Editorial from the Malaya Movement National Secretariat
On February 6, 2018, more than two dozen concerned community leaders formed the Malaya Movement. Coming from all over the U.S. and representing the Filipino community, faith leaders, academics, lawyers, youth leaders, business owners, and human rights advocates, the conveners of the Malaya Movement established the new alliance to express their fullest condemnation of the increasingly fascist administration of Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte.
Since Malaya Movement’s formation in 2018, we were able to build a formidable movement that brought together individuals and organizations from various sectors in the United States as a unified movement against the Duterte regime’s escalating human rights violations, curtailment of civil liberties as well as his efforts to put up his own dictatorship.The Malaya Movement has now earned the respect and support of the Filipino community not only in the United States but across the world. There is now a Malaya Movement in Canada and in Australia.
Immediately after formation, the Malaya Movement helped organize a speaking tour of human rights defenders in the Philippines to raise awareness about the atrocities of the Duterte regime. Later that year, we sent delegates to the International People’s Tribunal in Brussels, Belgium.
In 2019, the Malaya Movement organized and mobilized both in the streets and in the halls of congress. We have built a broad resistance against Duterte’s dictatorship. Last year alone, we were able to help organize and lead the biggest protests against the Duterte regime here in the United States. We put together the largest gathering for human rights and democracy in the Philippines with our national summit last April wherein we brought together almost 400 individuals and organizations from across the country. There, we resolved to further broaden our unity and work towards the ouster of the hated regime.
Together with BAYAN-USA, the International Coalition for Human Rights in the Philippines-USA (ICHRP-USA), U.S. Pinoys for Good Governance (USP4GG), Filipino-American Human Rights Alliance (FAHRA) and other cause oriented groups, we led more than a thousand people last July for the People’s State of the Nation Address. It included protests in ten major cities across the United States alongside hundreds of other protest actions around the world.
Our members and partners were able to pass resolutions in city councils, universities, and unions condemning the atrocities by the Duterte regime as well as in support of our causes. Our advocacy efforts also led to the holding of a congressional hearing which included cases of human rights violations in the Philippines contributing to the growing diplomatic isolation of the Duterte regime.
As dictatorship in the Philippines becomes more apparent, the resistance movement is forging ahead. The Malaya Movement is resolved to build a stronger movement against the Duterte regime and the unjust system that it represents. We call on everyone, human rights advocates and patriotic Filipinos. Join the resistance.