I’m happy to report that our planned synchronized protest action on November 9 is a go!
We have confirmed action in the following locations outside of the Philippines:
2) San Francisco
I’m still waiting for confirmations from other locations. If you’re located in the cities mentioned above and would like to link up, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or text me at 0920-961-5610 so I can link you up with the team leader.
You don’t really have to wait for somebody to organize in your location. If you have a group of at least 10 people – it could be your regular golf or tennis buddies, your trade organization, your high school/college alumni association, etc. – you can simply agree to meet on Friday, proceed to the Philippine Embassy/consular office wearing black, and submit a manifesto. I have attached a draft manifesto which you can freely edit.
Please notify us if you plan to organize your own activity. Email me or text me so we can request media to try and cover your activity if they have presence or an affiliate in your location. Of course, you can take photos /videos on your own and upload it to youtube or email to us so we can post it in our web/blogsite.
Meanwhile, we’re finalizing preparations for our own protest action here in Makati and in other major cities in the Philippines. I will post details of these in the next update.
I must reiterate how important it is to stand up and be counted at this time. Sobra na ang panggagagong ginagawa sa mamayang Pilipino. And if we do not add our voices to the brewing outrage, we will one day wake up under a martial law regime with a new charter that will overextend GMA’s stay in power. Remember Marcos’ martial law and the rubber-stamp Batasang Pambansa? Well… we’re almost there.
It’s up to each and every one of us to prevent this from happening.
Manifesto for the International Day of Protest Kontra sa Panggagago
An Urgent Appeal to President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo
We, Filipinos residing in ________________________________, are scandalized by the indecent haste with which President Arroyo granted executive clemency to former president Joseph “Erap” Estrada. It came at a time that we were celebrating the fact that our judicial system could actually work, that we were able to exact accountability from the highest official of the land and convict him of the crime of plunder. The untimely pardon, which came barely 5 weeks after conviction, set aside the decision made by our courts and sends the wrong message to our people, “It’s all right to plunder. All you have to do is make a deal with the ruling power.”
We do not see this leading to national healing as the Palace would like us to believe. Instead, it has opened up old wounds that can only lead to further divisiveness amongst our people.
Neither do we see this as a sincere effort at reconciliation. We believe that this is part of a ploy to deflect attention from the ongoing ZTE scandal and palace payoffs. It merely reflects the culture of transactional politics that has led our country to moral bankruptcy.
We are alarmed at the revelations made during the Senate hearings that seem to indicate the involvement of the First Gentleman in the ZTE deal as well as apparently confirm GMA’s intimate knowledge of the bribery attempt by Benjamin Abalos on Romulo Neri. This administration does not seem inclined to bring erring officials to justice or prevent an anomalous transaction from being consummated. On the contrary, GMA allegedly instructed Neri to fast-track the approval of the National Broadband Network project with ZTE.
We are even more alarmed at ostensibly crude attempts to cover up allegations of bribery inside the very walls of Malacanang with even more bribery.
First, a weak impeachment complaint is filed, one that is doomed to fail and intended only to immunize GMA from further impeachment for another year. In this connection, the Deputy Secretary General of KAMPI – the President’s own party, allegedly offers a P2.0M bribe to Cong. Crispin Beltran to endorse the complaint.
Then, Congressmen and Governors are invited to a meeting at Malacanang, presumably to conduct a loyalty check and support the trashing of the impeachment complaint. Attendees are openly given bags with bundles of cash – as much as P500K each, as “gifts”. And when the “gift-giving” is exposed, the League of Provinces of the Philippines belatedly owns up to giving the cash, a ploy eerily similar to Iggy Arroyo owning up to the Jose Pidal account of the First Gentleman.
To make matters even worse, the Palace actually believes we will buy their excuses and cover up stories. Hindi naman siguro ganyan kagago ang mamamayang Pilipino.
We decry the blatant and brazen impunity with which GMA, her Cabinet officials, her allies in Congress and local government have lied to the people. In her desperate attempt to cling to power, she has lost all moral scruples.
We declare our loss of confidence in her leadership, and we appeal to her that if there is any sense of decency and patriotism left in her heart, that she should make the supreme sacrifice by resigning now. We believe that this is the only way that healing can truly begin and pave the way for moral reformation for our nation.
We submit this appeal with urgency, before vested interests in our society exploit the situation and lead us to unchartered and bloody modes of regime change.
Tama na! Sobra na! Hindi na kami magpapagago!