Smooth, no frills protests on Bonifacio Day, says labor groups

Labor groups expect things to run smoothly as they launch Bonifacio Day protests on Nov. 30.

(Jansen Romero / MANILA BULLETIN)

“We expect to peacefully hold our protests with no interference from the police,” Elmer “Ka Bong” Labog, KMU chairperson, said in a statement.

“If any untoward incident happens, it is no longer because the gathering is large. That will be outright harassment and repression,” he added.

The group asked Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque to ask the police to uphold the right to peaceful assembly.

KMU said this citing his media interview where he asserted that it is perfectly fine to hold large gatherings as long as the attendees wear face masks and are in an open-air venue.

The group told Roque to ensure that the police will back off from these legitimate assemblies that are integral to the people’s right to free expression.

The KMU will join labor centers in the Workers Resist: Global Day of Action for Trade Union and Human Rights in the Philippines.

Various groups will gather at UP Diliman at 10 a.m. Monday to voice out their calls for jobs, rights, safety, and accountability.

This will be further strengthened by nationally-coordinated protest actions in different regional centers and counterpart activities abroad by affiliates of the Council of Global Unions.

KMU assured that the protesters have formed committees to ensure proper health protocols and cleanliness in the protest area.

The Socialist labor alliance PAGGAWA will also march on Bonifacio Day to present a comprehensive list, which aim to protect the workers and the poor from the effects of the pandemic, global recession, and climate-induced calamities.

The alliance said the list contains reforms that every organization under PAGGAWA collectively resolved to struggle for and achieve for the Filipino working masses.

The labor groups will assemble at Bonifacio’s shrine in front of Tutuban Shopping Mall, Manila at 8 a.m. and then march to Mendiola by 9 a.m.
PAGGAWA will merge with other groups on their way to the Mendiola Peace Arch.

PAGGAWA is composed of the following labor centers and federations: Associated Trade Unions (ATU), Association of Genuine Labor Organizations (AGLO), Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino (BMP), Katipunan ng Samahang ng mga Manggagawa (KASAMA), Katipunan ng Manggagawang Makabayan (KMM), Metro East Labor Federation (MELF), National Union Based Construction Workers (NUBCW), Socialista, and Workers Advocates for Struggle, Solidarity of Unions in the Philippines for Empowerment and Reforms (SUPER), Workers Advocates for Struggle, Transformation and Organization (WASTO).