ILPS expresses sympathy for flood victims in the Philippines and praises the work of retrieval, relief and rehabilation

Prof. Jose Maria Sison
Chairperson, International League of Peoples' Struggle
December 22, 2011

We, the International League of Peoples' Struggle, express most heartfelt sympathy to the great number of flood victims in the cities of Cagayan de Oro and Iligan, and the provinces of Misamis Oriental, Lanao del Norte, Lanao del Norte. Lanao del Sur , Bukidnon and part of Caraga in Mindanao, Philippines.

We share the grief and sense of loss of the Filipino people over the death of more than a thousand people, the continuing disappearance of many others, the displacement of people by the hundreds of thousands, the lack of shelter, clothing, food, potable water and medicine and the destruction of homes, social infrastructure, agriculture and other means of livelihood as a result of the flash floods brought about by Typhoon Sendong.

We praise highly the people from various walks of life and many organizations and institutions for engaging and cooperating in retrieval, relief and rehabilitation work. We are deeply pleased to know that ILPS-Philippines, its member-organizations and allies in the Philippines are participating in the work to the best of their ability.

We call upon all the 400 member-organizations of the ILPS throughout the world and all their allies to initiate or participate in campaigns and activities for the purpose of raising funds and other resources for the benefit of those most victimized in the disaster-stricken areas in the Philippines.

We must understand how the disaster of colossal proportions has occurred. The causes include 1) the global climate change due to relentless imperialist plunder, 2) the massive deforestation, soil erosion and silting of the rivers due to unbridled logging, mining, plantation and real estate operations by foreign and big comprador-firms and 3) the clear absence of a system of disaster warning and relief due to the wanton diversion of public funds to bureaucratic corruption, military operations, profit remittances by foreign companies and debt service to foreign banks.

We must all try to provide immediate aid to the victimized people in terms of retrieval, relief and rehabilitation. But we must also expose and confront the long-running causes that have brought about the huge disaster and take the necessary measures to remove them for the long term benefit of the people.

The broad masses of the people must go to the full extent of holding the ruling system and the current Aquino regime accountable for the perpetuation and aggravation of the man-made causes of the disaster and must strive to undertake fundamental social change in the Philippines. .###