“Filipino migrant women rise and unite with the oppressed Filipino masses against Duterte’s tyranny!” — Migrante International on International Women’s Day

For their invaluable contribution to the global struggle against oppression and inequality, Migrante International salutes all Filipino migrant women who continue to take bold actions for justice and national democracy. We honour them along with all women from the peasant and working class for their unrelenting resistance against modern-day slavery, and all forms of violence being perpetuated under the US-Duterte regime. 

At this time of great anguish and tribulation, the US-Duterte regime is playing deaf and blind to the troubles afflicting the FIlipino masses. President Duterte’s mad circle of lap dogs extol his repulsive regime for all its perversions and self-serving lies. Their flowery deceits can never conceal the tragedies that continue to hound Filipino migrant women as in the cases of Mary Jean Alberto and Mary Jane Veloso. Filipinos in ever-increasing numbers are leaving the country to escape poverty and unemployment. The glaring crisis grips millions of Filipino workers, thousands of whom from companies like Honda, Nokia, Wells Fargo and Philippine Airlines are losing their jobs due to closure and illegal termination. 

Photo: onebillingrising.org

Even amidst the global COVID-19 epidemic and the threats of war hoving in the Middle East, Filipinos relentlessly flock in large numbers abroad as the Duterte regime refuses to address the demands of Filipino workers affronted by contractualization and slave wages. With the onslaught of this public health threat, OFWs are experiencing discrimination and slave like treatment overseas. An increasing number of them are unjustly being terminated. If they return back to the Philippines, nothing awaits them except impoverishment. 

Moreover, the Duterte regime’s ill-preparedness to handle the COVID-19 outbreak is exposed by the inadequacy of public health infrastructure and safety nets which health officials have sought to deny. Feudal oppression in the countryside through massive land grabbing by big private developers and foreign-controlled mining is aggravated by Duterte’s stubborn adherence to neoliberal economic policies as exhibited through his approbation of land conversions and the grievous Rice Liberalization Law. 

The stench of corruption reeks with the massive inflow of dirty money escorted by AFP and PNP officials to cater to the criminal demands of gambling lords, traffickers and brothel operators feasting in POGO enclaves. Rescued POGO worker Lai Yu Cian, a Taiwanese victim of illegal recruitment, trafficking and sexual exploitation revealed that whenever she attempts to escape, her captors would always drop Michael Yang’s name who happens to be Duterte’s very close friend. Yang has also been linked to illegal drug trade. 

Violence against women is rife in a country under a macho-Fascist president who has admitted before public television that he sexually abused their maid. Her violent misogyny and contempt for women is being emulated by uniformed personnel of AFP and PNP. We see this everyday as in the recent case of Argao Police Chief Ildefonso Miranda Jr., who sexually exploited female detainees in his station. Last month, PNP’s Oplan X-Men in Makati sparked anger for profiling and conducting warrantless arrests of transwomen. This points to the violence and persecution that LGBTIs face everyday for their sexual orientation, gender identity and social class. 

Depravity has long been typical in AFP and PNP, institutions generated by a criminal elitist system. In the service of the ruling class made up of big landlords and big compradors, mercenaries from these criminal groups wage brutal wars against the masses and their defenders. Without hesitation, they illegally arrested Cora Agovida of Gabriela and Tacloban 5 which includes Marissa Cabaljao who was still nursing her one-year old baby. These are human rights workers who face persecution from Duterte’s Fascist regime.

To bolster state terror and violence, the US-Duterte regime is pushing for amendments in the Human Security Act to justify warrantless arrests, illegal detention, wiretapping, surveillance and the filing of trumped-up charges to violate our most cherished democratic rights. Migrante International vehemently condemns these atrocious Machiavellian maneuvers. 

Today on International Women’s Day, Filipino migrant women will march forward with the oppressed masses to champion our national democratic struggles to bring down the tyrannical reign of the US-Duterte regime. Migrante International rises and unites with all militant and progressive women around the world to wage global resistance against Fascism, Neoliberalism and Imperialism. 

Migrant women unite!

End tyranny!

Oust the US-Duterte regime!