Philippines

10 Years of The VFA

By Roland Simbulan Center for People Empowerment in Governance (CENPEG) MANILA — The presence of heavily armed U.S. soldiers even in the remote areas of the Philippine countryside is now becoming a normal part of the local scenery. As we mark the ten years (1999-2009) of the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA), ratified by the Philippine 

Posted 10 years ago by

‘Tyranny of Numbers’

Constituent Assembly for Cha-Cha OK’d in Congress Opposition congressmen tried to block the approval of House Resolution 1109 that would create a Constituent Assembly, with some valiantly opposing the apparent railroading of the measure. But the sheer number of President Arroyo’s allies was overwhelming. (Read story…)

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After Con-Ass, a Cha-Cha Free-for-All

Wednesday’s railroading of HR 1109 was met with indignation by Filipinos, many of whom took to the streets despite the rain to denounce the legislators who approved the resolution. Several groups critical of the Arroyo regime also met yesterday to plan their moves in the days ahead. A number of protest rallies have been scheduled 

Posted 10 years ago by

Soldiers ‘Abducted, Tortured’ Fil-Am Activist

“I thought I was going to die there and then,” Melissa Roxas recounts her ordeal. “They held my feet and my hands down and doubled-up plastic bags were pulled down on my head and face and closed on my neck and I started to suffocate and I could not breathe anymore and I was seeing 

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Satur Ocampo: A Tribute and a Promise

MANILA — It was a rare occasion that brought together some of the Philippines’s well-heeled and multitudes of the unshod, activists young and old, ex-activists and non-activists. For those who had not had the good fortune of hearing about the man even in this age of information technology, the event served as more than a 

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Another ‘Travesty’ as Congress Votes to Extend Life of Failed CARP

The landlord-dominated Congress, led by the relatives of President Arroyo, voted Wednesday night to add five more years to the implementation of a 20-year-old agrarian-reform program that has failed to uplift the lives of peasants and farmers in the Philippines. And critics say the new proposed law is even worse than the original. (Read story…)

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Benjie Oliveros | Cha-Cha: A Desperate Political Gamble

Perhaps the regime figured that enabling Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo to extend her immunity by allowing her to run as representative of her district and then become prime minister is less costly politically — with less chances as well of inviting an upheaval — than postponing the 2010 elections or declaring martial law, without completely closing its 

Posted 10 years ago by

The launch of Pagbabago!

The founding assembly of the Pagbabago! People’s Movement for Change became the unintended launching pad for self-declared presidential wannabe, Paquito Yu, Paq for short. Actually, he is the group’s satirical mascot, the amalgamation of all that the people find laughable, irritating and downright pathetic in Philippine traditional politics and the cast of characters it breeds. 

Posted 10 years ago by

Who Rules America?

What do you suppose it is like to be elected president of the United States only to find that your power is restricted to the service of powerful interest groups? A president who does a good job for the ruling interest groups is paid off with remunerative corporate directorships, outrageous speaking fees, and a lucrative 

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Aurelio Tolentino and His Play Kahapon, Ngayon, at Bukas

Not all Filipinos are aware of the historical importance of May 14. On May 14, 1903, Aurelio Tolentino (October 13, 1867-July 3, 1915), a Pampango playwright, poet, essayist, educator, novelist and public servant was arrested because of his play, Kahapon, Ngayon at Bukas (Larawan ng Inang Bayan). (Read story…)

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