By TONGTONGAN TI UMILI (PR)
BAGUIO CITY — Progressive groups here in Baguio will be holding an ecumenical mass, forum and public discussion instead of a protest action on President Rodrigo Duterte’s first State of the Nation Address (SONA).
The forum and ecumenical service will be held at the Baguio City First United Methodist Church from 9:00 in the morning until twelve noon. This will be followed by a march parade from Baguio Post Office to Igorot Park at 1:30 in the afternoon. The activity will culminate at the Igorot Park where there will be a program discussing the people’s agenda, public viewing, and Kapihan para iti panagbalbaliw.
On the theme “Isulong ang adyenda ng mamamayan para sa pagbabago! Tunay na kalayaan at demokrasya, ipaglaban!” TTU-CPA wishes to challenge President Duterte to follow through on the promise of “change” he gave to the people.
“Progressive policies that will advance the interest of the basic Filipino masses are what we have been calling for the past administrations but to no avail. We are hoping that President Duterte will heed the call of the people and give us the change that we need” said Tracy Dumalo, secretary-general of TTU-CPA.
Unlike the past SONA ng Mamamayan held in Baguio, this year the group will be conducting activities that challenge the current administration, while promoting the People’s Agendas. They are also calling for the resumption of peace talks and the release of political prisoners.
“The resumption of peace talks will bring positive change in the country especially since the next agenda tackles the Comprehensive Agreement on Socio-Economic Reforms (CASER). This aims to address the roots of armed conflict in the country like poverty, injustice, human rights violations and lack of social services. We are hopeful that President Duterte is fully committed to the resumption of Peace Talks and the release of all political prisoners” added Dumalo.
The group stands firm that despite being a progressive president who claims to be leftist, they will still remain vigilant and watchful of President Duterte. “We will still continue to call for national democracy and the alleviation of poverty and injustice in the country. Now, more than ever, we must assert the rights of the people and call for the change that we truly need” ended Dumalo. # nordis.net