Migrante-Canada call to support Zero Remittance Day global action
Migrante-Canada is calling on all of its members and friends to support Migrante International’s Global Action, Zero Remittance Day on September 19 as a condemnation to the plunder of their remittances by Philippine officials and the snail-paced prosecution of the Aquino government to bring them to justice.
Migrante-Canada called as assault to migrants’ rights and welfare the Aquino government’s continued special treatment to Janet Napoles, the alleged operator of the massive pork barrel scam, the lip-service discontinuation of pork barrel fund and the slow prosecution of officials involving 28 legislators from Congress, including 5 senators. Reportedly, some P10 billion money from the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) also known as pork barrel fund, was re-channeled to “ghost projects” and bogus non-government organizations.
Meanwhile the more than 2,2 million OFWs deployed globally remain poorly serviced with an allotment of only 0.17% of the annual budget since Aquino took seat. This translates to only P260 per capita spending for every OFW yearly. This despite the billions of dollars cash remittances, $21 billion in 2012, from OFWs that sustain the country’s Gross Domestic Product accounting for 15%.
Filipino migrants in Canada have had their fair share of dollar remittances in years. Their remittances comprised 4.3% of the total $21 billion in 2012, or $903 million. Canada belonged to the top 6 in terms of source countries for dollar remittances. They too, numbering more than 600,000 as of 2011, are left to fit to the little to no services by the Philippine government, as evidenced by limited access to the Philippine consulate in Vancouver and Toronto, and the Philippine Embassy in Ottawa.
The Aquino government is paying lip-service when it said that it would abolish the pork barrel fund, when in fact it remains a part of the 2014 budget amounting to P25.2 billion. It remains deaf in calls to rechannel the fund to improve much-needed social services including services to OFWs in distress, languishing in jail or death-sentenced and those needing repatriation. Moreover, Aquino himself is holding on tight to his own pork barrel, the Presidential Social Assistance Fund, worth P1billion annually.
Migrante-Canada is calling all of its members, supporters and all Filipino workers in Canada to join the thousands of OFWs worldwide who have vowed to deliver a blow to the Aquino government on Zero Remittance Day.
SCRAP THE PORK BARREL! RECHANNEL THE FUNDS TO SERVICES TO MIGRANT WORKERS!