Filipino Youth Overseas Demand an End to Government Corruption in the Philippines, Calls for the Abolition of All Pork Barrel

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

August 28, 2013

Reference: Yves Nibungco, National Chairperson, Anakbayan-USA

yvesnibungco@gmail.com

Filipino Youth Overseas Demand an End to Government Corruption in the Philippines, Calls for the Abolition of All Pork Barrel

We, Filipino youth and students overseas, stand with our sisters and brothers in the Philippines who are taking to the streets in the “Million People March vs. Pork Barrel”.

We join the call to abolish the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) and the presidential Special Purpose Fund (SPF). For too long, these discretionary funds have been used to fatten the pockets of corrupt politicians at the expense of our people’s welfare.

We demand that the Philippine government prioritize funding our people’s needs and not their own luxurious lifestyles. In the upcoming 2014 National Budget, the Aquino administration is set to allocate P1.2 trillion ($28.2 billion) for the president’s SPF and P25 billion ($565 million) for congress and senate’s PDAF. Despite his “Tuwid na Daan” (“Righteous Path”) rhetoric, the amount of pork barrel fund has actually doubled during Aquino’s administration and government corruption has only worsened. We demand the immediate rechanneling of all these funds directly to vital social  services that our poorest sisters and brothers need, such as public education, health, housing, protection and welfare for overseas Filipino workers and even flood control.

We also call for the immediate, independent, and thorough investigation and prosecution of all parties involved in the misuse of the people’s money. The Pork Barrel must be emptied and the stench of all corrupt politicians and public officials must be aired out. Investigation and trial must be led by independent entities and not the politicians in senate and congress themselves. This process must be made public and televised. We want justice and accountability.

We recognize that this is bigger than Janet Lim-Napoles and the corrupt politicians involved in the current Pork Barrel Scam. This is about a system that breeds corruption and serves the interests of the wealthiest few while neglecting the poor majority of our people.  We understand that it is exactly this type of corruption that is one of the main root of the ongoing economic crisis in our homeland, which forces millions of migrants like our parents to search for livelihood in other countries.

That is why, though we are thousands of miles away from our motherland, we are one with the people in fighting against systemic corruption in the Philippines. August 26th is only the beginning. No damage control nor deception by Aquino’s public relations team can stop the growing tide of people’s anger. The entire corrupt system must be changed in order for future generations to live in a society that is truly just and free.

ABOLISH ALL PORK BARREL FUNDS NOW!

RE-CHANNEL FUNDS TO SOCIAL SERVICES!

INVESTIGATE AND PROSECUTE ALL INVOLVED IN CORRUPTION!

Organizational signatories:

United States:

Active Leadership to Advance the Youth (ALAY)

Anakbayan- USA

Anakbayan Los Angeles

Anakbayan San Diego

Anakayan East Bay

Anakbayan Silicon Valley

Anakbayan Seattle

Anakbayan Chicago

Anakbayan New York

Anakbayan New Jersey

Asian American Student Union – Saint Peter’s University

Barkada – Farleigh Dickinson University

Filipino American Student Association at Oberlin College

Filipino American Student Association of the University of Washington

Filipinos Uniting Nations at Kean (FUNK) – Kean University

Filipinos Uniting Students in Other Nations (FUSION) – City University of New York, Baruch College

Kasama – University of North Carolina Chapel Hill

Katipunan – University of California Riverside

Laya Migrant Youth for Change and Action, Daly City

League of Filipino Students – San Francisco State University

Maganda Magazine

PEACE – City College of San Francisco

Philippine Union of La Guardia Students Organization (PULSO) – City University of New York, La Guardia Community College

Pilipinos of Hunter (POH) – City University of New York, Hunter College

Kaibigan – Portland State University

Samahang Pilipino – University of California Los Angeles

Youth of Iglesia Filipino Independiente – Diocese of Tampa (Eastern USA & Eastern Canada)

Canada:

Anakabyan Montreal

Anakbayan Toronto

BAYAN- Canada

Binnadang – Migrante Canada

Filipino Student Association of Toronto (FSAT) – University of Toronto

Australia:

Anakbayan Melbourne

Netherlands:

SAMAKA – Netherlands

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