FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 19, 2014
Reference: Yves Nibungco, National Chairperson, Anakbayan-USA
Anakbayan-USA calls on youth to “Dare To Struggle!”
San Francisco – Filipino youth and students from across the United States converge at San Francisco State University on June 20-22 for Anakbayan-USA’s first National Training and National Council meeting. The three day event is themed: Dare to Struggle: Strengthen Our Capacity to Fight and Win, aimed at training youth and student leaders on community organizing and activism.
“We are training the next generation of Filipino revolutionaries right at San Francisco State University, home of the Third World Liberation Front and the longest student strike in U.S. history where students of oppressed nationalities won the establishment of the first ethnic studies in the country. This national training aims to honor and continue that history,” said Yves Nibungco, National Chairperson of Anakbayan-USA.
On the first day, youth and students will be holding a protest at the Dewey Monument at Union Square to hit at the increasing U.S. intervention in the Philippines, especially the recent signing of the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) last April 28. The Dewey monument was erected to commemorate Admiral George Dewey’s victory over the Spaniards in the Spanish-American war, which also ushered in US’ colonialism of the Philippines.
The contingent will then march towards the Philippine Consulate General of San Francisco to protest the corruption under the President Benigno Aquino III administration. Labelled as “Pork Barrel King” by the youth activists, Anakbayan-USA is daring president BS Aquino to abolish all pork barrel funds, including the controversial Disbursement Acceleration Program and Special Presidential Fund, which are the biggest among pork barrel funds amounting to 1 trillion pesos. The activists are also challenging the Aquino government to spare no one, including his political allies in the liberal party and his cabinet.
“Corruption is not just an issue of a few bad apples. The pork barrel scam is a clear manifestation of bureaucrat-capitalism, that is the systematic running of a government for the profit of the ruling elite,” said Mr. Nibungco. “We are calling on the community to step-up and continue the protests leading up to July 28, when the Pork Barrel King, BS Aquino, will deliver his SONA [State of the Nation Address]. We say no to cover-up, no to selective prosecution. Everyone involved must be punished.”
On the second day, delegates coming from as far as New Jersey, San Diego and Seattle, will be undergoing trainings on community organizing and waging campaigns. The trainings are set to build the capacity of Filipino youth and student activists to address issues facing youth such as unemployment and student debt and issues facing the community such as wage theft, trafficking and low wages.
On the third day, Anakbayan-USA will be convening its National Council to discuss the organization’s direction for the next year. Delegates will be uniting on resolutions to strengthen and expand its work towards advancing the youth and student movement of Filipinos in the United States.
“We are a growing movement of Filipino-American youth who are not just mere observers of history, but rather active participants in the long narrative of our people’s struggle for national liberation and genuine democracy,” Mr. Nibungco concluded.
Anakbayan-USA is a national Filipino youth and student organization working to educate, organize, and mobilize the community to address important issues that affect Filipinos in the US and in the Philippines. It fights for national liberation and genuine people’s democracy in the Philippines.