By Prof. Jose Maria Sison,
International League of Peoples’ Struggle
04 February 2011
The International League of Peoples’ Struggle (ILPS) conveys our warmest and most militant greetings of solidarity to the members and officers of the Katipunan ng Samahang Manggagawa sa Korea (KASAMMAKO) on the occasion of your 13th anniversary under the most apt theme “Palakasin at palawakin ang ating mga organisasyon at pamilya sa pagsulong ng tunay na pagbabago sa Lipunang Pilipino”.
As the foremost progressive alliance of Filipino organizations in South Korea, KASAMMAKO has led the movement of Filipino migrants towards victories for the rights and wellbeing of overseas Filipino workers. KASAMMAKO has shown that even under extreme condition of frequent and vicious crackdown operations by the Korean authorities, the migrant’s movement can be established and can flourish. Even more importantly, you have shown that in such condition, the need to arouse, organize and mobilize migrants becomes even more paramount.
We salute you for your continuing efforts to strengthen the movement of migrant workers of different nationalities to face the intensifying attacks of the South Korean government on the rights of all foreign workers. The support from the local trade union and organizations that KASAMMAKO has helped to generate has played a vital role in resisting violations of the rights of migrants.
For the past 13 years, KASAMMAKO has also been very active in contributing to the struggles of the Filipino people by mobilizing Filipino migrants on national issues and generating solidarity, especially on the issues of worker’s rights and against extrajudicial killings of activists in the Philippines. Reciprocally, KASAMMAKO performs its internationalist duty by supporting the various issues that concern the Korean people. The work you do and the victories you have achieved serve as inspiration to other migrants and people struggling for rights and fundamental societal changes.
As imperialist crisis rages and its plunder of the world intensifies, the plight of Filipino migrant workers in South Korea shall continue to worsen. For sure, the attacks on the rights of migrants especially the undocumented migrant workers will continue. Undocumented migrant workers are among the first to be blamed for the economic problems that plagues countries like South Korea that play host to hundreds of thousands of migrants. They are made as scapegoats for various problems – even including rising criminality – to curb the tide of the host people’s discontent.
Meanwhile, the Philippine government cannot be relied on to defend nor protect OFWs as its only interest lies on how labor export program keeps the economy afloat and diffuses the social unrest brewing from the widespread poverty and massive dislocation of the people.
We are confident that KASAMMAKO shall remain steadfast in its determination and drive to expand and strengthen the ranks of the migrant workers in South Korea. We know you will further build on the gains you have achieved and the lessons you have learned to pursue the struggle for migrant’s rights, contribute to the Filipino people’s movement for genuine social change and stand with the people of South Korea and of the world in resisting imperialist exploitation, oppression and aggression.
KASAMMAKO has blazed the trail for the militant struggle of OFWs in South Korea. We know that you shall continue on this path and achieve more victories in the future.
Long live KASAMMAKO!
Long live the migrant workers!
Long live international solidarity!