May 9, 2011
Philippine Democracy on Spotlight
Series of forums highlights the Philippines’ contributions
in the spread of democracy
As political upheavals continue in the Middle East, the Philippines
peaceful revolt in 1986 that toppled a dictator
becomes more significant to the world. As national elections in
neighboring countries in Southeast Asia grapple with uncertainties,
the political stability in the Philippines under
a Liberal President gets more attention. However, with the issues
of drug mules and smuggling, which are questions of human
rights and trade, can the Philippines really say that
it champions democracy?
These will be discussed as People Power veterans,
government leaders, academicians, and the media come together
for a forum series entitled Road to Manila: Shifting Gears
for Democracy. Three forums are scheduled on May 19,
May 26 and June 1 to analyze the influence of Philippine democracy
in the wave of demonstrations in the Middle East, and the country’s
role as a democracy anchor in Southeast Asia. Sec. Leila de Lima
of the Department of Justice
(DOJ), Prof. Felipe Medalla of the Foundation for Economic
Freedom (FEF), and Former Senator Wigberto Tanada will
answer how human rights and trade can be reconciled. Click
here for the full schedule.
“Human rights and free trade are pillars of liberal democracy.
The Philippines, under a Liberal Government, should ensure that
economic growth is achieved but not at the expense of human rights,”
said Jules Maaten, Country Director of the Friedrich Naumann Foundation
for Liberty (FNF). "I am also delighted that FNF Regional
Director Dr. Rainer Adam will also contribute to this series of
debates when we discuss the prospects of Asian democracy,"
FNF organizes the forums together with the Council
of Asian Liberals and Democrats (CALD), National
Institute for Policy Studies (NIPS), Ateneo
Human Rights Center (AHRC), and De
La Salle University (DLSU). The series of activities is in
to the Liberal International (LI) 57th Congress in Manila on June
16-20, 2011 where 300 liberals from all over the world are
expected to attend.