Fwd (GLW): PHILIPPINES: Thousands protest war, globalisation

Alan Bradley abradley1 at bigpond.com
Sun Dec 9 06:10:41 MST 2001


The following article appears in the current issue of Green Left Weekly
(http://www.greenleft.org.au):

PHILIPPINES: Thousands protest war, globalisation
BY SUSAN PRICE

MANILA - November 30 - Bonifacio Day, and this year the 129th birthday of
one of the Philippines' national proletarian heroes - became a day and night
of mobilisation and protest by radical forces against the government of
President Gloria Makapagal Arroyo and the US "war on terrorism".

Almost 20,000 protesters from radical labour unions, urban poor groups, farm
labourers movements and student organisations rallied in Manila and four
provincial areas. They demanded an end to corruption, the right to a living
wage, an end to neo-liberal globalisation, a peaceful solution to the
struggle in the southern Mindanao province and a cessation of the US "war on
terrorism".

Mass organisations including Sanlakas, BMP (Solidarity of Filipino Workers),
KPML (Congress of Unity of the Urban Poor), Zoto (Zone One Tondo
Organisation of the urban poor), peasant organisations as well as several
unions were present, including the Gelmart Labour Union, which is one of the
BMP's largest affiliated garment unions with 90% women members. Political
organisations such as the SPP (Socialist Party of Labour) and the PMP
(Philippines Workers Party) also mobilised their forces for the
demonstration.

Corruption scandals involving members of the ruling elite and millions of
pesos are rife, even reaching as far as Mike Arroyo, the president's
husband. These scandals have the potential to destabilise Arroyo's
government.

According to Wilson Fortaleza, the national president of Sanlakas, "GMA
might even end up more corrupt than Erap [Estrada, the former president] as
bigger scams and scandals are being exposed left and right against her 10
month-old administration."

<the remainder of the article can be found at:
http://www.greenleft.org.au/current/475p13.htm >


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