Let us know who they are…

I received an invitation letter  from Philippine Embassy Charge D’ Affaires, Honorable Consul General Ezzedin Tago informing the community leaders that Philippine lawmakers particularly members of the Committee on Overseas Workers Affairs of the Philippine House of Congress will be visiting Saudi Arabia on the 8th to 13th of January 2011. It also mentioned that the lawmakers are going to meet two representatives each from various Filipino organizations in Riyadh.

The Visiting Philippine Legislators

The visiting Philippine legislators are Committee on Overseas Workers Affairs Chairman, Rep. Walden Bello, Vice Chair, Rep. Ma. Carmen Zamora-Apsay, Rep. Cresente Paez, and Rep. Emmeline Aglipay.
Like in the past, members of the Philippine Congress used to visit Saudi Arabia either for consultations or to review issues that are affecting the Overseas Filipino Workers and to decide how to resolve them. Upon their return back to their bench in the Hall of Congress they’re armed with ideas, present it to the Committee involved in crafting laws or policies for the good of the OFW sector in general. Therefore, they are important visitors because they are our voice, friends and advocates for the betterment of the Overseas Filipino Workers. So, I post this entry for us to know about them a little.
Rep. Walden Bello is a political analyst and a professor of sociology and public administration at the University of the Philippines Diliman. He became a political activist following the declaration of Martial Law by then-President Ferdinand Marcos.  Bello serves as the second nominee of political party list group Akbayan and chaired the Committee on Overseas Workers Affairs.
Rep. Ma. Carmen Zamora Apsay represent the 1st district of Compostela Valley, Davao. She is in her first term and hold the Vice Chairmanship of the Committee on OFW Affairs.  She is the daughter of former  Compostela Valley 1st district representative Manuel “Way Kurat” Zamora who became famous for biking his way to Congress.  She  was a two-termer provincial board member in Compostela and President of the Lady Local Legislators of the Philippines (Four-L) and the National Vice-President for Mindanao of the National Movement of Young Legislators (NMYL).
Rep. Cresente Paez, a second termer in the House of Congress is a sectoral representative of COOP-NATCCO (Cooperative NATTCO Network) whose party-list gathered 944,864 votes in the last election paving their way to have two seats in Congress.  Rep. Paez is the Party President of COOP-NATCCO Party list, the political arm of the cooperative sector. The party is focused on policy and legislative advocacy for comprehensive agrarian reform, rural development, housing reforms, cooperative development and local government autonomy. He graduated Bachelor of Science in Agriculture, major in agricultural engineering, University of Southern Mindanao, Kabacan, Cotabato, (formerly Mindanao Institute of Technology).
Rep. Emmeline Aglipay also in her first term as a sectoral representative of party list group DIWA (Democratic Independent Workers Association). DIWA garnered 239,029 votes in 2010 Philippine election which is  0.8026 % of the national votes allowing them to have one seat in Congress. When the Congress adjourns last month, Rep. Emelline Aglipay was one of those honored for having  perfect attendance or completed 45 session days in the 15th Philippine Congress. But not only that – she is at present the number 8 in the list as prettiest Pinay politician (click the list).  And as member of the Committee on OFW Affairs in Congress, she has the following pending House Bill: HB03193: AN ACT TO EXPEDITE THE PROCESS OF REPATRIATION OF FILIPINO MIGRANT WORKERS, pending with the Committee on OVERSEAS WORKERS AFFAIRS since 2010-09-21.


Joining them is Ms. Ellene Sana, Executive Director of Center for Migrant Advocacy,  a strong advocate of women ‘s issues and she was Akbayan party-list nominee in the 2010 election. She  is currently the Chief of Staff of Rep. Walden Bello in Congress. -end-

Source: Wikipedia, Philippine House of Congress Web site. Minda News, DIWA Website and MindaNews.

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