Ang Bayan
September 21, 2020

Protests for human rights, against budget cuts and dictatorship

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Various sectoral groups launched successive street and online protests in the past few weeks.

Youth groups staged a picket in front of the Congress in Quezon City in conjuction with the budget hearing on education last September 16. This was followed by a mobilization by the urban poor who asserted their right to emergency aid in conjunction with the budget hearing for the De­partment of Social Welfa­re and Deve­lop­ment.

A day earlier, teachers mounted a picket to demand higher budget for education.

On September 14, hundreds of drivers converged in front of the headquarters of the Land Trans­por­tation Franchising and Regu­latory Board in Quezon City. They demanded that all jeepney drivers be allowed to resume their operations, as well as the reopening of all routes and the junking of the jeep­ney pha­seout scheme. The agency allowed 1,159 more jeepneys to travel but drivers asserted that this is insignificant. Around 58,000 jeepneys are still not allowed to travel leaving approximately 116,000 drivers without income.

On the same day, rights group Karapatan launched the Global Day of Action for the Philippines in conjuction with the opening of the session of the United Nations Human Rights Council. Five United Nations special rapporteurs, members of the European, Basque and Australian parliament, international coalitions and institutions, and human rights defenders in Hongkong, Korea, Kenya, Turkey and South Africa participated in the program.

Martial law victims and their supporters protested at the Ban­ta­yog ng mga Ba­ya­ni on September 11, in conjunction with the birthday of the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos. They condemned the Marcos Day bill which aims to declare September 11 as a holiday in Ilocos to commemorate Marcos.

In Davao City, members of Gab­riela, KMU and Karapatan marched across the Orcullo Drive last September 14 to protest against the continuing and widespread red-tagging and harassment campaign of the military and local government directed against local activists.

AB (2020-09-21): Protests for human rights, against budget cuts and dictatorship