Today, Filipino workers join the nation in protest against the Duterte regime’s tyranny and creeping Marcosian dictatorship. Forty five years after Marcos declared Martial Law, the horrors of his fascist authoritarian rule are being revived under Duterte’s wars against the people.
Duterte’s war against the poor must stop. Under the guise of his ruthless “war on drugs”, Duterte has murdered over 13,000 Filipinos with the sole aim of sowing terror among the people, especially the poor, to make us bow down in fear and succumb to his authoritarian rule.
This was evident in the murder of Francisco Guevarra, a unionist from the Gabay ng Unyon sa Telekomunikasyon ng mga Superbisor sa PLDT (GUTS-PLDT) and chairman of Barangay 106 in Caloocan. He was summarily executed last July 12, 2017 after refusing to subject his constituents to the PNP’s Oplan Tokhang as a political stand against the government’s anti-poor war on drugs.
Under the guidance of the United States government through its “war on terror”, Duterte has waged a war of suppression against workers, peasants, Moros, Lumads and the entire Filipino people. Duterte’s Martial Law in Mindanao and Oplan Kapayapaan in the entire country is his response towards the people’s growing outrage over his failed promises and continued implementation of anti-people policies.
Duterte has also used his tyrannical rule to impose his neoliberal economic policies that kills workers with worsening hunger and poverty by promoting cheap, contractual and oppressed labor.
He has legalized contractualization through the DOLE Order 174, adopted a wage cut-wage freeze scheme through the two tiered wage system, while his martial law against workers’ rights remains in place especially in special economic zones where no union-no strike policies are implemented. Duterte is also seeking to kill workers by forcing us to work for 12 hours with pressed-down wages through the impending institutionalization of flexible work arrangements such as the compressed work week scheme.
Duterte’s tyranny must end. Filipino workers vow to resist and defeat Duterte’s attempt to establish his Marcosian dictatorial rule. We will not allow him to impose his fascist dictatorship that would only allow him to freely implement more pro-US and pro-big business neoliberal economic policies. ###