Posted 2:30 p.m., Dec. 14, 2006
Representatives of various women’s groups and other women personalities gathered in a press conference at Quezon City, Dec. 15, to register their participation in the mounting protests against the government’s moves to amend the Constitution.
At the conference, the women leaders signed a cloth bearing the call “Women Say No to Gloria’s Chacha.”
The women present at the press conference belong to the United Methodist Church (UMC), GABRIELA, Winlaw, Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (Bayan or New Patriotic Alliance), Migrante International, Ecumenical Women’s Forum, GABRIELA Women’s Party, Bangon Kababaihan (Rise up Women), United Opposition, Kubol ng Pag-asa (Tent of Hope), Women March, and Pwersa ng Masang Pilipino (Strength of the Filipino Masses).
The Unity Statement was read by Rev. Sol Villalon of UMC.
“We believe that GMA’s insistence on making major changes in the Constitution is immoral and self-serving, done as it is with the selfish intention of perpetuating those in power, it said. “We believe that the Arroyo Charter Change trick will lead to the rape of our patrimony, our environment and our natural and human resources.”
GABRIELA Partylist Rep. Liza Maza said that the people should stay vigilant even if House Speaker Jose de Venecia announced that the resolution of the House of Representatives forming a Constituent Assembly is archived. She said that the House Committee on Constitutional Amendments will hold a meeting on Tuesday, Dec. 19, to discuss the proposal for a Constitutional Convention.
“Whether Cha-cha is pursued through Con-ass or Con-con, it will only benefit them (administration officials) not the people,” said Maza.
Sen. Jamby Madrigal described the planned charter change as “constitutional rape” and scored Arroyo and de Venecia’s “political selfishness and arrogance.”
She also urged the public to oppose the brother of charter change, the anti-terrorism bill.
If passed, Madrigal said, even simple meetings like what they were holding could be considered an act of terrorism.
“This is the secret weapon of GMA if ever she fails to have the cha-cha,” she said.
At the same conference, women leaders pledged their full support to the big protest prayer rally to be held on Dec. 17, Sunday at the Luneta Park. It was announced that organizations under Bayan will first have a program at the Liwasang Bonifacio on the same day before proceeding to Luneta.
Meanwhile, more rallies are scheduled before Dec. 17. The United Opposition announced that protest actions, including a work stoppage, will be held in Makati on Dec.16. (Bulatlat.com)