Philippines: KMU Vows ‘No Votes for Anti-Poor Bets’

Apr. 30, 2007

MANILA — Nationwide activities for the Labor Day tomorrow will push through
despite delays in the release of Anakpawis Rep. Crispin Beltran. “We
will proceed to Mendiola as planned. It’s high time we reclaim
Mendiola as we continue to fight for freedom, democracy and defend the
people against human rights abuses and political repression initiated
by the Arroyo government. The continued illegal incarceration of Ka
Bel gives us more reason to confront Arroyo.”

Around 35,000 workers and other sectors will converge at Liwasang
Bonifacio at 12 nn tomorrow for a protest program. At 4 pm, protesters
will proceed to Mendiola. “We have a permit to rally. There’s no
reason for the Philippine National Police to block our marches within

KMU Chairperson Elmer Labog said that urgent issues like wage hikes,
employment and resistance to high prices will be raised by various
workers organizations and sectors tomorrow. “We will not compromise
the P125 legisted across-the-board wage hike demand. We are reminding
all local and national candidates that their support or neglect for
the legislated wage hike demand will be an important determinant in
gaining the solid labor vote on May 14.”

Labor Day LPG price hike hit

“Arroyo once again sacrificed the workers’ clamor for significant wage
hikes in favor of business interests. Her pro-business and anti-worker
character is clearly showing. Even the Department of Labor and
Employment’s two-faced offerings of cannot disguise Arroyo’s deep
aversion towards the promotion of workers’ issues.”

The group said that DOLE’s Rolling Stores offering tomorrow is just
meant for gimmickry. “Paano matitiyak ang mas mababang presyo ng
bilihin kung mismong sa Araw ng Paggawa, epektibong tataas ulit ang
presyo ng LPG.” Instead of giving out concrete gains for workers,
Malacanang allowed oil companies to hike up prices of liquefied
petroleum gas (LPG) by P1 or P11 per tank. It’s an insult that while
workers and consumers are demanding for wage hikes, the government
only consents to the whims of business owners to increase the prices
of products and services,” said Labog.

Workers bare Labor Agenda

The group expressed warning to candidates who are opposing the wage
hikes demands. “Candidates who will oppose the Labor Agenda will go
straight to the dustbins of history.”

The labor electoral agenda asserted by KMU contains the provision of
living wages for workers, secured and regular employment, respect and
recognition of workers right to organize and form unions, punishment
of perpetrators of human rights violations and trade union repression,
protection of overseas Filipino workers, provision of affordable and
decent housing for urban poor, rollback in prices of petroleum
products, rollback in prices of public utilities and reversal of
regressive tax measures including the RVAT. ###

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