Progressive Youth Groups’ Statement Against GMA’s Escape

17 11 2011

We, the Filipino Youth, condemn the brazen acts of Mrs. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo to evade culpability for her crimes. The recent temporary restraining order (TRO) granted by eight justices of the Supreme Court (SC) is a clear tailor-fit court order to favor Arroyo. The unusually speedy process to grant the TRO and even the release of the TRO to Arroyo’s lawyers beyond office hours were all indicative of the leverage granted to Arroyo.

What is even more abhorrent is the cavalier use of the words “rights” and “democracy” to justify her escape from the country and that any attempt to prevent her from doing so would constitute a violation of those two cherished words. It seems that Arroyo wishes to taunt her victims, the Filipino public, by using the very rights they deprived from others to escape accountability.

Arroyo deserves no compassion from the Filipino public. First, her situation is not dire. The statement of Department of Health Secretary Enrique Ona confirms that there are sufficient medical facilities and skilled medical experts to treat her ailment. Moreover, Dr. Leo Olarte of the Philippine Medical Association has opined that Mrs. Arroyo is on her way to recovery.

Second, she has the sufficient resources to pay for the best facilities and doctors in the country. Unlike millions of Filipinos, she has a team of doctors to attend to her medical needs and has foreign medical experts abroad to treat her common illness.

Third, and most important, the nine years of her presidency were marked by much grave abuse of rights and democracy. Now, Arroyo’s camp speaks of rights but during her presidency, human rights violations against media practitioners, political activists, and ordinary citizens were rampant.

Now, they speak of democracy when during her term, she orchestrated massive cheating during the 2004 and 2007 elections. This huge irony seems to escape them. No amount of disastrous acting or theatrics to garner sympathy can whitewash the gross acts of corruption, electoral sabotage, plunder, and impunity she and her cohorts committed.

We challenge the eight justices of the Supreme Court to resign should Arroyo not return to the country as she promised. We believe that those who aided Arroyo in her attempt to escape should not go scot-free and wash their hands.

We also call on the public to express their indignation against Arroyo’s attempt to flee the country. We must never take this sitting down. We cannot allow those who have robbed us of our rights to use the same rights to escape accountability.

No to GMA’s escape!

Student Council Alliance of the Philippines | Akbayan! Youth | Movement for the Advancement of Student Power

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Wet and ‘horny’ for the RH Bill

15 11 2011

Students call for Congress vote on RH; hold BUSINA campaign

Student council and student political party leaders brave the rainshower for RH

The heavy rainfall didn’t stop these student councils and student political parties from Ateneo de Manila University, De La Salle University, University of the Philippines-Diliman, University of the East and Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Muntinlupa from expressing their support for the Reproductive Health Bill as Congress resumes November 14, 2011.

Held in front of the Ateneo, a Catholic university, the students were joined by Akbayan! Youth and the Youth Consortium for Reproductive Health in seeking to emphasize the strong support the RH Bill enjoys from the student sector.

Student Council Alliance of the Philippines National Spokesperson JC Tejano argued that the youth should be informed of such an important issue of human sexuality and reproductive health.

Alyansang TAPAT sa Lasallista Chairperson Roby Camagong mentioned that the RH Bill enjoys tremendous nationwide support and cuts across age and economic groups and must therefore be given urgent action by Congress.

Akbayan! Youth National Council Member Ninian Sumadia also challenged anti-RH groups to stop their delaying tactics and support the call for having a vote on the measure within the year.

(photo courtesy of Mark Escay, Alyansang TAPAT sa Lasallista)