DAVAO CITY – A letter, originally written in Bahasa, from an Indonesian doctor to overseas Filipino worker Mary Jane Veloso was translated to English and is posted in Facebook.

The letter was written by Dr. Marcia Soumokil, who, according to the website of Angsamerah Experts Networking, is an active promoter of  gender integration in health and reproductive health services and projects.

Soumokil said in the letter that Veloso should remember that a lot of Indonesians “have tried so hard” to save her.

“Many of us believe your innocence. Many of us understand and truly understands the vulnerabilities of poor women with lack of education and employment opportunities, who easily becomes the target of leaders of drugs cartel, to become (their) courier. A courier that can easily be sacrificed if the plan fails, and they will still be laughing loudly while recruiting another innocent woman,” Soumokil said.

Soumokil also told Mary Jane to believe that her death sentence has helped her (Soumokil) to see the “true face” of Indonesian president Joko Widodo whom she voted during the last election.

Soumokil said she sees Widodo as  “(s)omeone who is very “afraid” of the pressures from that “certain” groups, that he decides to play deaf to his own consciousness of the truth.”

“Someone who cannot be trusted to solve all the human rights abuses and violations that we experienced in the past, because he also ignores your rights to live and fair trials. I thank you personally, for helping in opening my eyes,” she wrote.

Soumokil also said that if Veloso dies, the public should “use her death” to prove that death penalty in Indonesia is “barbaric”.

Soumokil said Indonesia has 25 female migrant workers who are also facing death sentence in Malaysia and other countries with similar cases to Veloso.

“That is why, it is important for us to join the campaigns to save Mary Jane, not only because we’re against death penalty, but also so that we can ensure our government having a dignity in negotiating the abolishment of death penalty to our citizens abroad,” Soumokil said.

At the end of her letter, Soumokil still hopes that Pres. Jokowi would give Veloso a chance to fair trial.

Activists in Davao has continued their candle lighting activities today with a protest action held Tuesday morning in front of the Consulate General of Indonesia here to call for a fair trial for Veloso. Protesters also reiterated their call for the government to junk its labor export policy.

In the 2012 Survey on OFWs by the government, released in September 4, 2013, there is an estimate 2.2 million OFWs during the period of April to September 2012. The estimate for the same period of 2011 was 2.158 million. (davaotoday.com)

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