Saturday, September 4, 2010

The people of Oldenburg show their colour!

- against political killings and enforced disappearances in the Philippines.

Oldenburg, Germany. During spotless sunshine the German-Philippine human rights initiative Sumabay Tayo! Walking together – for Justice! Informed about the human rights violations in the Philippines and their effects on health. This activity took place at the fifth human rights day in the German City of Oldenburg on 4 September 2010.

Since 2001, over 1200 people have become victims of politically motivated killings and over 200 persons have disappeared in the Philippines. The victims’ relatives and survivors are psychologically and physically burdened. “This is the first time that I hear about the alarming situation in the Philippines” states a visitor at the human rights day in the town center of Oldenburg.

“Stop the political killings in the Philippines!“ says the placard that is held by an activist towards the passersby. Suddenly the activist falls to the ground. A crime scene remains showing the following inscription: Edison Lapuz, murdered on 12 May 2005. Lapuz was a pastor of the United Church of Christ in the Philippines and a human rights activist. He was murdered by masked men on the Philippine Island of Leyte in 2005.

The drama presented by Sumabay Tayo! was able to attract the attention of the numerous passers-by in the pedestrian area of Oldenburg. “The pantomime is impressive. It conveys a message that inspires and provokes reflection”, one pedestrian notes.

At the Sumabay Tayo! information desk, one of the eleven placards calls attention to the situation of 43 Philippine health workers. The so called Morong 43 were subjected to illegal arrest in February 2010. They are detained since. The detainees suffer from medical disorders and even a newborn baby was exposed to the inhuman conditions in the jail.

“This activity informs the German public about the human rights violations in the Philippines and motivates to take action. This increases the pressure on the Philippine government to do something against the injustice”, states a Philippine visitor. This was stressed by over 90 people in Oldenburg who gave their picture and their signature for a stop of political killings and enforced disappearance.

“We call for the thorough and comprehensive investigations of human rights violations, fair trials, the prosecution of all perpetrators and mastermind regardless of their ranks, the protection of witnesses, victims and their relatives as well as their medical care”, says Hannah Wolf, spokesperson of Sumabay Tayo! She adds: “We are very happy that so many people have joined us in our demands through their pictures and signatures. The support of the Oldenburg public has clearly exceeded all of our expectations.” The pictures as well as the demands will be send as postcards to the newly elected Philippine president Aquino.

Hannah Wolf

Spokesperson of Sumabay Tayo!
Mobile: +491775150556
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Justice for the 43!