08 February 2010
Reference: Rep. Luz Ilagan, House of Representatives
Contact No. : 09209213221

Arrest of 43 health workers, foul and election-related – Gabriela Women’s Party
Gabriela Women’s Party decries the arrest of 43 health workers and professionals, 26 of whom are women, attending training seminar held by Council for Health Development (CHD) as foul. It is part of a design to revive anew the state’s attempt to link progressive partylists with the armed revolutionary movement.
“It is foul, truly a characteristic of the Arroyo regime.
“We can see through clearly the malicious intent behind this arrest. CHD and the participants of the said training are known supporters of the progressive partylists’ causes and have a long, fruitful history of delivering health services to many neglected areas. By tainting their reputation, this regime hopes to dissuade the people from voting for progressive candidates and party lists,” Rep. Luz Ilagan said.
The 300 heavily armed soldiers and policemen barged into the rest house of Dr. Melecia Velmonte in Morong, Rizal, where the training was being held, Saturday, February 6, 2010. Explosives and guns along with Bayan Muna campaign materials were purportedly found as the rooms were searched without the presence of witnesses.

“This only tells us that said ‘evidence’ was deliberately planted to provide grounds for the mass-arrest. These people are health care providers to the poorest areas, and Gabriela Women’s Party laments over the fact that 26 of the arrested are women. More so, it’s the women and children who most benefited from the services they provided,” Rep. Ilagan said. 
According to Ilagan CHD is among the partners of GABRIELA and GWP in their health programs for their local chapters nationwide.
Gabriela Women’s Party joins other organizations and sectors in demanding for the immediate, unconditional release of the 43 arrested health workers and professionals.
The party also expressed its indignation over the violation of the rights of the accused to their counsel of choice as they were subjected to ‘interrogation.’ It also fears that election-related violence could only escalate further if remains unchecked. #
Public Information Department
GABRIELA National Office
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GABRIELA Philippines
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E-mail: gabwomen@yahoo.com