Manila

Dateline Manila

Philippines: Urban poor resist fresh demolitions

The Manila Seedling Bank, a seven hectare area of small market gardens and big and small shops selling plants, was a rare green space among the traffic jams, shopping malls and slums on the intersection of Quezon and Edsa Avenues in Quezon City, Metro Manila.

It was also home to a community of hundreds of smallholding horticulturalists and their families. That was until January 20.

Philippines: Urban poor fight for their land (with photos)

Residents in the urban poor settlement of San Dionisio in Barangay Cupang, Muntinlupa in Metro Manila, were woken on January 15 by a heavily armed police SWAT team.

Brandishing a local government order that referred to an address in a different barangay (neighbourhood), authorities overrode objections of residents and started tearing down their homes.

Philippines: Protests reject new 'sin tax'

The People’s Coalition Against Regressive Taxation held a 4000-strong blockade of the upmarket Manila Shangri-La Hotel from December 5 to 6. The Bicameral Conference Committee, representing the upper and lower houses of the Philippines parliament, were inside debated the Sin Tax Bill, which will double the prices of cigarettes and alcohol.

Workers and farmers were represented in the blockade, whose ranks were drawn predominantly from the urban poor.

Philippines: Leftists launch election campaign to take on 'trapos'

At a one-day assembly of more than 500 delegates on November 28, the militant socialist Party of the Labouring Masses (PLM) introduced its candidates for national elections scheduled for May 13 next year.

The PLM, which now holds positions in several Barangay (neighbourhood) councils, is running 20 candidates for municipal councillor, vice-mayor, mayor and Congress. They include candidates in Negros and Iligan, in the Philippine archipelago’s south. Most candidates, however, are in Metro Manila or the semi-urban provinces surrounding the capital: Cavite, Rizal, Bulacan and Laguna.

Philippines: Thousands take to streets for Bonifacio Day

A 1500-strong march wound its way through Manila to mark Bonifacio Day on November 30.

The day marks the birthday of 19th century Filipino independence leader Andres Bonifacio, known as “the Great Plebian” due to his humble origins and support for the poor. Bonifacio died at the hands of pro-elite rivals in the independence movement.

The march was organised by the BMP trade union confederation, the Party of the Labouring Masses (PLM), the peasants’ and rural workers’ organisation AMA, the KPML organisation of the urban poor and the SANLAKAS democratic front.

Philippines: Socialist party officially recognised as party of the marginalised

The petition for certification of Party of the Labouring Masses (PLM) as a national political party was approved by the Commission on Elections in September. With this approval, the fight for a national political party representing the marginalised sectors has escalated to new heights.

This is a confirmation of the PLM’s three-and-a-half years of existence and its expansion as a political party with a mass constituency and grassroots chapter-formations.

GREEN LEFT TV: Class and climate catastrophe in the Philippines




Sonny Melencio, chairperson of the Partido Lakas ng Masa, reflects on the politics of class and catastrophic climate change in the wake of the 2012 Manila floods.



GREEN LEFT TV: Protests hit Philippines - Australia military deal

Australian mining companies, already ravaging the traditional land of Indigenous peoples in the Philippines, are now pushing for ratification of a military agreement that would allow Australian troops to enter the Philippines for "combined training, exercises, or other activities mutually approved by the Parties".

Protests broke out in Manila on June 6, 2012 as the Philippines Senate was deliberating the ratification of this controversial 'visiting forces' military pact with the Australian government, signed by the disgraced former President Gloria Arroyo in 2007.

Philippines: Airline workers fight contract labour

Members of the Philippines Air Lines Employees Association (PALEA) have been engaged in three weeks of pickets at the Philippines Airlines (PAL) terminal at Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila.

About 2600 ground crew have fought against forced contractualisation — the replacement of permanent, secure jobs with contract labour.

PALEA president Gerry Rivera told Green Left Weekly the dispute had its origins in 2009 when PAL management declared their intention to outsource the roles of the 2600 ground crew.

Philippines: Muslims protest Libya bombing

On March 25, much of the community in Maharlika Village in Manila turned out after Friday prayers to protest against the Western powers’ military attacks against Libya.

Maharlika Village is a predominantly Moro community in Taguig City, in the south-east of Metro Manila. The protest was organised by the local council, community leaders, religious leaders from the community’s 16 mosques, the Bangsamoro Solidarity Movement and the Anak Mindanao Party (Amin).

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