The obsolete, repressive law on libel is one of the instruments of oppressors to attack the freedom of speech and expression and press freedom. Since 1986, more than 180 journalists have been killed and more still suffer from oppressive libel charges.
Mindanao is endowed with the largest and the richest natural resources in the Philippines yet majority of its tri-people, lowly Christian settlers included, are robbed of its blessing. Many are still landless and living in abject poverty.
The first story of Christmas was the story of Jesus’ parents who arrived at Bethlehem from a long trip and went from house to house to find a bed so that they can sleep from a long trek. They could only find a haystack in a farm for a bed; but it was from such a lowly, humble place that the story of hope, faith and love began.
One of the condemnable things during the December 9 bus bombing in Maramag, Bukidnon was that dozens of students from high school and college were not spared from the incident.
There is no reason to rejoice over the recent approval of the consolidated bill on Freedom of Information (FOI) in the House at the committee level, and the approval of the Senate version earlier this year.
Five years after the massacre of 58 men and women including 32 journalists in Ampatuan town in Maguindanao, justice remains elusive and impunity still reigns.
For a president conscious of his “popular” image, Noynoy Aquino’s recent appearance in Davao and Samar showed him as somewhat inaccessible.
The treevolution should be people-centered. The event should not be done to favor corporations because they are required carbon sink. The people’s output should not be part of that required of the corporations. We have different responsibilities and more is required of those who use the most resources.
Ironically, I must leave what I know as home for what I know as a battlefield: from Mindanao to Manila. Strange, how years before, my paradigm was in a complete reverse, patterned to common myths of vain consequence. And now, my permanent home will not be the mapped streets and affixed buildings of the known city that I head toward, but the roving mountains and seas, unmarked except by restless feet that follow stars and struggles. Soon enough, I shall be called back home.
This is our time. The fate of the Philippines is in our hands. Let’s do this for our country. Let us redeem its dignity where it lost it—right where we are now. Let us be who we are called to be. Let us not allow anyone to enslave us further. Let’s do this not for hatred of the government, but for the love of our country, our motherland.