Maria Liyab Magtanggol, KM’s regional spokesman, said the group staged a quick rally last Tuesday in this city “to protest the reactionary US-Aquino regime’s incompetence and continued connivance with the imperialist US despite the worsening living conditions of the Filipino masses.”
By DAVAO TODAY
DAVAO CITY, Philippines — The Kabataang Makabayan (KM), a revolutionary youth group under the National Democratic Front of the Philippines, criticized the Aquino government for its development plan, saying it “serves the US imperialist and elite class, and not the Filipino masses.”
In a press statement, Maria Liyab Magtanggol, KM’s regional spokesman, said the group staged a quick rally last Tuesday in this city “to protest the reactionary US-Aquino regime’s incompetence and continued connivance with the imperialist US despite the worsening living conditions of the Filipino masses.”
The underground spokesman said those who joined the rally are KM members from the different colleges and universities in the city.
President Benigno Aquino III was in the city during the closing program of the Philippine Development Forum (PDF) held at The Marco Polo Davao, February 5.
The PDF was a gathering of 300 officials and representatives from international financial institutions such as the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank, and foreign donors such as the Japan International Cooperation Agency, United States Agency for International Aid and Australian Agency for International Aid.
It was a venue for global development partners, along with government leaders and civil society groups among other stakeholders, “to learn about the government’s needs and priorities and how they can help,” said Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima in a press conference at the sides of the PDF.
Purisima said the sessions in the forum did not include pledging of aids from development partners, but only for them to be clarified what the country really needs.
Meanwhile, Secretary Florencio Abad of the Department of Budget and Management, said in a press statement that the 2013 PDF will be “crucial in bridging the Aquino administration’s socio-economic agenda with the objectives of our development partners.”
“We’re looking forward to nurturing a more focused and coordinated relationship with them, so we can seamlessly confront our most pressing development challenges in the country while facilitating growth and reform,” Abad said.
He added that through the 2013 PDF, “the administration and its development partners are expected to fine-tune the development agenda for the country and strategize the allocation of resources and knowledge, with the goal of streamlining programs and projects that will be conducive to growth in the Philippines.”
The budget secretary said that it was no coincidence that the PDF was held in the city, noting the Aquino administration’s aim of “enhancing Mindanao’s growth capacity and invigorating the region’s agri-fishery and tourism industries, as well as other fast-growing sectors.”
“With the Philippine economy performing very well, we need to ensure that the gains we’ve made will actually be felt by all Filipinos. Together with our development partners, we can work toward creating more growth dividends for Mindanao, thus empowering the region and giving it ample room for socio-economic progress,” Abad said.
However, KM’s Magtanggol said “the Filipino people continue to loathe the regime’s deceitful claim of economic growth.”
For almost three years, Magtanggol noted, “the US-Aquino regime is marked by massive privatization of basic social services particularly on health, education and housing under its flagship program, Public-Private Partnership.”
The revolutionary youth spokesman added that the Filipino people suffer the expensive cost of living, which is aggravated by the anti-people expanded value-added tax. This while multinational companies enjoy tax exemption through tax holidays and incentives.
“The US Imperialist continues to insist and justify its presence and military aggression in Philippine sovereignty to strengthen and secure its vested economic interest in Southeast Asia and in the country,” Magtanggol said, pointing out that “the unending entry and docking of various US warships in the country through a highly questionable and onerous Visiting Forces Agreement is a deliberate attack to Philippine’s sovereignty by the US imperialist.”
The group cited the USS Bremerton that docked at Subic two months ago, the USS Cheyenne at Subic Bay on February 1 and the intrusion of the USS Guardian naval minesweeper at the Tubbataha Reefs Natural Park which damaged 1,000 square meters of coral reefs. It added that the USS Stockdale, reportedly, will dock at Zambales City in three weeks.
KM also slammed the high budget for militarization to undertake the Aquino administration’s counter-insurgency operational plan Bayanihan.
“The mercenary Armed Forces of the Philippines, hiding under the cloak of ‘peace and development’ brought more chaos than peace and more destruction than development as it intensifies its attacks against the revolutionary movement and the legitimate resistance of the oppressed masses,” Magtanggol said.
KM cited a total of 132 cases of extrajudicial killings and 12 cases of enforced disappearances recorded from July 2010 to November 2012, or under Aquino’s rule.
With this, KM has challenged the Filipino youth “to take up arms and join the people’s war for liberation.” (davaotoday.com)