November 30, 2000
Press Statement
Rep. Renato Magtubo
Sanlakas Party-List
BMP Central Committee member

A day's pay for the independent movement of the masses

Crispin Beltran is asking Sanlakas and BMP not for a truce but surrender in retracting our "Resign All" call. Maybe Beltran has been bewitched and bedazzled by dining out with the big bourgeoisie in the country's premier business center.

Beltran is echoing the "indecent proposal" made by Bill Luz of MBC when we were planning the rally at Makati last November 14. Luz asked us to take down our "Resign All" streamers and keep our mouths shut regarding our criticisms of Gloria-Macapagal Arroyo in return for their endorsement of the Sanlakas rally at Makati.

As everyone saw at that rally, big business was not able to sweet-talk us into submission. But holding on to our principles does have its price to pay. We received not a single cent from the anti-Erap businessmen and politicians after that militant rally.

Let it be clear that we find nothing wrong in soliciting nor receiving financial support from capitalists or trapos as long as principles are not compromised. The militant groups do not have the logistics and resources to fund massive rallies. The funds will have to come from the moneyed elite. Remember that Cardinal Sin sees nothing immoral in taking money from the devil if used for good.

Our own experience is for that November 14 rally, we spent P700,000 to transport 20,000 from their places of work and residence. This is different from Erap's rent-a-crowd which are not only bussed for free but are paid to attend the rallies. The workers and poor sacrifice a day's pay or income just to join our mobilizations. The least the militant groups could do is shoulder the transportation costs.

Now imagine the costs of shipping and bussing 2,000 peasants from Mindoro to Makati. A conservative estimate is P350 transportation back-and-forth, thus it comes out to a grand total of P700,000. Leaflets and food then double the actual costs. Mobilizing 10,000 farmers from the provinces easily runs into more than a couple of millions. Where does that money come from? Beltran must admit the truth that it came either directly from business or was coursed through Gloria. The anti-Erap elite has no problem funding Beltran's "Erap Resign" forces but will recoil from donating money to our "Resign All" movement.

We thus appeal to the working class and most especially to the class-conscious section of organized labor. Let us fund our own movement, the independent movement of the masses bannering the demand not just for the ouster of the rotten Estrada regime but the overhaul of the bankrupt political system.

This coming December, we request them to work an extra day and donate that day's pay for the independent movement marching under the "Resign All" slogan. If some 20,000 workers respond to this call and donate the minimum wage of P250, we can accumulate some P5 million, enough to fund a series of giant workers rallies. ###