Drooling after an unbridled sway of Fascist dictatorship and vicious plunder, the Duterte regime unleashed the entire state-machinery to deprive Filipino voters of their right to freely exercise suffrage in a free and fair conduct of the midterm national elections. As progressive organizations rooting for Makabayan partylists and candidates endured the onslaught of threats and black propaganda, this year’s election process was wrecked with all sorts of irregularities and election violations.
In the same manner, overseas Filipino voters are troubled by late deliveries of ballots, postal delays, broken seals, stamp issues and receipt discrepancies. OFWs are bearing the brunt of disenfranchisement in this election and this demonstrates the Duterte regime’s apathy in ensuring the unhampered exercise of our constitutionally guaranteed right to vote in the national elections.
COMELEC’s declaration that the May 13 elections was a success is appalling. The poll body is obviously unmoved by the uproar from disenfranchised voters both in the Philippines and abroad concerning reported mismatch in voting receipts, rejected ballots, transmission delays and the deplorable glitches that plagued 1,000 SD cards and hundreds of vote counting machines (VCM).
The blatant use of government resources to campaign for Duterte’s candidates was coupled with dispatching AFP and PNP to terrorize and harass voters, volunteers and progressive organizations campaigning for Makabayan partylists and candidates. Scores of our Makabayan coordinators and campaigners were illegally arrested and killed during the campaign period. The Duterte regime is drenched with blood and must be requited for its crimes.
PNP’s last-minute smear operation of distributing newsletters containing black propaganda against senatorial candidate Neri Colmenares and the Makabayan bloc was a flagrant violation of Election laws.
Capitalizing on the Martial Law in Mindanao and its de facto implementation nationwide, the Duterte regime placed hundreds and who knows, even up to a thousand PNP officers as Board of Election Inspectors. This is an outright shot of the regime to manipulate the election process.
For several hours, the transmission of results from the server was in a complete halt. Without any clear explanation from COMELEC, just as the transmitted election returns reached 92.89% when the rest of the country was asleep, it suddenly went down to 49.76% at daybreak. More than just the absence of transparency, this likewise demonstrated the poll body’s ineptitude
Furthermore, last week’s declaration of two pro-Duterte parties (PDP-Laban and Nacionalista Party) as “dominant opposing parties” bodes ill on the credibility of the elections. Not only is this a transgression of the election code, this strips the opposition of the chance to obtain copies of election returns and certificates of canvass for scrutiny.
Now that the stooges of the ruling elite have dubiously made it to the top 12 through automated sorcery, we can be very certain that a rubber-stamp congress will work in favor of the US-Duterte regime’s anti-people agenda for the next three years. Expect this elitist buffoons to push for charter change, removal of term limits, and granting the US-Duterte regime with more “emergency powers” to swell the ambit of his despotic reign.
Despite all the vicious attacks, repression and black propaganda, the Duterte regime failed to stop the Filipino people from supporting Makabayan partylist groups that have always worked hard to uphold and secure the interests of the basic and marginalized sectors of society. Drawing support from the electoral campaign of Migrante chapters worldwide, the resounding success of Bayan Muna is a testament to the indefatigable confidence of the Filipino people to the legitimate causes of Makabayan partylist organizations on behalf of the struggling masses.
In one accord with our Makabayan legislators, Migrante International shall persist in championing the interests of Filipino migrants and their families. Freedom-loving OFWs will continue to oppose the regime’s state exactions and labor export program. Anchored on genuine agrarian reform and national industrialization, we shall press on in demanding decent jobs and secured lives back home.
Our defense of democratic rights does not end after the casting of our ballots. As the people’s movement advance in strength and numbers, we solidly assert our defiance against the US-Duterte regime’s tyrannical reign of terror until it finally reaches its ultimate doom.
Trabaho sa Pinas, hindi sa labas!
Stop the attacks!
Oust the US-Duterte regime!