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Labor groups to stage rallies during APEC summit

Mayen Jaymalin (The Philippine Star) - November 11, 2015 - 9:00am

MANILA, Philippines – Various labor groups are preparing for massive rallies to protest the holding of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in Manila.

The Kilusang Mayo Uno (KMU) said yesterday its members and other labor unions are set to stage protest action during the APEC.

“The Filipino workers and the people have every reason to hold protests due to massive landlessness, joblessness, poor quality of jobs prevailing in the country,” KMU said.

KMU criticized the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) for ordering the enforcement of “no permit, no rally” and “maximum tolerance” policies.

“No permit, no rally has become a code word for no rally, but it violates the 1987 Constitution which states that no law shall be passed abridging the freedom of speech, of expression, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble and petition the government for redress of grievances,” KMU said.

The government has often invoked maximum tolerance whenever it wants to legitimize its violent dispersal of rallyists and make it appear that they have been unruly, KMU said.

“In truth, the government has often violently dispersed workers’ and people’s protests that are peaceful and orderly,” KMU said.

KMU criticized ambassador Marciano Paynor Jr., APEC 2015 National Organizing Council director-general, for claiming that any protests will embarrass the country.

“It’s not the protests that will embarrass the country, but the government’s repression of protestors,” KMU said.

“The world knows that the Philippines is a poor country, and economic summits like APEC are bound to attract protests.”

It will continue to protest to let the voices of the Filipino workers and people be heard during the APEC summit, KMU said.

 

ACIRC APEC ASIA-PACIFIC ECONOMIC COOPERATION COUNTRY DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR AND LOCAL GOVERNMENT GOVERNMENT KILUSANG MAYO UNO KMU MARCIANO PAYNOR JR. NATIONAL ORGANIZING COUNCIL PROTESTS
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