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News :: Human Rights : International : Labor : Politics : Social Welfare
PHILIPPINES: Akbayan calls people to enforce own hold departure order for Arroyo
16 Nov 2011
Akbayan Party today called on the public to enforce their own hold departure order to prevent former president Gloria Macapagal Arroyo from "evading justice."
Akbayan Spokesperson Risa Hontiveros called on the public to express their outrage against the eight Supreme Court justices who granted a temporary restraining order on the watch list orders issued against the Arroyos by the Department of Justice.

"I guess it's all up to the people to enforce its own 'hold departure order' against the Arroyos. As such, we call on the public to mount political actions and other mobilizations near major airports and seaports to see to it that the Arroyos are prevented to escape accountability for their crimes."

Akbayan Representative Walden Bello expressed extreme dissatisfaction with the high court's decision. He called the decision as "debilitating in the efforts to curb corruption".

"The eight Supreme Court justices may be of the opinion that the Arroyos can leave the country, but for the Filipino people, Arroyo shouldn't be given the privilege of just evading her crimes very easily. We have to keep watch against their escape masked as medical treatment abroad."

SC requirement for Arroyos to report to embassies "useless"

Another Akbayan lawmaker also called the requirement of the Supreme Court that the Arroyos report to the Philippine embassies of their respective destination as "practically useless.

"Whether or not they even report to our embassies is inconsequential since they would already have been outside the country," Rep. Kaka Bag-ao said.

Hontiveros said that "now is the time that we must stand in indignation against this decision.

"We've done it before in toppling a brutal dictatorship, now we must use it to hold the Arroyos accountable for her crimes. Now, it seems, justice lies in the collective action of our people."

PHILIPPINES: It’s the 99%, not Gloria, who are the real victims of injustice in this country

By Labor Party - Philippines

The Partido ng Mangagawa (PM) today said it is the 99% and not former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo who are the real victims of tyranny and injustice in this country. Members of PM and the Philippine Airlines Employees’ Association (PALEA) held a 2:00 p.m. rally at the Our Lady of the Airways Parish at the corner of Sucat Road and MIA Road to air their sentiments on the alleged escape of the Arroyos.

Earlier today the groups also joined running priest Fr. Robert Reyes in a picket at the Supreme Court, a day after the high tribunal allowed the former President, who is facing criminal charges, to seek medical treatment abroad. They brought placards which read: “Itlog ni Topacio ibigay kay PNoy para tumindig vs Lucio Tan,” “Panagutin si GMA sa pagnanakaw, pandaraya at pagsisinungaling. Panagutin si PNoy sa pang-aapi sa manggagawa,” “Wag patakasin si GMA sa pagkakasala sa bayan. Wag patakasin si PNoy sa pagkakasala sa manggagawa ng PAL.”

“Gloria was merely banned from leaving the country for a while, whereas thousands of PAL workers and several millions of contractuals, unemployed and underemployed out there are being denied the right to live decent lives,” stated PALEA president and PM vice chair Gerry Rivera.

Renato Magtubo, PM national chair, agreed with the position of DoJ Secretary Leila De Lima in invoking a judicial process available to all, in this case a motion for reconsideration, to take its course before Gloria is finally allowed to travel and seek medical treatment abroad. He said that “The Pinoy Bonnie and Clyde should not be allowed to escape from facing cases of stealing, cheating and lying. They will not get any sympathy from oppressed workers in their attempt to fly out of the country and out of reach of justice.”

“As to PAL’s implementation of its outsourcing plan we stand by our position that outsourcing should not be implemented while the case remains pending before the Court of Appeals,” said Rivera.

Unfortunately thousands of PAL workers were thrown out of work since October 1, 2011 when De Lima’s boss, President Benigno Aquino, allowed Lucio Tan to proceed in firing 2,600 its regular employees and outsource their jobs to third party service providers in clear violation of the Constitution, the Labor Code and international conventions.

The only difference between the two cases, Magtubo added, is that PAL’s outsourcing was motivated by corporate greed while Gloria’s bid was a desperate attempt to escape looming imprisonment.

“Indeed, the country’s justice system is more ill than the ailing Gloria,” concluded Magtubo.

This work is in the public domain
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