The Philippines office of the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for
Liberty (FNF) announces the launch of It’s All About
This year, FNF Philippines celebrates its 25th anniversary. 1986
was a time when the country had just won its freedom from martial
rule. It was a momentous period in history, and FNF Philippines
was a proud witness of how Filipinos struggled and triumphed in
their quest for freedom.
Four years ago, the Friedrich Naumann Foundation added
für die Freiheit(German for ‘for liberty’, or ‘for freedom’)
to its name. FNF chairman Dr.
Wolfgang Gerhardt, MP proposed the change to clearly define
what FNF aims for, “which is freedom in all political
dealings.” FNF bases its political program on freedom
where it also tries to build a “culture of freedom.”
FNF Philippines’ campaign-project It’s All About
Freedom aims to reintroduce and promote the concept of freedom
as the key proposition in addressing the political, social and
economic problems of the country.
The Philippines may have achieved democracy and freedom from
tyranny, but it continues to be plagued by corruption, poverty,
and helplessness years after the People Power Revolution. Especially
during the previous administration, the delivery of public services
was sluggish because government officials pocketed the money.
The political environment offered very few opportunities for Filipinos
to realize their goals.
Fortunately, there was still an occasion for Filipinos to exercise
their choice. The 2010 elections were another significant moment
when Filipinos fought for their freedom from oppression - not
from dictatorship but from corruption and negativism. They elected
a leader, a liberal, who encourages them to dream again. President
Aquino promises to eradicate the “wang-wang culture”
(the use of police sirens that gave politicians priority in traffic
and that came to symbolize abuse of power). Now is the time to
maximize freedom. A culture of freedom shall replace the wang-wang
Are you free?
It’s All About Freedom aims to translate the complex
concept of freedom into everyday language. It hopes to rekindle
people’s pursuit for freedom not only for societal problems
but also for self-determination. FNF Philippines recognizes that
there is a need to convert one’s freedom into empowerment
and self-actualization, and to inculcate into the value system
the responsibilities that come with civil liberties and human
The campaign targets young people with social interest, and
activists in and potential supporters of political parties and
NGOs. It shall foster debate on the issues related to the concept
of freedom in the country, identify social and legislative restraints
to freedom, and develop and promote policies to enhance political
and economic freedom. Freedom is the centerpiece of the liberal
agenda. FNF Philippines hopes to sustain awareness and positive
action towards the use of freedom through continuous engagement.
The Foundation expects to achieve these by creating a network
of influential media advocates, and through seminars, workshops
and various media and advocacy efforts that also harness new and
I am free
Freedom to live your own life, to pursue your own dreams,
to make your own choices and to take your own responsibility
– unhampered by busy-bodying bureaucrats, politicians,
bishops, imams, teachers family and other nannies
Freedom to use your talents to get the best out of yourself
- unhampered by corruption, red-tape, secrecy and aggression
Freedom from poverty, ignorance, disease and pollution
Freedom to choose who runs your town and your country –
a fair political system, with transparent political parties,
where politicians are properly held to account
It’s All About Freedom
FNF Philippines earlier launched
The Liberal Project as part of its anniversary programs.
The Liberal Project recognizes initiatives that translate
the benefits of freedom into activities that improve communities.
Consistent with the objective of communicating freedom as more
than just a philosophy, FNF Philippines put up a search to identify
existing endeavors that actually have a tangible impact on people’s
lives. 32 projects were nominated from across the country. An
online vote will be conducted, and a jury will select the top
On 27 November 2011, FNF and the University of the Philippines
National College of Public Administration and Governance (UP-NCPAG)
in cooperation with the Quezon City government are organizing
a Freedom Runthat
could rouse the public’s consciousness on the value of freedom
that they enjoy today. Acknowledging that this kind of activity
appeals to all ages and across all sectors, FNF endeavored in
this project to engage more people and hopefully inspire positive
action to address issues that restrain them from maximizing the
benefits of freedom. For this year’s Freedom Run,
runners shall dash to a finish line where they can say “i
am free from corruption.” The date of the event is
significant as it is also the birthday of Ninoy Aquino who exceedingly
contributed to the country’s freedom from tyranny and the
Filipinos’ self-actualization. Ninoy is the father of President
Aquino who was a staunch opponent of the dictator, Ferdinand Marcos.
His assassination in 1983 triggered the People Power Revolution.
A number of people have committed support to the freedom campaign,
among them is singer-artist Noel Cabangon who writes music as
a way to engage the public in state affairs. Similar to his compositions
Tungo Pagbabago Para sa Pagbabago (Towards Change, For Change)
and Ako’y Isang Mabuting Pilipino (I’m a Good Filipino
Citizen), Noel has pledged to write a Freedom Song so
people can listen and imbibe the meaning of freedom.