, as his panacea for drugs and terrorism, shows his utter disinterest in genuine social reforms. The closure of the peace talks, supposedly centered around socioeconomic reforms, and the rejection of Social Welfare secretary Judy Taguiwalo, prove this further,” Elago said.

“The people are simply becoming more determined than ever to oppose the fascist US-Duterte regime. We demand justice for the victims, and call for an end to the war on drugs, and these wars that are going nowhere. The intensifying fascism of the regime will not silence the Filipino people in their call for a just and humane society,” Elago ended. ###

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AFP using people’s money to atack Lumad schools -solon - Thu, 08/17/2017 - 08:00
PRESS RELEASE AFP using people’s money to attack Lumad schools -solon   ACT Teachers Rep. France Castro slammed the military for its attacks against Lumad schools, at the deliberations on Monday on the 2018 budget of the Armed Forces of the Philippines.   “Matagal nang nakararanas ng matitinding atake ang Lumad schools mula sa military and paramilitary ranging from threat, harassment, and intimidation of teachers, students, and community leaders, to encampment by soldiers of schools and destruction of school property and premises, up to extrajudicial killings,” said Castro. “Worse is the bomb threat issued by ...
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On the trillion-peso Build, Build, Build Program vis a vis the lack of funds for housing in the 2018 budget and Human Rights - Thu, 08/17/2017 - 07:49
ACT Teachers Party-List Antonio Tinio Press conference, 17 August 2017 (Transcript)   On the trillion-peso Build, Build, Build Program vis a vis the lack of funds for housing in the 2018 budget:   Yung budget ng DPWH, and of course ang isang pinagmamalaking highlight ng budget na ito—itong first full budget ng Duterte administration ay yung infrastructure component, yung BBB, Build Build Build.  Ang tawag nga ni Secretary Villar ay “golden age of infrastructure”. Mahigit one-third ng P3.6 Trillion National Budget ay infrastructure. Of course, ang sinasabi nila para daw umunlad ang ekonomiya, para daw ...
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Duterte budget slashes funds for school building - Thu, 08/17/2017 - 06:25
PRESS RELEASE 17 August 2017 Duterte budget slashes funds for school building ACT Teachers Party-List Rep. France Castro revealed that the 2018 budget proposed by the Duterte administration slashed by P3.245 billion the school building programs of the Department of Public Works and Highways and the Department of Education. The 2018 proposal sets P352 million for Construction/Repair/Rehabilitation/Improvement of School Buildings under the DPWH and P112.379 billion for the Basic Education Facilities Program under DepEd (P106.079 billion for construction, replacement, and completion of schools and classrooms and P6.3 billion for rehabilitation, renovation, and repair), or ...
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Youth party denounces continuing drug war, census of ‘bakwit school’ - Thu, 08/17/2017 - 04:39

Kabataan Partylist today joined youth groups as they march to condemn the continuing state fascism under the Duterte regime. This is as various government agencies are set to “census” the bakwit school established by the Lumad earlier this month.

“Duterte has started wars he cannot finish,” Kabataan Partylist Rep. Sarah Elago said.

Continuing martial law and threats to Lumad

The youth party condemns the continued threats on the lives of our Lumad brothers.

“His regime spits as many airstrikes as his cuss words. Daily threats of bombs have resulted to the killing of citizens in Mindanao and the forced evacuation of the rest. The US even seems to want in, through their plans of “assistance” operations in the Mindanao siege.”

“Lumad communities have gone ‘bakwit’ in Manila to continue their classes at their ‘bakwit school.’ Now, the AFP, in collusion with the NCIP, wants to “census” the “bakwit school” in their vain attempts to pressure them to leave,” Elago said.

War on drugs

The youth party also condemned the President’s enabling and admiration of the killings under the war on drugs.

“His war on drugs is quickly failing. From strong pronouncements to end the drug war in 3 to 6 months, Duterte, scratching his head in frustration, frankly admits he cannot end this war.”

“He blatantly refuses to face the roots of poverty and criminality, and instead persists on measuring his ‘achievements’ by how many bodies his regime have killed. The body count of 12,000 is increasing fast. He even acclaimed the recent killing of 32 drug users in Bulacan, saying “that’s good.” In desperation, he sought marching orders to kill human rights defenders as well. What madness,” Elago said.

“He even wishes to target the youth by enabling options for schools to enforce mandatory drug testing as a requirement for admission and enrolment in college, as well as random drug testing in high schools,” Elago added.

Continued call to action

“No matter who his targets are, it is the people who lose. No one else benefits but US imperialism and its operatives in the military, Cabinet and Houses. Solons are scrambling to benefit from the aid and infrastructure projects the US, China, and Russia are pouring in the country, especially in Marawi and the rest of Mindanao.”

“The people are more determined than ever to oppose the fascist US-Duterte regime. Now, more than ever, we must march to call for an end to these wars that are going nowhere. The intensifying fascism will not silence the Filipino people in their call for a just and humane society,” Elago ended. ###

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Solons condemn rejection of Taguiwalo - Thu, 08/17/2017 - 02:24
PRESS RELEASE 16 August 2017   ACT Teachers Representatives France Castro and Antonio Tinio slammed the Commission on Appointment’s rejection of the appointment of Department of Social and Welfare Secretary Judy Taguiwalo.   “This rejection of Secretary Taguiwalo’s appointment is also a rejection of the reforms she instituted in order to end political patronage in the management of public funds. It is a rejection of the kind of DSWD that genuinely served the poor and marginalized,” said the solons.   “Sec. Judy’s rejection is a tremendous loss for the people for whom she stood as DSWD chief,” ...
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Youth party condemns removal of Sec. Judy Taguiwalo from office - Wed, 08/16/2017 - 07:16

We express our utmost condemnation to the US-Duterte regime for the effective removal of Judy Taguiwalo as Secretary of the Department of Social Welfare and Development.

It was, however, nothing short of expected. Duterte has turned its back on his promises of significant reforms and change to the Filipino people, long since they have turned out to be empty rhetoric. Sec Judy’s removal is a victory for the corrupt bureaucracy, neoliberals in the regime, and the de facto military junta and their US masters.

Duterte could have easily swayed his supermajority in the Senate and Congress to push for her confirmation. But alas, instead of confirming Taguiwalo, he just confirmed his puppetry to the US and its head operatives in the country.

Sec Judy’s defiance of pork barrel, bureaucrat capitalism, and patronage politics, as well as her stance to directly deliver social services to the people, have earned the ire of the Senate and Congress majority who wish to milk the DSWD’s funds for themselves. Despite her position in the Duterte cabinet, she has openly condemned Duterte’s anti-people policies, especially the regime’s martial law. Sec Judy has vehemently pushed for the progress of the peace talks, as a venue for significant social reforms.

Her removal will signify the return of the DSWD’s nature to fuel the neoliberal framework, through dole-outs and programs funded from foreign aid and debt. These programs are set to also serve counterinsurgency programs in the rural areas.

The US-Duterte regime is bent on removing Sec Judy and pursuing progressives in the Cabinet to silence its political critics, quell the people’s resistance, and further strengthen its hegemony.

The people are keenly aware that service to the people does not and will not end on headships of agencies of the reactionary state. Sec Judy continues to fight, along with the people’s rising movement, against the fascist US-Duterte regime, and for genuine change. ###

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Republic of the Philippines


Quezon City




Second Regular Session















WHEREAS, with the crafting of the National Reclamation Plan (NRP) on February 25, 2011, under the Aquino administration, and approved by the Philippine Reclamation Authority (PRA) as per Board Resolution No. 4161, one hundred two (102) reclamation projects were identified to be implemented for 2011 to 2020, covering 38,000 hectares of foreshore areas across the country, with 26,234 hectares or about 70% located in Manila Bay, but early this year, the agency reduced it to 96 projects;


WHEREAS, with the heightened promotion of the Duterte administration to infrastructure projects, under the “Build, Build, Build” agenda, as hinted by the P1.097 trillion allocation or about a third in the 2018 national budget, it is of much likelihood that identified projects in the NRP are included or in modified form, hence, posing an impact on various sectors, primarily the fisherfolk communities of covered areas;



WHEREAS, according to former Anakpawis Party-list Representative Fernando “Ka Pando” Hicap and National Chairperson of Pamalakaya – Pilipinas or the National Federation of Small Fisherfolk in the Philippines, reclamation projects in the country are converting productive fishing communities and communal waters into eco-tourism hub, commercial business districts (CBDs), even industrial estates, that are beneficial to the interest of big businesses, predominantly of foreign developers at the cost of the displacement or wiping out of fisherfolk and urban poor communities and of other marginalized sectors;


WHEREAS, Pamalakaya – Pilipinas asserted on reclamation in Manila Bay that:

  • from decades ago until 1995, mangrove areas in Manila Bay used to size at 54,000-hectares significantly shrank to 2,000-hectares and at present, a diminutive less-than-a-500-hectare is left;


  • in 2002, upon start of construction of the Entertainment City or  the Bagong Nayong Pilipino – Entertainment City project in Manila Bay along Roxas Boulevard in Parañaque City, more than 6,000 fishing families were effectively displaced from their community and livelihood;


  • in 2011, upon completion of the R-1 Expressway Extension project and reclamation of about 7,500-hectares of shoreline along Manila Bay, about 26,000 fisherfolk and urban poor families are still threatened to be displaced from their communities;


  • in 2012, the fisherfolk group joined Senator Cynthia Villar, Kalikasan People’s Network for the Environment (KPNE), Center for Environmental Concerns (CEC), People’s Network for the Integrity of Coastal Habitats and Ecosystems (People’s NICHE) and multi-sectoral groups in opposing the P14-billion Parañaque-Las Piñas Coastal Bay Project Land Reclamation project that planned to reclaim 635 hectares that is adjacent to the Las Piñas – Parañaque Critical Habitat and Eco-Tourism Area, with the Supreme Court issuing a Writ of Kalikasan against the project and early this year, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources cancelled its environment compliance certificate (ECC);


  • since last year to present, the Navotas Boulevard Business Park (NBBP) reclamation project, itemized as MB-11 in the NRP, covering 650-hectares is now threatening to displace around 20,000 fisherfolk and urban poor residents of Brgy. Tangos and Tanza in Navotas City;


WHEREAS, Pamalakaya – Pilipinas and Koalisyon Kontra Kumbersyon ng Manila Bay (KKK – Manila Bay) also claimed that the reclamation in Manila Bay as stated in the NRP, which also covers about 6,500 hectares in Cavite and 13,770 hectares in Bulacan, Pampanga and Bataan will definitely displace fisherfolk communities, while in the Visayas, it listed reclamation projects over 1,205 hectares of foreshore area in Iloilo and 1,280 hectares in Antique;


WHEREAS, while fisherfolk communities across the country are already battling systematic displacement due to land grabbing and conversion of fishing communities, the NRP or government reclamation plan is tantamount to violating their socio-economic and cultural rights, and the crafting of such plan, that obviously took in consideration and put utmost priority, the interest of the private sector or big businesses, and outright disregarded the standpoint of the fisherfolk, urban poor and other rural-based sectors, definitely make it as undemocratic and contrary to the interest of the majority;


WHEREAS, sideways with the social costs, environmental groups assert that reclamation projects destroy the marine natural environment, biodiversity and contribute to the intensified impact of flooding, storm surges and other natural phenomenon as established by the following:


  • reclamation filling materials are usually sourced;


  • reclamation projects have proven serious damage and destruction to marine ecosystems such as seabed, corals, and mangrove areas; and land reclamation alters the natural morphology of coastal areas, the condition marine ecosystems and the biodiversity in the water areas to be reclaimed;


  • known to create voluminous coastal sedimentation  that results to environmental problems beyond the target reclamation area;


  • may lead to the reduction of marine productivity as a result of its negative environmental effects such as reduction of fish catch and higher production cost for affected fisherfolk;


  • lead to decrease natural defense against storm surges, and flash floods as a result of loss of mangrove forest and seabed;





WHEREAS, hence, with the authors in continual consultation with Pamalakaya – Pilipinas, as well as environmental groups and other people’s organization, and former Anakpawis Representative “Ka Pando” Hicap, this resolution intend to communicate their broad demand for a nationwide moratorium on the reclamation projects until a satisfactory socio-economic impact assessment has been formulated, and for those projects which are indisputably detrimental to the marginalized sectors be totally abandoned;


NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED AS IT IS HEREBY RESOLVED, that the Committees on Aquaculture and Fisheries Resources, Natural Resources and Poverty Alleviation to conduct a joint inquiry, in aid of legislation, on the socio-economic and environmental impact of reclamation projects under the NRP or similar program of the present administration, as promoted by the PRA, due to the broad clamor of affected sectors, primarily the fisherfolk sector.



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Solve the agrarian problem, trigger rural dev’t, enact GARB – Anakpawis solon - Wed, 08/16/2017 - 04:40

Manila, Philippines – Prior the hearing on House Bill No. 555 – Genuine Agrarian Reform Bill (GARB) by the Committee on Agrarian Reform in congress, Anakpawis Party-list Representative Ariel “Ka Ayik” Casilao renewed his call for the enactment of the said bill and claimed that it is a step to resolving the centuries-old agrarian problem in the country and would lead to a genuine rural and development that would benefit the whole population.

“Haciendas and land monopoly reigned since Spanish colonial period in our history, but the rich hacienderos and big businesses are still holding on to their vast tracks of lands keeping the peasant class into indescribable poverty and misery, I challenge the present congress and President Duterte to break-out and decisively emancipate the majority of the population by enacting free distribution of land in the country,” Casilao said during a protest of farmers led by the Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP) at the south gate of congress compound.

Casilao said that land monopoly is the root cause of armed uprising of the peasants, primarily embodied by the New People’s Army (NPA) and the on-going “bungkalan” (cultivation) campaigns of legal-democratic organizations of farmers across the country. He also renewed his call for the government to resume the peace talks with the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP), and assert the immediate conclusion of the Comprehensive Agreement on Socio-Economic Reforms (CASER) and free distribution of land to poor farmers.

“The prospect of genuine agrarian reform in the country is either the president certifying GARB, with congress ratifying it, or with the NPA resolutely launching their agrarian revolution program confiscating lands from landlords and freely distributing them to poor farmers, we urge congress to fulfill the former,” Casilao ended. ###

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Youth party backs call to confirm DSWD Sec Judy Taguiwalo - Wed, 08/16/2017 - 04:29

Kabataan Partylist stands behind our DSWD Sec. Judy Taguiwalo and her legacy of maagap at mapagkalingang serbisyo, which she and her team have shown in the last year.

The Commission on Appointments (CA) has set the final confirmation hearing today for her after being bypassed twice earlier this year.

Sec. Judy has shown that provision of social services to the people is possible without the intervention of congressmen and senators, embezzlement of funds and patronage politics. Her leadership has blazed a historic path in forging an agreement to support the rehabilitation of communities, especially those of Lumads, affected by militarization. Her uncompromising stances on martial law, women’s rights, and the Duterte regime’s fascist and anti-people policies show her allegiance to the people and not to the government.

We condemn threats from the CA, Congress and Senate to push for her rejection. Such will only benefit the US imperialists, the reactionary elite and big businesses, who are desperately holding on to the status quo to milk out whatever they still can from the labor exploited and oppressed masses.

In their desperation to find loopholes on Sec. Judy’s appointment, for which they can find none, they choose to smear on her name instead through red-tagging and personal attacks on her gender and political affiliation. No amount of mudslinging, however, has tainted her legacy of service to the people.

Our solons in the CA should confirm Sec. Judy, lest they expose their vested interest in maintaining the decades-old corrupt status quo. The President should not sit idly by and support the confirmation of Sec. Judy, lest he confirm himself as the puppet of US and reactionary interests instead.

Whatever the outcome, the youth and Filipino people know that Sec. Judy and the other progressive secretaries will remain with them, as they intensify their struggle for free education, right to social services, national industrialization, genuine agrarian reform, and national democratic aspirations which the people have long fought for. ###

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Solon scores cuts, lump sum in DOH 2018 budget - Tue, 08/15/2017 - 02:43
PRESS RELEASE 15 August 2017 Vital programs of the Department of Health in 2018 will suffer fund cuts of up to 99.55%, in the face of the continuing practice of lump sum budgeting, said ACT Teachers Rep. Antonio L. Tinio at the hearing for the DOH budget on Monday. Tinio noted that aside from the reduction of 28.45% in the maintenance and other operating expenses for the 66 regional and special hospitals nationwide, the proposed budget contains drastic cuts in the MOOE of several vital programs.  These include Epidemiology and disease surveillance (from ...
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Gov’t has large budget for “death and destruction,” little to public health – Anakpawis solon - Mon, 08/14/2017 - 09:03

Manila, Philippines – Anakpawis Party-list Representative Ariel “Ka Ayik” Casilao today assailed the Department of National Defense (DND) for its big 2018 budget, while public hospitals, 12 Department of Health (DOH) facilities and 54 Regional Medical Centers, across the country were slashed of its Maintenance and Other Operating Expenses (MOOE) budget by near P1.5 billion.

DND proposed budget is at P145 billion, with on top of it is the P25 billion for the Armed Forces of the Philippines Modernization Program. The Philippine Army is allotted with P63.7 billion. Civilian Armed Forces Geographical Unit (CAFGU) is with P3.4 billion.

“It is appearing that the 2018 budget is more for death and destruction, than preserving and improving the lives of the people, and we had a glimpse of that on how the AFP destroyed Marawi City and launched aerial strikes on farmer communities in Mindanao,” Casilao said in a statement.

Casilao quoted the data from the Health Alliance for Democracy (HEAD) that the government is only spending P2.58 for each Filipino and only a minority 43% of the total communities in the country have access to a health facility. To worsen, facilities are ill-maintained and lacking in much-needed equipment due to budget limitations. In addition, Commission on Audit (COA) revealed that almost 3,000 barangays out of 42,000 have no health centers.

“This government has wasted about P3 billion for the destruction of Marawi City, pushing for the P100,000 bounty system against the New People’s Army, but stingy to the people’s needs, this tenet of governance will definitely trigger mass resentment, especially among the poor and marginalized,” Casilao said.

The lawmaker also slammed the big budget for PhilHealth at P53.1 billion and claimed that it would only go straight to private hospitals as giant profits. In 2016, it was allocated with P43.8 billion.

“The life-blood of private hospitals actually come from people’s contribution and taxpayers’, when the budget could be diverted into expansion of public health facilities and their effective operations for the benefit of the people,” Casilao said.

Casilao asserted that they are pushing to reduce the funding for the government’s war machine, including the P3.4 billion CAFGU budget and to fully fund social services, such as public health to improve the state of living condition of the people. ###

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Solon demands arrest of “terrorist” militiaman, crossing out of P3.4 billion CAFGU budget - Mon, 08/14/2017 - 03:16

Manila, Philippines – Anakpawis Party-list Representative Ariel “Ka Ayik” Casilao joined the lumad communities in Mindanao on their call for the immediate arrest of Alde “Butsoy” Salusad, leader of the New Indigenous Peoples’ Army (NIPAR) para-military group, under the command of the 8th Infantry Battalion of the Philippine Army, deployed in Bukidnon province.

Salusad is wanted for murders of Abundio Mantugohon (January 11, 2012), Datu Erning Mantugohon (October 10, 2012), Mabini “Toto” Manobia and Zaldy Ambayot (October 17, 2013), Datu Jimmy Liguyon (March 5, 2012) and 6-month pregnant woman Makenet Gayoran (July 30, 2016). He had standing warrants since 2012 but was able to remain free, and recently he surfaced posing as a surrenderee member of the New People’s Army (NPA).

“Salusad is a real terrorist as he, with his group and backing of the military, is sowing terror on lumad communities, triggering massive evacuation and displacement, his recent surfacing is an insult to the rule of law and epitomizes impunity,” Casilao said in a statement.

Casilao added that it is worse that with the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) being funded by the taxpayers’ money that eventually supplies and arms this para-military groups to commit abuses against the people. The lawmaker is keeping an eye to the P3.4 billion budget for the Civilian Armed Forces Geographical Unit (Cafgu) under the Philippine Army’s and will demand its crossing out of the 2018 budget during the budget hearing of the Department of National Defense in congress.

“I call on freedom-loving Filipinos to support the lumad people’s demand to arrest Salusad and ridding out of the CAFGU budget that funds state-sponsored terrorism against the people,” Casilao called. ###

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Solon hits massive budget cut on DSWD 2018 capital outlay - Mon, 08/14/2017 - 02:48
PRESS RELEASE 14 August 2018 ACT Teachers Representative Antonio Tinio opposed the budget cut of about 90% on the Department of Social Welfare and Development’s (DSWD) capital outlay (CO) during the hearing Wednesday on the its 2018 budget. “This massive budget cut of almost 90% in the CO will greatly affect the direct services offered by the DSWD to vulnerable sectors such as senior citizens, children, persons with disability, women, solo parents, homeless families, and disaster victims.  The CO which the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) included in the proposed budget was ...
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CHED budget examined: Cuts in 43 SUCs, P44B expected income questioned - Thu, 08/10/2017 - 08:53

Kabataan Partylist Rep. Sarah Elago today questioned the continued underfunding and budget cuts that hound the 114 state universities and colleges (SUCs) in the country, as deliberations on the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) budget for 2018 start today.

“Despite the increase in budget from PhP58.9 billion to PhP61.4 billion, 43 SUCs are set to incur net budget decreases for 2018. 23 SUCs will suffer cuts in their Personal Service (PS) budget, while 50 will have cuts in their Maintenance and Operating Expenses (MOOE) budget and 49 have cuts in their Capital Outlay (CO) budget. In fact, the Philippine State College of Aeronautics has zero budget for CO for 2018,” the youth solon explained.

The youth solon also added how SUCs are expected to keep earning internal income. “Kapansin-pansin ang walang patid na pagtaas ng internally generated income ng mga pamantasan at kolehiyo mula 2010 hanggang 2016,” Elago said.

According to the 2018 Budget of Expenditures and Sources of Financing, the DBM expects SUCs to earn P44.7 from their internal income for 2018. Out of this, P13.2 billion is expected to come from tuition collection.

Sa pagbuo ng datos para sa inaasahang internal na kita, malinaw na hindi isinaalang-alang ang noo’y panukalang batas para sa libreng edukasyon sa kolehiyo. Sa pagkapasa ng batas na nagbabawal sa pagkolekta ng matrikula at iba pang bayarin mula sa mga estudyante, paano binabalak abutin ngayon ang inaasahang napakalaking internal na kitang ito? Mayroon bang bagong iskema o polisiyang ipapatupad upang pataasin ang internal na kita ng SUCs?,” Elago asked.

The youth solon expressed the youth’s vigilance, and challenged CHED to ensure that it will not renege on the youth’s clamor as expressed by the initial victory in having a free education bill signed into law.

Ang pagkapasa ng batas na nagbabawal sa pagkolekta ng matrikula at iba pang bayarin sa mga pampublikong pamantasan at kolehiyo ay isang malaking tagumpay para sa mga estudyante at kabataan. Naghatid ito ng panibagong pag-asa at nagbukas ng napakalaking oportunidad lalo na sa mga estudyante at kabataang nagdarahop.”

Sa gitna ng dikta ng mga taong nagtuturing sa edukasyon bilang isang kalakal at hindi isang karapatan, mahalaga ang papel na dapat gampanan ng CHED upang protektahan at pagsilbihan ang interes ng mga estudyante at sambayanan. Tandaan natin na ang tunay na sukatan ng tagumpay sa pagpapatupad ng polisiya sa badyet ay hindi ang laki ng nalikom na kita ng isang institusyon kundi ang lawak at kalidad ng naipaabot nitong serbisyo sa mamamayan. Ang edukasyon ay serbisyo, hindi negosyo,” Elago ended. ###

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Youth party slams US aggression thru ‘assistance’, possible airstrikes - Thu, 08/10/2017 - 08:39

Kabataan Partylist condemns today the US imperialist government for its horrid proposal to help in the airstrikes against alleged ISIS targets in Marawi City and Mindanao, decrying that it lays the pretext for continued aggression in the Philippines.

“The US must be desperate enough to resume its intervention and aggression in our country’s affairs, especially as it’s starting to compete with neighbor countries such as China and Russia, for control of the Asia-Pacific,” Kabataan partylist Rep. Sarah Elago said.

According to reports, the Pentagon and other US state agencies have announced plans to possibly conduct airstrikes as part of “collective self-defense,” as well as to help in intelligence and technical assistance regarding the terrorist conflict in Mindanao. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson divulged, during his visit on Monday, that the US has provided Cessna aircrafts and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) or drones as part of said assistance.

“Their sudden initiative further exposes their intent and interest in prolonging martial law, as well as the agony of our Moro and Lumad brothers. The continued rule of the US-trained AFP has only bred harassment, attacks, and even killings on unsuspecting citizens. Daily, and even hourly, airstrikes, with constant threats of military terror, have resulted in mass evacuations of communities and schools,” Elago explained.

“Duterte’s threat to bomb Lumad schools will only serve to hype them up further, and who knows, such assistance will drag these schools into the crisis;” Elago added.

Elago further explained that Duterte’s relations with the US seems to be slowly gaining ground.

“Duterte’s anti-US pronouncements hasn’t really translated into any state policy, and even worse, he is silent with The US government is quick to laugh off his tirades on human rights because practically, the US has maintained its hegemony in the area. The annual Balikatan exercises remain under EDCA, and none of their bases have been dissolved,” Elago said.

The party calls on the youth and the people to stand against the continued aggression of the US and the Duterte regime.

“We should hold the them accountable for the continued violations and attacks against the people. These attacks are only a sign that either no significant change will come, or that change is actually for the worse. The march of the youth for change, for national sovereignty, patrimony, and the right to self-determination remain,” Elago concluded. ###


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Not a question of funds, but of priorities: Youth party slams Duterte’s ‘ewan ko’ on free educ law, decries neoliberal policies - Wed, 08/09/2017 - 04:55

“Duterte has just exposed his inutility. He is desperately trying to placate the angry youth by signing the bill, and has no real regard for the welfare of the youth. After all, isn’t he the same president that commanded to bomb Lumad schools in Mindanao?”

This is Kabataan Partylist’s response to Duterte’s recent statement saying that he ‘does not know’ where to source the funds for the recently signed free education law.

“It’s not a question of funds, but rather of priorities,” Kabataan Partylist Rep. Sarah Elago said.

“Funds for implementing and funding free education are easily allocatable. But government, unfortunately, has its sights on something else: profiteering under the US imperialist neoliberal framework in education,” Elago explained.

“For instance, the economic trio of NEDA-DBM-DoF are quick to react that ‘there are no funds for free education,’ and that billions are needed Meanwhile, there is a ballooning budget alloted for debt servicing and militarization, as well as trillions in spending for infrastructure.”

“Foreign debts in the past years have always been the leeway to introduce neoliberal policies in our educational system and other basic social services. Neoliberalism has been the mastermind behind intense privatization and deregulation of supposedly public goods. For instance, the IMF-World Bank, one of the most massive sources of foreign debt in the past years, has been pushing for interventionist policies in education, most notably the Education Act of 1982,” Elago explained.

The youth party calls on the youth and the Filipino people to continue the fight for free education, and strengthen the call to junk the Education Act of 1982 and all neoliberal policies in education, and to end all forms of tuition and other fees collection.

“The government should halt the decades-old order of profiteering and privatization of basic services such as education, lest the ‘free tuition law’ end up as a token reform. As it seems, the US-Duterte regime is busy crying drugs for supposedly destroying the youth, while being insincere in addressing the high costs of education. The youth are, indeed, strong, and will march in their thousands to call for a nationalist, scientific and mass-oriented education that is mandated as a right,” Elago concluded. ###

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Youth party slams approval of mandatory drug testing, ‘Tokhang’ invasion in college schools - Wed, 08/09/2017 - 04:50

“An irony of ironies: schools are now allowed to ‘impose’ Tokhang in the spirit of ‘academic freedom.’”

This is how Kabataan Partylist described the Commission on Higher Education’s (CHED) recent memorandum allowing mandatory drug testing as a requirement for admission and retention in higher education institutions (HEIs), in support of the US-Duterte regime’s “war on drugs.”

“CHED must have heavily distorted ‘academic freedom’ to mean freedom for state agents to impose fascism and intervene in schools, as well as freedom for schools to deny students’ right to education on the basis of drug test results,” Kabataan Partylist Rep. Sarah Elago added.

“This will further legitimate Tokhang-style executions and arrests in schools, especially among the youth. CHED’s support on the ‘war on drugs’ will give license to militarization and police invasion in schools.”

“Not so long ago, peasant leaders and civilians have been arrested and even killed under the ‘drugs’ bogey. Who is to say the same won’t happen to students, student leaders notwithstanding?,” Elago explained.

“This invasion of schools is also to add financial burdens to the students and their parents, as testing fees could possibly mean another round of other school fees,” Elago added.

The youth party calls on the Filipino students and youth to hold the US-Duterte regime accountable for its continued all-out offensives against the students.

“If the government is serious on eradicating the drug epidemic, it should stop its crazy rampage on drug users, focus on rehabilitation, and actually address the roots of poverty and crime.”

“Rather than denying students of the right to education based on drug use, presumed or otherwise, it should hold on its pledge to allow free education in SUCs and eventually in all schools, and do away with neoliberal policies that keep social services inaccessible to the majority of the poor,” Elago said.

“Otherwise, the students are ready to fight and condemn the creeping fascism in schools. The youth are more than ever willing to fight the fascist state and promote a nationalist, scientific and mass-oriented education to address the drug onslaught,” Elago concluded. ###

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