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by Justice for Filipino American Veterans (JFAV)
Tuesday, Aug. 01, 2006 at 2:33 PM
email@example.com 213-241-0906 337 Glendale Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90026
The Justice for Filipino American Veterans (JFAV)-USA supports Filipino veterans struggle in the Philippines and the United States against the Marcos-era decree that terminated the benefits of retired Armed Forces of the Philippines personnel who had acquired foreign citizenship and the counterpart measure seeking the repeal of Presidential Decree 1638 (or the AFP Military Personnel Retirement and Separation Decree of 1979) has yet to be filed in the Senate.
JFAV Supports the Repeal of Marcos Decree Against Filipino Veterans
Los Angeles- The Justice for Filipino American Veterans (JFAV)-USA supports Filipino veterans struggle in the Philippines and the United States against the Marcos-era decree that terminated the benefits of retired Armed Forces of the Philippines personnel who had acquired foreign citizenship and the counterpart measure seeking the repeal of Presidential Decree 1638 (or the AFP Military Personnel Retirement and Separation Decree of 1979) has yet to be filed in the Senate.
“JFAV Coordinator Al P. Garcia expressed that the sad plight of many undocumented cases of retired military officers and war veterans whose pensions were discontinued after they became US citizens is very appalling and discriminatory.”
Garcia explained: “ the Marcos decree punishes Filipino veterans who acquired American citizenship by removing their pensions and privileges that they are entitled too. Just the same, the Ramos decree that reaffirmed such unjust law also denied them their rights. It is a sad plight that Filipino veterans while they are treated as “second class citizens” in American are also being discriminated in their homeland.”
JFAV during their audience with Consul General Willy Gaa at the Los Angeles consulate last March 17, 2006 brought out this issue. Veteran leaders Jack Vergara, Franco Arcebal and Mariano Loria presented this problems to the consul general who is now the acting Philippine Ambassador to the United States. At present there are 11,000 Filipinos living in the U.S. and 54,000 living in the Philippines.
JFAV also believed that Senator Rodolfo Biazon, who chairs the Senate committee on national defense, plan to commission a study on the effects of PD 1638 on Filipino retirees and war veterans before making a decision on whether to file a bill repealing the law is too little and too late.”
“We( (the JFAV) do not share Biazon’s belief that they “have to study how extensive is the cost and how many are affected,” he said, adding that his foremost priorities at the moment were the passage of a number of measures, including one seeking a redefinition of veteran.”
Veteran’s party list representative Retired General Ernesto Gidaya who filed he bill to repeal the Marcos decree said HB 1561 seeks to entitle military retirees who had acquired foreign citizenship to continue receiving retirement benefits, thus amending Section 27 of PD 1638 which states:
“Military personnel retired under Sections 4, 5, 10, 11 and 12 shall be carried in the retired list of AFP. The name of a retiree who loses his Filipino citizenship shall be removed from the list [and his retirement benefits terminated upon such loss].”In lieu of the phrase enclosed in brackets, HB 1631 says: “But [they] shall be entitled to continue receiving [their] retirement benefits.”
“This is due to the recognition that their benefits accrued during their years of service when they were still [holding] Filipino citizenship,” Gidaya said, adding :“The approval of this bill will correct the inequitable aspects of PD 1638 and provide fairness and equal treatment to all concerned.”
For more information about JFAV and the veterans struggle for recognition, justice and equity please call (213) 241-0906 or email@firstname.lastname@example.org
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