Monday, April 27, 2009

Critical Intervention of Migrante International

Press Release
28 April 2009

OFWs and their families hail critical intervention of migrant group at UN-CMW;
a milestone of OFWs’ struggle for genuine rights protection towards the creation of humane and just society

An alliance of overseas Filipino workers’ organizations based in the Middle East today said the intervention made by Migrante-Europe in behalf of Migrante International, the largest alliance of OFWs organizations around the world, is considered a milestone of OFWs struggle for genuine protection of their rights as mandated in the UN Convention on Protection of the rights of Migrant Workers and members of their families.

“This is indeed a new milestone, a break through, as this is the very first time OFWs and their families have been represented by a genuine migrant organizations’ alliance, the Migrante International, in the UN Committee on Migrant workers; this is the very first time the UN-CMW has heard a genuine and critical intervention conveying to the UN special body what is really the real score and vicious effects of RP labor migration program,” Monterona averred.

Monterona said this new milestone is a big step forward on OFWs struggle for genuine rights protection; Migrante’s intervention occurred on April 20 during the opening of the 10th session of the United Nations Committee on Migrant Workers held at the Palasi Wilson in Geneva, Switzerland where Migrante-Europe delivered its critique on the sugar-coated reports by the government of the Republic of the Philippines represented by no less than the most anti-OFW administration of Mrs. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.

“Migrante-Europe’s critical intervention, in behalf of Migrante International and its allied and OFWs member-organizations, by presenting its substantive critique to the Arroyo regime’s intensified labor export program, exposing its own vicious effects on the well being and rights of OFWs and members of their families is considered a new milestone and a big step forward on OFWs struggle for genuine protection of their rights and welfare,” said John Leonard Monterona, Migrante-ME regional coordinator.

Monterona said on previous years, pseudo migrant organizations have been deceptively representing OFWs and their families which were in fact observed to be conniving with the Arroyo regime; thus the UN-CMW was not given true, fair, and honest reports on the performance of the obligation of the Arroyo administration protecting the rights and welfare of its own migrant workers.

Monterona further said the critical intervention delivered by Migrante-Europe was a by-product of grass roots OFWs’ organizations true collaborative efforts who have put all together their critical observations supported by the thousands documented cases of government neglect and showcasing Arroyo regime’s failure to perform its own obligation as a signatory and ratifying state to the UN Convention on the protection of Migrants rights.

“Without the genuine grass roots OFW organizations which presence are stretched from all over the world, Migrante’s critical intervention to the UN-CMW would not be made possible and could not met its objective of exposing the real vicious effects of Mrs. Arroyo’s intensified labor export program, to mention the underlying social costs of migration and absence of genuine protection and welfare mechanisms for OFWs and their families, among others,” Monterona added.

The OFW leader said the delisting of the Philippines from the list of model states that comply with the UN-Convention on the Protection of Migrant Workers (UN-CMW) is a rightful decision made by the UN-CMW to give justice to all victims of Arroyo regime’s criminal neglect-- to thousands OFW victims of abuses, sexual harassment, maltreatment, labor malpractices, overcharging, illegal recruitment, mysterious deaths, and those falsely charged without proper legal assistance and lawyers, and those on death row.

“From now on, OFWs and their families will continue to speak on their own behalf in every international body and gathering like the UN-CMW putting forward its own concerns and issues by demanding its own government and even the host receiving governments to fulfill its duties and responsibilities, and to pro-actively defends migrant rights and advance its own welfare,” Monterona ended. # # #

For reference:
John Leonard Monterona
Migrante-ME regional coordinator
Mobile Phone: 00966 564 978 012
Email address:

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