For Immediate Release
August 29, 2022
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ICHRP Canada hosted Speaking tour for a Human Rights Defender
The International Coalition for Human Rights in the Philippines (ICHRP-Canada) organized and hosted the eastern Canada speaking tour of Danilo “Ka Daning” Ramos, National Chairperson of Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP/Peasant Movement of the Philippines). Ka Daning visited Toronto, Montreal and Ottawa from August 15 to 22, 2022.
On the first leg of his tour, Ka Daning met with leaders from the Filipino progressive organizations in Toronto to share the current situation of the peasants and other basic sectors in the Philippines.
The Development and Peace, sponsored a forum on Philippine human rights situation, faith response and Canada’s role which was held at Lady of Lourdes in Toronto ON. He also met with Amy Zavitz, the UCC program coordinator for Southeast Asia including the Philippines. He appealed to the ecumenical community and institutions to support the Filipino people’s assertion of their rights as guaranteed by the UDHR and related human rights conventions and instruments. Ka Daning also met with national organizers of the United Food and Commercial Workers, Pablo Godoy (Regional Director, West Canada) Emmanuel Lopez (Human Rights and Equity and Diversity) and Alex Banaag (national representative) to discuss the current situation of farmers in the Philippines. The two parties agreed to explore joint collaboration through international solidarity missions and activities.
Ka Daning’s second stop was in Montreal where he passionately spoke at a community forum on the theme, “Our Land, Our Food, Our Rice,” at the Immigrant Workers Centre, Van Home, Montreal, QC. He talked about the current situation of the Filipino people and shed light on the human rights defenders and peasant sector-realities and struggles like that of Tinang 83 and political prisoners.
In Ottawa, he was the featured speaker at the Migrante Ottawa Annual General Meeting at McNabb Community Centre followed by another community event at Bronson Centre.
One of the highlights of Ka Daning’s speaking tours was a meeting with the National Farmers Union (NFU) where he met with Katie Ward, president and Dave Thompson, staff member of NFU Ontario. Coming together, NFU and KMP shared its experiences, issues and concerns, a radical act of solidarity. Ramos talked about KMP’s campaigns, possible cooperation and solidarity with each other for the interest of their members and beyond.
Ka Daning, a farmer himself, is a staunch human rights defender and environmentalist. KMP has effective leadership over a total of 1.3 million rural people with 65 provincial chapters and 15 regional chapters nationwide.
He called on Canadians to act upon the worsening human rights atrocities under the newly elected president Ferdinand Marcos, JR, son of the ousted dictator, Marcos Sr. within the framework of protecting human rights defenders on Canada’s voices at risk and international solidarity.
In speaking, he reiterated the need and importance to be involved in the real issues of the Philippines and the call for solidarity with the struggle of Filipino peasants, agricultural workers and food producers for land, food sustainability and justice. #
Canada-Philippines Solidarity for Human Rights (CPSHR)/ Migrante BC/ Sulong UBC/
Migrante Ontario/ Canada-Philippines Solidarity Organization (CPSO)/ Anakbayan Toronto/
Ontario Committee for Human Rights in the Philippines (OCHRP)/ Anakbayan Ottawa/ Anti Imperialist Alliance (AIA)/ Migrante Ottawa/ Centre for Philippine Concerns (CPC)/ Migrante
Quebec/ Iglesia Filipina Independiente Montreal/ Filipino Parents Association in Quebec/