Council of of Asian Asian Council Liberals & & Democrats Democrats Liberals
MESSAGE OF THE OUTGOING CHAIRMAN “Let us forever pass on the torch of freedom, democracy, human rights;
may the glory of Asia’s freedom and democracy illuminate the whole world!” As I hand over the great responsibility of CALD chairmanship to my successor, these words are the most determined aspiration and best wishes I want to share with all our friends in the Council of Asian Liberals and Democrats. In October of 2005, with the invaluable assistance from member parties and friends of CALD, Taiwan’s Democratic Progressive Party successfully completed its terms of service as the chair party and passed on the torch to the incoming chair party, the Liberal Party of the Philippines. When the DPP assumed the chairmanship of CALD in 2004, the DPP organized the conference “Democratic Consolidation and the Role of Political Parties” in Kaohsiung, Taiwan, with the collaboration of Liberal International, the Friedrich Naumann Foundation and the Taiwan Foundation for Democracy. With the chairmanship of the DPP, CALD organized pre-election missions to its member parties’ home countries, providing support to election campaigns of our allied parties. The DPP also welcomed CALD member parties to visit Taiwan to observe our parliamentary elections in December of 2004 and our county magisterial and city mayoral elections in December of 2005. Also through CALD, we spearheaded the promotion of Asia women’s participation in politics with the LI-CALD Women’s Workshop held in Taipei in October of last year. Furthermore, in order to enhance CALD’s organizational efficiency, the DPP sponsored a full-time Taiwanese resident staff and a local program officer to CALD’s Secretariat in Manila. With the DPP as chair party, CALD has continued its great tradition of advocating democracy and promoting liberalism for a free Asian society. Despite ups and downs and many challenges, our solidarity has kept democracy going in Asia. In these past two years, CALD passed important resolutions condemning the actions of military dictatorships in Asia such as calling for the restoration of Mr. Sam Rainsy’s parliamentary immunity
by the Cambodian government and regretting China’s legislation of nonpeaceful measures against Taiwan. With these great efforts by our CALD members, we have seen fruitful results, and we are happy to see that the voice of CALD has been heard throughout Asia. Although since October 2005, the DPP has handed over the responsibility as CALD’s chair party, we cherish the amazing experience of working with all of you. I believe the party that will shoulder the paramount responsibilities of being CALD’s chair party henceforth, the Liberal Party of the Philippines, brings to CALD a wealth of experience in Asian democratic politics. Therefore, I am fully convinced that under the leadership of Senator Drilon, the new CALD Chairman from the Liberal Party of the Philippines, and with the support and collective efforts of members of CALD, democratic movements in Asia will continue to flourish and scale new heights in the years to come.
H.E. President Chen Shui-bian CALD Chairman, 2004-2005
MESSAGE OF THE INCOMING CHAIRMAN During the 112th Inter Parliamentary Union (IPU) General Assembly in April
2005 in Manila, a meeting that I had the privilege of chairing, we raised our concerns regarding the deteriorating political situation in Burma and Cambodia. The Council of Asian Liberals and Democrats and the Liberal Party of the Philippines campaigned for Myanmar – better known as Burma — not to chair the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) until the military junta released Nobel Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi from house arrest. CALD and the LP also called for the restoration of the parliamentary immunity of exiled Cambodian leader Sam Rainsy and two of his colleagues. Several months later in Taipei, the CALD chairmanship was turned over by the Democratic Progressive Party of Taiwan to the Liberal Party of the Philippines. As many of you may be aware, the Liberal Party was facing political problems when it assumed the leadership of CALD. Nevertheless, we accepted this noble and challenging task with both humility and steadfast determination. A series of events that cast doubts on the legitimacy of Philippine President Gloria Arroyo led to our party’s difficult decision to withdraw support and to call for her resignation. This came at a great cost to our party but we were of the conviction that conscience must prevail over political convenience. An unfortunate consequence of the ongoing crisis is the division that hit our party. Taking into consideration the national political situation and party’s internal conflicts, LP could have opted to postpone the chairing of CALD until such time that the circumstances in our party and our country would have been more conducive. But so doing would be against the very nature, principles, and values by which CALD was founded more than 12 years ago in Bangkok by the Democrat Party of Thailand, the Democratic Progressive Party of Taiwan, the Malaysian People’s Movement Party, and our very own Liberal Party. It is in moments of crises when international solidarity is most needed. It is in trying times when principled leadership is absolutely essential. CALD and its member parties have stood the test of time, many times thanks to the support of one another.
Many of the key figures of CALD like Taiwanese President Chen Shuibian, former Korean President Kim Dae Jung, Sam Rainsy of Cambodia, and Martin Lee of Hong Kong have all gone through repression and political persecution. But all of them emerged from the crucible as stronger leaders. The Philippine Liberal Party has produced similar heroes in the persons of the late Senator Benigno Aquino Jr. and former Senate President Jovito Salonga. CALD has witnessed democratic transitions in countries such as the Philippines, Korea, Taiwan, and Indonesia. It has protested against political repression in Burma, Cambodia, and North Korea. It celebrated elections and electoral victories in Thailand, Malaysia, Korea and the Philippines. It cautioned against the erosion of democratic gains in many of these countries. Recent events show yet again the great need for outspoken democratic activism in Asia. Leaders of the Sam Rainsy Party of Cambodia have been stripped of parliamentary immunity, incarcerated or forced into exile, and convicted of trumped charges. In the Philippines, the president declared a state of emergency on the very day when we as a people were celebrating the 20th anniversary of the People Power Revolution. The Democrat Party of Thailand has taken up the cudgels against an unpopular prime minister faced with allegations of corruption. The exiled National Council of the Union of Burma contends with an even more repressive military regime. Dr. Chee Soon Juanâ€™s political activism in Singapore has resulted to his bankruptcy. This only means one thing: democracy is a continuing struggle and we must pay the price of eternal vigilance for its survival. CALDâ€™s success is its very essence: to fight for freedom, justice, and human rights in countries where these are wanting and to stand guard against the creeping forces of tyranny.
Senator Franklin Drilon President of the Philippine Senate President of the Liberal Party & Chairman of the Council of Asian Liberals and Democrats
Contents MESSAGE OF THE OUTGOING CHAIRMAN
MESSAGE OF THE INCOMING CHAIRMAN
CALD PROJECTS FOR 2005 : TIMELINE
CALD PROJECTS FOR 2005 CALD EXECUTIVE VISIT TO TAIWAN CALD @ IPU / SRP AND NCUB MANILA MISSIONS CALD EXECUTIVE MEETING AND VISIT TO BANGKOK 3RD CALD COMMUNICATIONS WORKSHOP LIBERAL INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S CONFERENCE AND CALD GENERAL ASSEMBLY SAM RAINSY PARTY MEETING IN MANILA CALD ELECTORAL OBSERVATION MISSION TO TAIWAN’S LOCAL ELECTIONS
8 10 14 16 18 22 24
SPEECHES DEMOCRACY IS THE BEST FOR ASIA by Senate President Franklin Drilon 99.9% OF WARS ARE STARTED BY MEN by Vice President Annette Lu FOREVER VIGILANT TO DEFEND DEMOCRACY by Senator Rodolfo Biazon
13 20 32
VISION OF THE LIBERAL PARTY OF THE PHILIPPINES FOR CALD AS THE NEW CHAIR PARTY
Projects Projects March/ April
CALD EXECUTIVE VISIT TO TAIWAN Taipei, Taiwan/ 18-19 March Delegates from CALD member parties were sponsored by the Democratic Progressive Party of Taiwan (DPP) to an Executive Visit to Taipei, highlighted by an audience with Taiwanese President Chen Shui-bian and followed by an Executive Committee Meeting.
CALD @ IPU / SRP AND NCUB MANILA MISSIONS Manila, Philippines/ 31 March - 8 April
200 20 The Council of Asian Liberals & Democrats (CALD) and the Liberal Party of the Philippines (LP) gathered liberal parliamentarians worldwide attending the 112th Inter Parliamentary Union General Assembly in Manila and hosted the parallel missions of the Sam Rainsy Party of Cambodia (SRP) and the National Council of the Union of Burma (NCUB), which sought to advocate reforms through inter-parliamentary cooperation.
CALD EXECUTIVE MEETING AND VISIT TO BANGKOK Bangkok, Thailand/ 16-17 June
Delegates from CALD member and observer parties met for a presentation of various political parties and for an audience with Democrat Party Thailand (DP) and Bangkok Metropolitan Authority (BMA) leaders. This was hosted by DP with the support of the Friedrich Naumann Foundation (FNF).
LI WOMEN’S CONFERENCE AND CALD GENERAL ASSEMBLY
Attended by mostly women parliamentarians, party officials and staff and focusing on the theme “Advancing Women in Politics: The Role of Political Parties”, the event consisted of the Liberal International Women’s Workshop for CALD members and observers, the CALD Executive Committee Meeting, the expanded women’s conference coinciding with the CALD General Assembly and the Handover Ceremonies of the CALD Chairmanship from DPP to LP followed by a dinner reception hosted by the Taiwanese President. This was jointly sponsored by the DPP, FNF, CALD and LI.
Taipei, Taiwan/ 12-15 October
3RD CALD COMMUNICATIONS WORKSHOP
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia/ 17-21 September Communications and media specialists from CALD member and observer parties gathered for this workshop focusing on political parties and the internet. This event was hosted by the Malaysian People’s Movement Party (PGRM).
SAM RAINSY PARTY EXECUTIVE MEETING
November / December
005 Manila, Philippines/ 13-16 November
SRP senior leaders including majority of its parliamentarians met in Manila with the support of CALD, LP and FNF. This was the first time that the party was able to meet since the self-imposed exile of its leader Sam Rainsy who was stripped of his parliamentary immunity.
CALD ELECTORAL OBSERVATION MISSION TO TAIWAN’S LOCAL ELECTIONS
Taipei-Changhua-Taichung, Taiwan/ 30 November - 4 December
This observation mission of Asian liberal political parties to the first ever Taiwanese 3-in-1 local elections was jointly sponsored by DPP and CALD. The five-day mission covered three cities.
CALD IN THE ASIA/EUROPE STRATEGIC PARTNERSHIP: THE FUTURE IS NOW Rome, Italy/ 1-3 December
CALD actively participated in this international dialogue between Asian and European Democrats focusing on “A New Europe/Asia Strategic Partnership: Challenges and Opportunities”. The three-day event was sponsored by the Italian La Margherita Party Democrazia E Liberta and the European Democratic Party.
CALD EXECUTIVE VISIT TO TAIWAN Taipei, Taiwan / 18-19 March
THE MATTERS on their agenda were routine, but members of the Executive Committee of the Council of Asian Liberals and Democrats who were in Taipei for a meeting soon found themselves contemplating the challenges to democracy in the region. The topic came up during their 18 March meeting with President Chen Shui-bian, then also CALD chairman, at the Green Room of the Presidential Palace in Taipei. Among many things, Chen spoke of his concern over the lifting or the parliamentary immunity of Cambodian opposition leader and MP Sam Rainsy – a former CALD chairman — that was the subject of CALD’s very first resolution for 2005. The Taiwanese leader also mentioned the controversial Anti-Succession Law passed just a few days before by the National People’s Congress in Beijing. The law stipulated that China would employ non-peaceful means and other necessary measures should Taiwan secede from the mainland. CALD delegation head MP Nereus Acosta, executive vice president of the Liberal Party of the Philippines, also expressed his concern about the “cloud of uncertainty shrouding the Taiwanese straits.” On behalf of CALD, he said the organization was steadfast about helping keep cross-straits relations peaceful and characterized by open and constructive dialogue instead of threats, intimidation, and the outright use of force. Acosta underscored as well the need to remain vigilant against threats to democracy in Asia.
The next day saw the CALD Executive Committee sitting down to its scheduled meeting to evaluate past projects and plan for the organization’s upcoming activities. Notably, though, it also unanimously passed CALD Resolution No. 2, S. 2005 that expressed regret over the endorsement of non-peaceful measures in Beijing’s Anti-Secession Law. (See Resolutions section) The meeting was presided by CALD Secretary General and Taiwanese MP Bi-Khim Hsiao. Party representatives were Ms. Maysing Yang and Ms. Huai Hui Hsieh, DPP; Philippine Liberal Party’s Dr. Nereus Acosta, MP; Dr. Buranaj Smuthraks, MP, of the Democrat Party, Thailand; Senator Ung Bun Ang of the Sam Rainsy Party, Cambodia; Dr. Chua Peng Song, MP, of the Malaysian People’s Movement Party (Gerakan); Dr. Chee Soon Juan of the Singapore Democratic Party; and Maung Maung of the National Council of the Union of Burma. The CALD Secretariat was represented by Executive Director John Joseph S. Coronel and Program Officers Brian Gonzales and Andrea Yang. The Friedrich Naumann Foundation was represented by Uwe Johannen, regional director for East and Southeast Asia, and Dr. Ronald Meinardus, resident representative (Manila).
CALD AT IPU / SAM RAINSY PARTY AND NATIONAL COUNCIL OF THE UNION OF BURMA MISSIONS TO MANILA Manila, Philippines / 31 March – 8 April
WHEN MANILA became the venue of a major gathering of the world’s biggest assembly of legislators during the Philippine summer, CALD kicked into high gear to ensure that its member parties would have as much interaction as possible with the liberals and democrats among the visiting parliamentarians. As a result, two beleaguered member parties in particular were able to have their respective causes highlighted, and garnered considerable support for these. On 8 April, the governing council of the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) unanimously adopted a resolution that, among other things, urged the military rulers of Burma (called Myanmar by the junta) to release all detained parliamentarians-elect and to “engage in a genuine dialogue with those who were elected in the 1990 elections.” The resolution also welcomed the initiative of a group of Southeast Asian legislators to establish an inter-parliamentary caucus on Burma and encouraged others to either join in or “take similar steps in their region.” CALD’s strategy to maximize for its members the impact of having the 112th IPU General Assembly in Manila included a high-level reception as well as hosting missions from Cambodia’s Sam Rainsy Party and the National Council of the Union of Burma at about the same time as the event. The opposition SRP was then experiencing undue pressure from the Hun Sen government, which had lifted the parliamentary immunity of party leader and MP Sam Rainsy, as well as his co-legislators and party mates Chea Poch and Cheam Channy. The NCUB, meanwhile, was as determined as ever to bring the Burma issue into the agenda of the United Nations Security Council and to keep the rest of the world aware that all was still not well in Burma, where opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi remained under house arrest while many of her colleagues were dying in prison. Members of the SRP and NCUB missions were thus present at the 2 April formal dinner-reception sponsored by CALD and the Liberal Party of the Philippines for liberal legislators attending the IPU assembly. Sam Rainsy spoke on behalf of CALD at the reception; he raised the issue of the lifting of his and his colleagues’ parliamentary immunity and warned that Cambodia could become another Burma that he said would result in Association of Southeast Asian Nations having “two, instead of one, headaches.” Still, he said, “because of the liberal family, I am not helpless and certainly, I am not hopeless.” The reception was attended by more than one hundred parliamentarians and diplomats from Angola, Bangladesh, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada,
Costa Rica, Cyprus, Denmark, Ecuador, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, Norway, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Slovac Republic, Slovenia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Ukraine, United Kingdom, and Uruguay. Welcome remarks were given by Philippine Senator Rodolfo Biazon and Thai MP Alongkorn Ponlaboot (Democrat Party), on behalf of LP Philippines and CALD, respectively. Giving the keynote address was Philippine Senate President and LP head Franklin Drilon, who focused on democratic challenges, particularly in the Philippines and the rest of Asia. Responding were Cyprus MP and former First Lady Androula Vassiliou, on behalf of the European Liberal Democratic Reform Party (ELDR), of which she is the vice president, and Norwegian MP Trine Skei Grande, on behalf of Liberal International. The event, which was covered by the Philippine media, was hosted by Philippine MP and CALD executive committee member Nereus Acosta. Both SRP and NCUB missions also held well-attended press conferences while the IPU assembly was going on. On 7 April, CALD sponsored a press conference for SRP, during which Sam Rainsy revealed that while he and his party mates were able to attend some IPU sessions, they were not able to do so as part of the official Cambodian delegation. “The Sam Rainsy Party would have very much wanted to participate in the discussions in IPU, but since we were not official delegates, we could not even speak,” he said. Noting the “effectiveness of international solidarity on the Burmese
issue,” the Cambodian opposition leader then made an appeal for international support that he said could help free jailed MP Cheam Channy and restore the parliamentary immunity he, Cheam Channy, and Chea Poch had lost. Philippine legislator Ruffy Biazon, meanwhile, read a statement of support from the LP. Signed by MP Acosta, the statement called for the “immediate restoration of the parliamentary immunity of Mr. Sam Rainsy and his colleagues and the immediate release of Mr. Cheam Channy.” Loretta Anne Rosales, chairperson of the Committee of Human Rights of the Philippine House of Representatives, vowed to raise the issue in the Philippine Congress. The SRP also participated in the press conference sponsored by the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Myanmar Caucus (see International Activities section), which had the party’s own Son Chhay, an MP, among its members. MP Saumura Tioulong of the SRP represented CALD at the Burma press conference, whose speakers included NCUB’s U Tint Swe. An exiled MP of the opposition National League of Democracy, U Tint Swe had earlier testified before the IPU Committee on Human Rights of Parliamentarians regarding the situation in his homeland. Philippine Senate Minority Floorleader Aquilino Pimentel Jr. later hosted a dinner-cum-press conference for the NCUB delegation in a Manila restaurant. This was the second NCUB mission to Manila and the first for the SRP. During one meeting with the visitors, Philippine Senate Majority Floorleader and LP Vice Chairman Francis Pangilinan commented that the first NCUB mission had been integral to the sustained and increased advocacy of the Burmese cause in both houses of the Philippine Congress. Aside from press conferences, both Burmese and Cambodian delegations had discussions with several Philippine legislators. The SRP also had a private audience with senior officers of the Manila-based Asian Development Bank while Sam Rainsy was interviewed by the Deutsche Presue-Agentur, the Philippine political magazine Newsbreak, and ANC News, a local TV program. Other members of the SRP Manila mission were Senator Ung Bun Ang, former Women’s and Veterans’ Affairs Minister Mu Sochua, and parliamentarians Yim Sovann and Chhai Eang. The NCUB delegation, for its part, included NCUB Secretary General U Maung Maung and exiled ministers U Bo Hla Tint, U San Aung, and Daw San San.
DEMOCRACY IS THE BEST FOR ASIA Speech delivered by Honorable Franklin Drilon, President of the Philippine Senate and the Liberal Party, during the dinner reception for Liberal Parliamentarians attending the 112th IPU General Assembly in Manila, Philippines / 2 April Indeed I am proud of the fact that the Liberal Party of the Philippines the oldest and second biggest political party in our country is one of the founders of the CALD and the first Asian member of Liberal International. We Liberals are proud of the fact that the Party was at the forefront in the arduous struggle for the restoration of democratic institutions during the country’s dark years. Under the dictatorship some Party members were even killed jailed and maimed in our fight for democracy that culminated in the bloodless revolution on EDSA in 1986. The EDSA revolution which inspired similar peaceful revolutions in Germany and other central European countries succeeded in affirming that power resides in the people. More than anything it was a testament to the Filipinos’ profound love for democracy. The new global order brings vast opportunities to create wealth. It also presents enormous challenges and risks. Now more than ever democracy is imperative. It is essential in the fight against corruption terrorism and poverty — global scourges that have corrosive effects on our society and people.
I submit that only in a democracy will the fight against these global scourges be more effective and meaningful because it is only in a democracy where accountability is required of public officials and institutions. It is only in a democracy where we can have a strong and independent judiciary and a resolute and vigilant media. Some may passionately argue that democracy is not an antidote to these ills and that curtailing some basic freedoms will help in curing these social infirmities. But I beg to disagree. I submit that democracy is not a panacea to the world’s ills much less Asia’s. But despite its institutional flaws I firmly believe that democracy is still the best for Asia and the rest of the world. There is no universal model of democracy. However we must pursue a democracy that is compatible not only with our cultural and social landscape but also with our collective aspirations for peace and development. Moreover we must constantly seek a balance between promoting peace and development and protecting individual rights and civil liberties. We must have a democracy that balances individualism and sense of community; a democracy where the will of the governed is the bedrock of a strong government. However it is sad to note that even if the past century was marked by the triumph of democracy when the Cold War ended it failed to emancipate the poor and de-
veloping countries of the South from the economic and political greed of the wealthy countries of the North. Ladies and gentlemen there is utter hypocrisy in wealthy countries that profess undying love for democracy but circumvent global trade rules at the expense of poor and underdeveloped countries. Friends, economic stability global peace and security will be difficult to attain in the 21st century if the clique of rich nations will continue to rig the trade game. The essence of democracy is the freedom to make economic political and social choices. But we see today nations mired in violence and ethnic conflicts miserably trapped in the economic and social quagmire. Efforts to promote democracy in these countries will fail if they are continuously subjected to trade-distorting farm subsidies and tariffs by the club of rich countries. Dismantling trade barriers is a thousand times better than giving them aid which most of the time will only end up in corrupt hands. As democracy-loving legislators we are together on this road to global peace and development. International cooperation is crucial in the fight against economic and social maladies that rob our children and the generations yet unborn of a bright future and deprive people of choices and opportunities. We must speak in one voice. We must act now.
CALD EXECUTIVE VISIT TO BANGKOK Bangkok, Thailand / 16-17 June
THE BANGKOK trip of the CALD executive committee was business mixed with pleasure as delegates tackled pending official matters as well as helped mark the 30th anniversary of the Friedrich Naumann Foundation (FNF) in Thailand. The visit, which had Thailand’s Democrat Party as overall host, kicked off with FNF’s anniversary celebration hosted by FNF boardmember and former German federal minister Dr. Imgard Schwaetzer. It also served as a farewell reception for retiring FNF regional director for East and Southeast Asia Uwe Johannen, as well as a welcome party for his successor, Hubertus von Welck. The following night, Johannen was feted again by his grateful CALD friends at the historic Suan Pakkad Palace, which had been the venue of various CALD activities in the past. Hosting the event was former CALD chairman M.R. Sukhumbhand Paribatra, MP, of the Democrat Party of Thailand. In a speech, Sukhumbhand cited Johannen’s contributions in the growth and development of CALD, and said that Johannen “has a home in Bangkok.” CALD Secretary General and MP Bi-Khim Hsiao of Taiwan’s Democratic Progressive Party meanwhile described Johannen as “an honorary Asian” who understood and appreciated the culture, sensitivities, and values of the people of the region. She said that CALD’s growth is evident by the fact that the organization is slowly getting less dependent on FNF. Johannen, for his part, highlighted CALD’s successes that he said were due to the commitment of individual liberal parliamentarians and party leaders. Largely because of them, he said, the organization has developed into a major player in Asia. The evening receptions actually became good respite from a full day of official activities for the delegates that included discussions about previous and upcoming CALD projects. There were also presentations from various political
parties and the Young Liberals and Democrats for Asia (YLDA) regarding their respective organizations. Significant and political developments that had national and regional impact were taken up as well. The CALD delegates also visited the headquarters of the Bangkok Metropolitan Authority in the heart of the city, where Bangkok Gov. Apirak Kosayodhin and Bangkok Metropolitan Council chairman Thana Cheeravinij spoke about the programs, projects, and legislative agenda they had for Thailand’s capital. The delegates also included Maung Maung, Daw San San, Dr. San Aung, and David Taw of the National Council of the Union of Burma; Mu Sochua, MPs Saumura Tioulong, Son Chhay, Yim Sovann, Eng Chhai Eang, and Senator Ung Bun-Ang of Cambodia’s Sam Rainsy Party; MPs Martin Lee and Sin Chung-kai of Hong Kong’s Democratic Party; HM Lukman Edy, Hermawi Taslim, Hanif Dhakiri of Indonesia’s Nation Awakening Party – PKB; Dr. Yasonna, and MPs H. Laoly, Hasto Kristiyanto, and Isma Yatun of the Indonesian Party of Struggle - PDI-P; Dr. S. Vijayaratnam of Malaysia’s Parti Gerakan Rakyat (People’s Movement Party); Dr. Noor Ahmed Akhtar and Asif Khan of Liberal Forum Pakistan; MP Nereus Acosta, Jose Luis Martin Gascon, and Concepcion Asis, Liberal Party of the Philippines; Dr. Chee Soon Juan of the Singapore Democratic Party; MPs Chung Euiyong and Dr. Kim Myung-ja, Uri Party of South Korea; Dr. Rajiva Wijesinha and Swarna Amaratunga of the Liberal Party of Sri Lanka; Dr. Buranaj Smutharaks, MP, Isra Sunthornwat, and Sirinun Senakant of Thailand’s Democrat Party; Andrea Yang of Taiwan’s DPP; Eko Darwanto and Anna Rosario Elicaño of YLDA; Dr. Rainer Adam, Dr. Ronald Meinardus, Ulrich Niemann, Dr. Wilfried Herrmann, Rainer Heufers of FNF; and John Joseph S. Coronel, Brian Gonzales, and Paolo Zamora of the CALD Secretariat.
3RD CALD COMMUNICATIONS WORKSHOP Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia / 17-21 September
IT WAS no secret that a digital divide existed among the countries in Asia, and this became all the more apparent during the 3 rd CALD communications workshop in which representatives from CALD member, associate, and observer parties participated. Yet by the end of the threeday workshop, it was also clear that divide or no divide, the Internet was going to play a key role not only in the parties’ political activities, but also in keeping the participants in constant contact with one another. Carrying the theme “Political Parties and the Internet,” the workshop, held at Malaysia’s capital, had the participants presenting their respective party’s website, which they then compared with that of their main rival. Those coming from more technologically advanced countries had the rest in awe, but it was the presentation of Korea’s Uri Party in particular that left the other parties all wired up to start or upgrade their own website. Talks by James Gomez on the impact of political-party websites and by FNF’s Dr. Ronald Meinardus on the successful online campaigns in Germany’s 2005 general elections also inspired the participants to further mine the potentials of the Net, as did visits to Malaysia’s famed Multimedia Super Corridor and to the offices of the resilient Malaysian online publication malaysiakini. In addition, the participants toured the headquarters of the workshop’s host, CALD member organization Parti Gerakan Rakyat Malaysia, where they met and had a brief discussion with party leaders, including Gerakan Secretary General and Malaysian Internal Security Deputy Minister Chia Kwang Chye. An early speaker at the workshop was FNF’s Project Director for Malaysia, Mr. Rainer Heufers, who briefed the participants about the liberal Foundation’s projects in that country. The excitement over cyberspace generated by the workshop seems to have ensured that long after leaving Kuala Lumpur, the participants would keep CALDCloggers, the weblog or blog they began there, active. Indeed,
the blog (http://caldcloggers.blogspot.com) has kept them in touch with each other, enabling them to share news about the political developments in their respective countries, as well as about the current activities of their parties. (See Media section) During the workshop, too, everyone agreed that CALD’s member parties should provide links to CALD and to one another. The apparently cyber-giddy participants suggested other tech-related topics for CALD’s future communications workshops, such as the marketing of websites, using short-message service or SMS as a political communication tool, and podcasting. At least five of the parties represented at the workshop already feature podcasts in their respective websites. The workshop participants were Ping-Ya Hsu (Democratic Progressive Party, Taiwan); Dr. Boonmark Sirinaovakul (Democrat Party, Thailand); Samuel Santos (Liberal Party, Philippines); George Kamal Wijetunga Nissanka (Liberal Party, Sri Lanka); Soe Aung (National Council of the Union of Burma); Wennie Wong Siew Ying and Lai Soon Ket (Parti Gerakan Rakyat, Malaysia); Hek Soknang (Sam Rainsy Party, Cambodia); Yap Keng Ho and Michael Cheng Seow Wee (Singapore Democratic Party); Samina Imtiaz (Liberal Forum, Pakistan); Jimmy Chun-wai Wong and Raymond Wai-man Lee (Democratic Party, Hong Kong); Jong Beam Woo (Uri Party, Korea); Widiyanto Saputro (PKB-Nation Awakening Party, Indonesia); E. Swastika Noorsabri (PDP-Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle); Anne Rosario Elicano (Young Liberals and Democrats of Asia); Deependra Chaulagain (Youth Initiative, Nepal); and Sok Vilay (Khmer Nation Youth Movement of the Sam Rainsy Party). FNF’s Dr. Meinardus and CALD Executive Director John Joseph S. Coronel facilitated the workshop. Narwin Espiritu of the FNF Philippine Office, CALD Program Officer Brian Gonzales, and Yeam Hui Nih of Gerakan made up the workshop secretariat.
LIBERAL INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S CONFERENCE/ 2005 CALD GENERAL ASSEMBLY Taipei, Taiwan / 12-15 October
ASIAN SOCIETIES are notorious for relegating women to the background, but in Taipei, at the 2005 CALD General Assembly, women were the focus of attention. The assembly had the theme “Advancing Women in Politics: the Role of Political Parties,” and kicked off with a day-long workshop aimed at women planning to run for political office, as well as at political-party staff and campaign workers. Based on the premise that political parties are the primary conduits to political participation, the workshop hoped to help women find support within their parties, overcome obstacles, and craft achievable action plans. As Taiwanese Vice President Annette Lu would later say in her keynote speech at the assembly’s formal opening, it was time that women broke away “from being the passive victims of history and become active participants in the making of ‘her story.’” “Borrowing from Nobel Laureate Amartya Sen’s concept in his book, Development as Freedom, women must become agents, and not merely beneficiaries, of democratization,” Lu would also say. “Women must share the power, rather than just sharing the benefits of these decisions.” CALD had teamed up with Liberal International to organize the event, which was the third in a series of activities done by LI in line with the “Win with Women” Global Action Plan. Women political leaders from 27 countries had initiated the plan, which was launched in 1993. Through the years, LI – of which CALD is a cooperating member — had emerged as one of the plan’s major implementers. Sarah Brinton and Victoria Marsom of the Liberal Democrats of the United Kingdom conducted the three sessions that made up the workshop. By the time it ended, the participants were ready to tackle more issues regarding women in politics in the general assembly, which was hosted by Taiwan’s ruling Democratic Progressive Party, with the support of the Friedrich Naumann Foundation and the Taiwan Foundation for Democracy. Cambodian legislator Saumura Tioulong of the Sam Rainsy Party gave the welcome address at the assembly’s formal opening, in which she noted that while CALD has grown strong and solid, the organization and its members could still expand “in terms of women’s participation and empowerment.” The assembly was divided into four sessions. Belgian State Minister and former LI president Annemie Neyts-Uyttebroeck gave the opening remarks, observing that working with individual women’s groups and having a gender-equality provision in a country’s charter may help ensure greater participation of women in politics. Speakers for the first session –
“Experiences and Best Practices by Women Politicians from Asia” – echoed this view, although Deutemduang Na-Chaingmai of Thailand’s Democrat Party also advised women to persevere and not be shackled by cultural norms dictating that they stay home. Session Two, which concentrated on “Strategies for Broadening Women’s Participation: Party Regulations and Legal Mechanisms,” had speakers sharing how efforts to increase women’s participation in politics continued to meet resistance from their male colleagues. Chinami Nishimura of the Democratic Party of Japan, however, cited an innovative approach adopted by her party, which has a fund dedicated for the use of female candidates. The catch is that the support is really a loan that is to be repaid once a candidate wins; this is so that there would be funds for other female candidates. In Session Three, “Supporting Women in Meaningful Leadership Roles: Getting There and Staying There,” speakers underlined the need for women themselves to push for change in attitudes and practices regarding their being at the helm. They also spoke of specific measures to bring about such changes, with the Sam Rainsy Party’s Saumura Tioulong citing Cambodia’s gender-training program that begins at the grassroots, and Yeh Yi-jin of Taiwan’s DPP noting the establishment of the Department of Women’s Development. Fittingly enough, the last session of the assembly focused on future plans for women in CALD. Moderated by CALD Secretary General Bi-khim Hsiao, the session saw the passage of CALD Resolution No. 5, which expresses a commitment to the “Win with Women” Global Action Plan and to the creation of a women’s wing in the organization. There was also a recommendation to form a task force that would develop an action plan for promoting women’s participation and empowerment in Asia. Attending the assembly were all full members of CALD: Democrat Party of Thailand, Democratic Progressive Party of Taiwan, Liberal Party of the Philippines, People’s Movement of Malaysia (Gerakan), Singapore Democratic Party, Liberal Party of Sri Lanka, the National Council of the Union of Burma, and the Sam Rainsy Party of Cambodia. Also present were CALD associate members Liberal Forum of Pakistan and the Young Liberals and Democrats of Asia, along with observers Uri Party of Korea, National Awakening Party (PKB) of Indonesia, Indonesia Party of Struggle (PDIP), Democrat Party of Japan, and Democrat Party of Hong Kong. Most of these parties and organizations participated as well in the workshop. Other moderators and speakers at the assembly included Dr. Rajiva Wijesinha, president of the Liberal Party of Sri Lanka; MP and former environment minister Kim Mjung-ja of Korea’s Uri Party; DPP international policy advisor and former Executive Yuan secretary general Liu Shyh-fang; Chee Siok-chin of the SDP; Krishna Bose of India’s Trinamool Congress Party; Anisah Mahfudz of PKB; Tan Lian Hoe of Gerakan; David Taw of the NCUB; and MP Henedina Abad of the Liberal Party of the Philippines. 19
“99.9% OF WARS ARE STARTED BY MEN” Abridged Speech of H.E. Annette Lu, Vice President of Taiwan during the CALD General Assembly in Taipei, Taiwan / 15 October The DPP is a founding member of CALD in 1993 and has been a member of Liberal International since 1994. In the 2000 executive committee meeting for Liberal International hosted by Taiwan, the delegates adopted the resolution on the elimination of gender discrimination, which stated in part that “the full and complete development of a country, the welfare of the world and the cause of peace require the maximum participation of women on equal terms with men in all fields.” With this goal in mind, I would like to talk about the role of women in Asia’s democratization. This past year, we have witnessed the great power of Mother Nature. From the tsunami in Southeast Asia, hurricanes in the United States and Central America, to the latest tragedy caused by the earthquake in South Asia. Similar to the great shift of the tectonic plates, the 21st century is a time of tremendous change where we witnessed traditional male-dominated political power structure being shaken in many of the countries around the world. Angela Merkel became the first woman chancellor in Germany. In Afghanistan,
Malalai Joya, a women activist, was named as one of the first winners the parliamentary election last week. In the Asia Pacific region, Prime Minister Helen Clark of New Zealand is set to begin her third term after the election last month. In Japan, Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi won one of the largest parliamentary majorities in modern Japanese history by including many young women politicians in this election, increasing the percentage of women in Japanese parliament by 26% from 34 to 43. As a matter of fact, there are currently four female heads of state in Asia, including Prime Minister Clark of New Zealand, President Arroyo of the Philippines, President Kumaratunga of Sri Lanka, and Prime Minister Zia of Bangladesh. These women are symbols of important gains in our struggles for gender equality in governance; however, it does not necessarily translate to greater political participation for women. According to the study by InterParliamentary Union, the percentage of women in parliaments of Asian countries is below the global average of 15.9%. Of these four countries headed by female, New Zealand has the highest percentage of women in its parliament at 28.3%. The Philippines, 15.3%, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka, however, each has only 2% and 4.9%, among the lowest in Asia. What is the role of women in Asia’s democratization? It is to change the paradigm in our approach to democratization
and democratic consolidation. Borrowing from Nobel Laureate Amartya Sen’s concept in his book, Development as Freedom, women must become agents, and not merely beneficiaries, of democratization. Women must share the power to make decisions, rather than just sharing the benefits of these decisions. Taiwan’s political miracle is not simply a result of economic prosperity. It is true that economic development in the 70’s and the 80s provided Taiwan with an educated middle class that is able to effectively stand up for its rights. Taiwanese women benefited from greater access to education. This allowed the women’s liberalization movement to gather steam and become an effective segment of the greater democratization movement. The feminist movement pushed the issue of gender justice to the forefront and brought in the other 50% of the population into the fight for democracy. Today, Taiwan’s democratic achievement, along with its economic prosperity, has won recognition and affirmation throughout the world. So how can we empower women in politics? To be empowered, women must enrich themselves with their own soft power of mercy, beauty, wisdom and courage. Mercy. Mercy is not weakness; rather it is compassion for the fellow human being around us. To show mercy is to embrace
the unfortunate, and to give hope for the hopeless. Mercy is the common language of humanity, and only with mercy can there be true peace. I have often said that 99.9% of the wars are started by men, not women. If more women make decisions in the world, it will be more peace. Beauty. There is a saying that “beauty is a woman’s scepter,” but beyond her own physical beauty, a women must also beautify her our surroundings, including her government. A recent study conducted by the World Bank shows a close correlation between women’s representation in parliaments and a decrease in the incidences of corruption. With more women in the government, politics will become cleaner, and nicer. With more women, politics can be beautiful.
Wisdom. There used to be a Chinese saying that “It is a virtue for a woman to be without any talent.” Obviously, this was used to keep generation of women out of power. Contrary to this notion, a woman’s best asset is her wisdom. Wisdom is transformation of information and knowledge through our life experiences. Instead of using our physical beauty to promote ourselves, we should rely more on our wisdom to attract and persuade. Courage. Courage is not blind fearlessness, but a commitment to the attainment of social justice. It is to speak up against what is wrong and to speak up for what is right. While some have described women as the weaker sex, we will not use our gender as an excuse. In our struggle for democratization, we see women risking their lives and sacrificing their own liberty for the sake of
others. The story of women’s struggle for democracy is the story of resilience and courage. It is with these four qualities that women will break away from being the passive victims of history (“his story”) and become active participants in the making of “her story.” Women must stand equally with men on the forefront of the “human story.” Mao Tseng-dong once said, “Women can lift up half of the sky.” Today, women in Taiwan are lifting up half of the sky. Democratization in Asia is not just history in the making, but also the making of “her story.” It is the collective stories of mothers, daughters and sisters – the stories of many courageous women who have come before us, and the stories of our fellow women activists to come.
SAM RAINSY PARTY MEETING IN MANILA Manila, Philippines / 15 November
MANILA BECAME a brief second home for Cambodia’s opposition Sam Rainsy Party when its leader and more than 30 of its most senior members had an official meeting in the Philippine capital in mid-November. In February, SRP head and former CALD chairman Sam Rainsy had been stripped of his parliamentary immunity, along with two other opposition parliamentarians. MP Cheam Cheam Channy has been in jail since; Sam Rainsy and Chea Poch escaped a similar fate only because they were abroad when they suddenly lost their parliamentary immunity. With two of its leaders unable to return to Cambodia without being arrested and the rest of its members subjected to intense pressure, the SRP decided to meet in Manila in what Sam Rainsy himself would describe as the largest gathering ever of Cambodian politicians outside of their homeland. After more than nine months of being unable to consult with his party mates, the opposition leader had deemed it time “to meet with my colleagues in order to exchange information and in order to coordinate what we are going to do in the near future.” He also remarked that it had not been “mere coincidence that we chose the Philippines. We have a lot of liberal friends in Manila.” Among those who attended the closed-door meeting were members of parliament and senators. Playing hosts to SRP were CALD and Friedrich Naumann Foundation. Said CALD Secretary General and Liberal Party of the Philippines Executive Vice President Nereus Acosta: “We in CALD and the LP are honored to have hosted the Sam Rainsy Party here in Manila during Sam Rainsy’s and his fellow oppositionists’ time of need. We remember the time of martial law, when (opposition leader) Ninoy Aquino was in exile in Boston and he received invaluable support from the international community.”
In a speech he gave at a dinner in honor of the SRP, CALD chairman and Philippine Senate President Franklin Drilon also noted, “Parliamentary immunity is not just a privilege extended to legislators to protect us from possible harassment in the course of doing our duties, whether in terms of creating laws or exercising oversight functions. It is integral to a working democracy, for it ensures the separation of powers. We Filipinos and Cambodians deeply understood that absolute power corrupts absolutely.” In response, Sam Rainsy thanked CALD, FNF, and the LP for their continued support and show of solidarity with his party. He also said, “We are looking up to the Philippines as a model. You have given not only to Asia but the whole world people power. The people power will inspire us and will inspire the whole of Asia to make sure that democracy will one day prevail on our continent and all over the world.” “(Even) though the days are difficult now, we have hope,” he added. “We have hope that democracy will prevail because there are people like the people of the Philippines who have been fighting for so long. I know that the struggle continues, but you have shown us the way. We will follow that way, even though Cambodia now, especially the Cambodian leadership, is not following that way.”
CALD ELECTORAL OBSERVATION MISSION TO TAIWAN’S LOCAL ELECTIONS Taipei - Changhua - Taichung, Taiwan / 30 November – 4 December
THE THIRD of December was a landmark moment in Taiwan’s electoral history and 15 delegates from CALD member and observer parties were there to witness it firsthand. For the first time, the Taiwanese elected their county magistrates, councilors, and provincial municipality mayors on the same day, an innovation that was introduced by Taiwan’s executive branch and supported by the Central Election Commission. It had been noted that frequent polls not only contributed to voter apathy, but also exacted a heavy financial burden on the citizenry. The CALD delegation actually arrived in Taipei a few days before the elections took place, and was briefed on Taiwan’s poll procedures before it blitzed through Taipei city and county, as well as Changhua and Taichung counties. Throughout their entire visit, delegates met campaign managers, rally coordinators, party workers, and volunteers of the ruling Democratic Progressive Party, which had jointly sponsored the mission along with CALD. The delegates went to campaign headquarters, joined in campaign rallies, and even visited a polling station. They also attended scholar seminars on Taiwanese elections, and the political and social impacts of these. In 2004, the DPP had invited a similar CALD mission to observe Taiwan’s legislative polls. A firm believer in political reforms, the DPP agreed with CALD that such missions provided venues for an exchange of campaign strategies and sharing of best practices. The CALD delegation this time around experienced these – and also saw an example of dignity in the face of defeat. The DPP proved unlucky in the magistrate election, and had its original 10 seats whittled down to six, prompting DPP Secretary General Su Tseng-chang to step down from his post. He said, though, “The party should humbly accept the outcome, modestly face it, honestly reflect, and bravely push new reforms.” The Liberal Party of the Philippines, which had assumed the CALD chairmanship from the DPP just two months before, sent a message of continued support for the DPP. The mission delegates included Dr. Ly Srey Vyna and MP Sovann Yim (Sam Rainsy Party, Cambodia); Verawati (Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle); Joe Nakano (Democratic Party of Japan); Tan Chuan Koon and Lim Si Pin (Malaysian Peoples’ Movement Party or Parti Gerakan Rakyat Malaysia); Henry Anden Bacurnay Jr. and Francisco Trinidad Sevilla Jr. (Liberal Party of the Philippines ); Yap Keng Ho (Singapore Democratic Party); Yeong Sul Kim and Pyong-Soo Lee (Uri Party of Korea); Jainudeen Cassim and Vaithlingam Shanmuganathan (Liberal Party of Sri Lanka); and LCdr. Sutham Rahong and Sirinun Senakant (Democrat Party of Thailand). The mission secretariat consisted of the DPP International Affairs Department’s Huai Hui Hsieh, Vincent Su, Lisa Tsai and Connie Chung, and CALD’s Paolo Zamora.
Resolutions Taiwan’s Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) and its invaluable contributions to the growth of the Council of Asian Liberals and Democrats (CALD) The rising threat of emergency rule in the Philippines The Singapore Government’s investigation of the filmmaker of Singapore Rebel CALD’s commitment to the Win With Women Global Action Program The assassination of the Sri Lankan Foreign Minister and CALD’s condolences and concerns Myanmar’s non-chairing of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) China’s Anti-Secession Law’s endorsement of the use of non-peaceful measures The restoration of the parliamentary immunity of Sam Rainsy and two other Cambodian oppositionists
Resolutions CALD RESOLUTIONS IN 2005
RESOLUTION NO.8 S. 2005 Acknowledges the invaluable contributions of the Democratic Progressive Party of Taiwan to the growth of the Council of Asian Liberals and Democrats; the exemplary leadership of DPP as CALD Chair Party; and congratulates President Chen Shui-bian for his inspired and dynamic leadership. RESOLUTION NO.7 S. 2005 Expresses concern over the rising threat of emergency rule in the Philippines and calling on the government to respect basic civil liberties, the separation of powers and the right to peaceful assembly and other rights embodied in the Philippine Constitution.
RESOLUTION NO.6 S. 2005 Notes that the Singapore Government has been investigating Martyn See for making the Singapore Rebel, a film about Singapore Democratic Party’s Secretary-General Chee Soon Juan, and that See has been called up for questioning by the police on two occasions and that his filmmaking equipment has been seized. RESOLUTION NO.5 S. 2005 Expresses its commitment to the Win with Women Global Action Plan and to the implementation of the plan’s four-point agenda; it also enjoins its member parties without a women’s wing to establish one; and commits itself to the creation of a CALD’s women’s wing in order to pursue the objectives of the said action plan and to further promote women’s participation and empowerment.
RESOLUTION NO. 4 S. 2005 Expresses its profound condolences to the family of the late Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar and to the people of Sri Lanka; enjoins the international community to denounce in the strongest terms his senseless and brutal murder and its perpetrators; and condemns the use of violence and other acts of terrorism in Sri Lanka and the rest of world RESOLUTION NO. 3 S. 2005 Expresses approval that Myanmar will not assume the chairmanship of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) in 2006; congratulates parliamentarians and NGOs worldwide—in particular from ASEAN member countries—for their steadfast commitment and action towards Burmese democratization; reiterates its call for the immediate and unconditional release of Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and other political prisoners; and reaffirming its commitment to the cause of Burmese freedom and democracy RESOLUTION NO. 2 S. 2005 Regrets the endorsement of non-peaceful measures in the passage of the Anti-Secession Law by China’s National Peoples Congress, and calling on a peaceful resolution of differences across the Taiwan Strait RESOLUTION NO. 4 S. 2005 Asks for the immediate and unconditional restoration of the parliamentary immunity of Messrs. Sam Rainsy, Cheam Channy and Chea Poch; and, the immediate and unconditional release of Mr. Cheam Channy from his detention
KEEPING CONNECTED AND UPDATED OLD AND new media kept CALD members and friends connected and in the know about the organization and with each other. For instance, CALDâ€™s reliable website (http://www.cald.org), which carries not only news about the organization, but also information about CALD and its member parties, was increased by 20 megabytes in 2005. Chapters covering the major projects for 2005 were added. The bi-monthly electronic newsletter Liberal News Asia that was launched in March 2004 meanwhile had seven issues for 2005, including one especially devoted to the launch of the web log began participants of the 3rd CALD Communications workshop. The blog, designed to look like a scroll, is called CALD Cloggers (http://www.caldcloggers.blogspot.com). So far, it has had participants comparing notes about political websites and IT advances, and sharing news about their respective organizations.
The CALD handover ceremonies held in October in Taipei may have also started a new trend in keepsakes, CALD-style. DVDs of the ceremonies have since been distributed among member and observer parties. The recording was made by the Office of the President of Taiwan and reproduced in Manila. Then there was the new multimedia presentation produced by the CALD secretariat. The presentation, with a running time of eight minutes, was written by Executive Director John Coronel, who also served as overall project coordinator. Assisting him were CALD Program Officers Paolo Zamora and Brian Gonzales, together with Narwin Espiritu, web developer of the Friedrich Naumann Foundationâ€™s Manila Office. Patrick Tan did the multimedia design while radio talent May Zayco served as narrator. The presentation features recorded messages from CALD Secretary General Bi-Khim Hsiao, MP, of the Democratic Progressive Party of Taiwan
and former CALD chairmen Sam Rainsy, MP, leader of the Cambodian opposition; M.R. Sukhumbhand Paribatra, MP and former deputy foreign minister, of the Democrat Party of Thailand; and Florencio Abad, former education secretary and parliamentarian, of the Liberal Party of the Philippines. Also featured is Dr. Sein Win, prime minister of the exiled National Council of the Government of the Union of Burma. The presentation tackles CALD’s history, objectives and visions, and programs and projects, as well as its impact in the development of liberal democracy in the region. It is CALD’s second multimedia presentation, the organization having launched its first such material in December 2003 in Bangkok, Thailand, during the celebration of CALD’s 10th foundation anniversary. The 2005 edition was previewed during the 3rd CALD Communication Workshop in Kuala Lumpur, and had its major launch during the Liberal International Women’s Conference and CALD General Assembly in Taipei. Taking on a more traditional form was CALD’s 2004 annual report, which was produced as a brochure. Its first public distribution occurred during the LP-CALD Dinner for Liberal Parliamentarians during the 112th Inter Parliamentary Union General Assembly, and then was extensively distributed in succeeding events. The 48-page report contains messages from the CALD Chairman and Secretary General; a report on each of the nine projects CALD held in 2004; a summary of the resolutions passed in that year; an article on electoral victories of CALD member and observer parties; a review of the publication Asian Political Parties; an article on the turnover of the CALD chair party position from DP Thailand to DPP Taiwan; updates; a feature on YLDA; and, the comprehensive list of speakers and resource persons of CALD’s 2004 activities.
PASSING THE TORCH THE HISTORIC Taipei Guest House witnessed yet another important CALD event when Taiwanese President Chen Shui-bian, also the head of the ruling Democratic Progressive Party, on 14 October turned over the chair partyship of the Council to the Liberal Party of the Philippines. In so doing he handed over as well the chairmanship of CALD to Philippine Senate President Franklin Drilon. When he became CALD chairman in 2004, President Chen made history by becoming the very first chief executive to head the organization. His and the DPPâ€™s term at CALD saw the Council passing resolutions aimed at protecting and strengthening democracy in Asia. CALD was also kept busy attending and arranging events that pushed the liberal agenda, such as those it organized during the 112th Inter-Parliamentary Union General assembly in Manila in April. The handover ceremonies themselves capped a groundbreaking Liberal International workshop and CALD general assembly that focused on women in politics. Philippine Senator Rodolfo Biazon, who represented Senator Drilon at the turnover rites, thus declared that the LP had â€œa pair of big shoes
to fill.” In accordance with CALD rules, the LP will chair the Council for two years. In his acceptance speech on behalf of incoming CALD Chairman Drilon, Biazon made it clear that the Council would continue what it had been doing under the DPP and other former chair parties. Quoting Drilon, he said, “As Asians, we must chart the course of our political destiny. We can start this journey by building an Asian democratic tradition. The challenge is now for us to show our friends in the West that democracy works in Asia. Serving as masters of ceremonies at the handover ceremonies were Taiwanese MP Bi-Khim Hsiao and Philippine MP Nereus Acosta, outgoing and incoming CALD secretaries general, respectively. It is the LP’s second time to be at the CALD helm, having chaired it from 1998 to 2000. Two other member parties have become CALD chair twice, the first being the Democrat Party of Thailand in 2000, and then the DPP in 2004.
FOREVER VIGILANT TO DEFEND DEMOCRACY Acceptance Speech of Senator Rodolfo Biazono in behalf of the Liberal Party of the Philippines’ chairmanship of CALD during the hand-over ceremonies in Taipei, Taiwan/ 14 October As many of you may have known, the Philippines hosted in April this year the 112th IPU General Assembly. Apart from hosting a gathering of liberal parliamentarians from all over the world in that assembly, CALD and the Liberal Party held side events and activities and sponsored the missions of two CALD member parties in crisis: the Sam Rainsy Party of Cambodia and the National Council of the Union of Burma. Thus, in the IPU, we put forth two crucial issues: The deteriorating situation in Burma, especially with the continued detention of Nobel laureate Daw Aung San Suu Kyi; and the lifting of the parliamentary Immunity of Cambodian oppositionist Sam Rainsy and his two colleagues. Side by side with ASEAN parliamentarians— in particular the liberal legislators from Malaysia, Thailand and the Philippines—we lobbied against Myanmar’s chairing of the ASEAN in 2006. In the last eleven years, CALD has served as a forum of liberal minded parliamentarians and political parties. In this regard, CALD is becoming more and more a significant advocate of democracy, good gov-
ernance, peace and development in the region, as we increasingly share experiences and best practices in every opportunity we are given. Asia is home to ancient cultures, but nevertheless has a young history as a continent of democratic nations. Many of us come from countries that suffered colonial occupation and endured oppression in the hands of our own countrymen. Taiwan, like the Philippines, suffered under decades of Martial law. And we, Taiwanese and Filipinos, can very well relate to each other, in connection to that common experience of struggle to free ourselves from the chains of authoritarian regimes. I therefore publicly express my admiration to the Democratic Progressive Party of Taiwan, whose members have either given up their own personal welfare, or have given no less than their lives to the cause of democracy. Similarly, my party, the Liberal Party of the Philippines, played a crucial role in our country’s quest to regain freedom and democracy from the Marcos dictatorship. Like the DPP, members of our party paid dearly to fight for our rights. One of them was martyred hero Senator Benigno Aquino Jr., who was the party secretary general when he was gunned down at the Manila airport in 1983. By coincidences, Benigno Aquino III, the only son of our hero and former President Corazon Aquino, is currently the secretary-general of the Liberal Party. While there may be truth in saying that history repeats itself, but there are things
in the past that we should not allow to happen again. We in CALD must not only fight for democracy. We must remain and forever be vigilant to sustain it. Thus, we dare say “Never again!” to the reign of foreign oppressors and local tyrants. Please allow me to echo the sentiments of Philippine Senate President and incoming CALD Chairman, and I quote: “As Asians we must chart the course of our political destiny. We can start this journey by building an Asian democratic tradition. The challenge is now for us to show our friends in the west that democracy works in Asia. Notwithstanding the colossal challenges facing us, we must continue to seek a common definition of democracy that is compatible not only with our cultural and social landscape, but also with our collective aspirations for peace and development. Democracy that balances individualism and sense of community; democracy where the will of the governed is the bedrock of a strong government.” Before I end, allow me to congratulate the Democratic Progressive Party for its sterling performance as CALD chair party for the past two years. We just found ourselves a pair of big shoes to fill. Therefore, with great honor and humility, the Liberal Party of the Philippines accepts the tasks as the new chair party of the Council of Asian Liberals and Democrats. As chair party, we pledge, to the best of our abilities, to protect the noble organization that it has made of itself.
VISION OF THE LIBERAL PARTY OF THE PHILIPPINES FOR CALD AS THE NEW CHAIR PARTY By Dr. Nereus Acosta, MP Incoming Secretary General of CALD, Executive Vice President of the Liberal Party of the Philippines We set forth this 2005 CALD REPORT with a rather pronounced mixture of hope and trepidation. When the Liberal Party of the Philippines led by Senate President Drilon assumed the position of CALD Chair Party from Taiwan’s Democratic Progressive Party led by President Chen Shui-Bian last October, the Philippines was in the throes of a deep political crisis that centered around serious charges of electoral fraud and corruption against a sitting president.
Philippine body politic includes the recent break-up of the Liberal Party. In July last year the Liberal Party made the painful decision to withdraw from the ruling coalition and called for the resignation of President Arroyo. In early March this year, another group of LP officers and members associated with the president conducted a rump assembly to elect a putative set of new officers, disregarding party procedures and by-laws. More than the tensions over the legitimacy of Arroyo’s presidency, this fissure reflects the fundamental differences in defining the template LP must use in the larger challenge of creating alternative and more fully democratic political formations and more reform-driven and stronger institutions.
Congress underwent wrenching, albeit aborted, impeachment proceedings against President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo last year, which mirrored deep divisions in society over pressing questions of legitimacy and public accountability. The political crisis has persisted, heightened in sheer irony by the declaration of a state of emergency on the 20th anniversary of the 1986 People Power uprising that peacefully overthrew the dictatorship of Ferdinand Marcos. In the face of warrantless arrests (including some members of the Philippine House of Representatives), threats to press freedom, a crackdown on public rallies and protests, Freedom House has downgraded the Philippines from “free” to “partially free.”
The persistent challenges we face in CALD and its member parties – notably Burma’s NCUB, Cambodia’s Sam Rainsy Party, and indeed, the LP – are thus set in stark relief as we clearly recognize that democracy is a never-ending work or process in courage and vigilance. Moreover, the mass protests against large-scale corruption in the Thaksin government in Thailand, Taiwan’s resistance to threats from mainland China vis-à-vis its democratic self-determination, and the Singapore Democratic Party’s ardent search for more open mechanisms for debate and dissent, underscore the continuing struggles we all need to wage and sustain in our societies and in the entire region to secure basic freedoms, the rule of law, a clear respect for human rights, and social justice.
It is unfortunate that the political fallout of this crisis that has ravaged the
That is why 12 remarkable years into our work as Asia’s first regional organization
of political parties, we continue to learn and profit richly from our respective experiences and histories. We express solidarity and unflinching support for those of us in grave need or crisis – whether it be Nobel Peace Laureate Daw Aung Suu Kyi’s continued detention and Burma’s odious repression, Sam Rainsy’s loss of parliamentary immunity or Chee Soon Juan’s valiant fight against state-imposed bankruptcy. Most importantly, we draw great strength from one another and in the common bonds we forged and built on since our founding in Bangkok in 1993. These are the bonds of a collective commitment and vision for a fully democratic and free Asia. These constitute a steadfast faith we keep in the CALD in the inherent dignity of citizens all over the region to stand up for truth, justice, and freedom. It is a faith and conviction our liberal-democratic parties enshrine in the boundless capacities of our peoples to chart their democratic destinies and shape the bright future of Asian Democracy in an Asian Century. Our tireless work in CALD continues this year and beyond. Our electoral successes and triumphs notwithstanding, CALD will advance party-building and expand partnerships with liberal-democratic parties in other Asian countries. CALD will uphold democratic activism and face down forces of tyranny in any shape or form. We know we are up to the challenge and our unstinting commitment to democracy and freedom will prevail. MABUHAY ANG DEMOKRASYA AT KALAYAAN! Long live democracy and freedom!
NEW ASSOCIATE MEMBER THE YOUNG Liberals and Democrats of Asia (YLDA) has become CALD’s second associate member after the CALD executive committee accepted its application as such on 13 October. YLDA, which was established as an offshoot of the CALD Young Leaders Workshop in Manila (2002) and Phnom Penh (2003), is the regional network of Asian liberal youth wings, organizations, and individuals. The CALD membership committee chaired by MP Sauumura Tioulong of Cambodia’s Sam Rainsy Party and with members MP Nereus Acosta of the Liberal Party of the Philippines and Chee Siok Chin of the Singapore Democratic Party endorsed YLDA’s application to the CALD Execom after conducting a thorough interview of YLDA President Jonathan Malaya. In approving the group’s application, the CALD Execom noted YLDA’s excellent track record, participation in CALD events, and adherence to the CALD’s principles and objectives.
In response, Malaya remarked, “By admitting YLDA, CALD recognizes the vital role young people play in the socio-political life of Asia and considers the youth as partners in the common objective of spreading liberalism across the continent.” CALD’s other associate member is the Liberal Forum of Pakistan.
FROM DPP TO CALD, TO DPP SHE WAS the only female in the CALD Secretariat, but Andrea Yang more than kept up with the rest. Yang’s one-year term as CALD program officer came to an end, and the secretariat had to bid goodbye to its first expatriate staff member since Manila became its permanent site in January 2000. A 2004 sociology and political science graduate of the Australian National University, Yang’s CALD posting had been made possible by a grant from the Democratic Progressive Party of Taiwan. Yang was born in Taiwan but emigrated with her family to Australia when she was 16 years old. Years later, a Christmas holiday in Taiwan led to an introduction to the DPP, where she would intern. Yang participated in many CALD activities while she was one of its program officers. In January, she and fellow CALD program officer Brian Gonzales attended the Philippine Senate hearing on Burma. Five months later, she was in Washington, D.C. as one of the participants in the DPP’s annual training program in the U.S. capital.
Following her stint at CALD, Yang returned to Taiwan to be part of the staff of the DPP’s Department of International Affairs in Taipei.
PARTYING INTO 2005 THANKSGIVING FOR 2004 and optimism for the year ahead marked the New Year’s reception jointly hosted by CALD and the FNF Manila office on 14 January. In a short speech, CALD Executive Director John S. Coronel noted that 2004 had been a successful year for the organization, which marked at least two firsts in its 11-year history: the first time an incumbent president – Taiwan’s President Chen Shui-bian – became its head, and the first time a major CALD event was held outside Asia (during a meeting between eminent Asian and European liberals and democrats at the European parliament). Coronel said that the fact that an organization like CALD was thriving “serves as a living testimony that the values of peace, justice, human rights, freedom, and democracy are not only universal, they are deeply ingrained in various Asian cultures, traditions, and religions.” FNF Manila Resident Representative Dr. Ronald Meinardus noted the strengthening of relations between the Foundation and the Liberal Party of the Philippines, as well as with its think tank, the National Institute for Policy Studies (NIPS). FNF then presented a plaque of appreciation to Eleazar Quinto for his services as immediate past director general of the LP. Friends and associates from the diplomatic corps, civil society, media, the academe, and the political arena graced the party, which was held at the FNF-CALD office in Makati City, Metro Manila. The get-together became a reunion of sorts for CALD stalwarts and conference and workshop speakers like LP Executive Vice President and MP Nereus Acosta, Philippine education undersecretary Chito Gascon, NIPS President Mario Taguiwalo, former Philippine finance secretary Ernest Leung, Newsbreak magazine editor in chief Marites Vitug, and advertising executive Marlyn Villapando of Campaigns and Grey. Also among the guests were Fernando Peña, board vice chairman of the Initiaties for International Dialogue, LP Director General Chit Asis, and Philippine Commission on Appointments Secretary Arturo L. Liu. LP newcomer Grace Padaca, first-term governor of the Philippine province of Isabela was among the partygoers as well. Considered a symbol of principled and reform-oriented politics, the young governor had defeated the scion of a politically entrenched clan that had ruled her province for decades.
CALD INTERNSHIP PROGRAM TO EUROPE THREE YOUNG liberals became CALD’s 2005 interns to the European Parliament, with each spending a month doing parliamentary work in the EP in Brussels, Belgium and Strasbourg, France and research and advocacy initiatives in select European nongovernment organizations. Organized by the Alliance for Liberals and Democrats (ALDE) and the International Political Dialogue of FNF, the internship program had previously given four youths from CALD member parties the opportunity to work briefly in the EP. Despite their short stints, all three 2005 interns came home describing their experience in Europe as “educational and mind-opening.” First up had been Charles Tan, president of Young Democrats (the youth wing of the Singapore Democratic Party) and a 27-year-old Singapore Polytechnic graduate. One of the participants in the 2nd CALD Young Leaders Workshop in Phnom Penh, Cambodia (October, 2003), Tan works as a marketing support executive in Singapore when he is not busy with politics.
Following him to Europe was Yeam Hui Nih, executive secretary for the International and Ethnic Affairs Bureau of the Malaysian People’s Movement Party. The 26-year-old is a Bachelor of Arts (Hons) from the National University of Malaysia, majoring in mass communication (public relations) and minor in political science. She had previously worked as a primary school teacher and with two NGOs including SEDAR Institute, the party’s think tank. After her European internship, Yeam became of the working secretariat of the 3rd CALD Communication Workshop that was held in September in Kuala Lumpur. The third intern was Kemchitra Chatraporn, research analyst at the Democrat Party’s Research and Development Information Centre. At 26, Kemchitra already has an M.A. in Organisation Studies at Warwick Business School, an M.S. in Training and Human Resource Development at the University of Warwick; and a B.A. Political Science at the Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok. In 2003, she was a member of the working secretariat of the
CALD 10th Anniversary Conference that focused on current political challenges for economic growth in Asia, which was hosted by the Democrat Party of Thailand. Tan was assigned to the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs, Yeam to the Committee on Culture and Education, and Kemchitra to the press group. In her report submitted to CALD, Kemchitra said she realized that the press in parliament not only has the duty to ensure transparency in the body but also has to “deliver the message from the political groups to the parliament…and public.” She also said working with ALDE contributed to her deeper understanding of how democracy functions in an international level. Tan, meanwhile, wrote, “Working with the ALDE as a stagiaire strengthened my belief as a liberal. This is the conviction that an individual should be afforded maximum freedom unless the action or views hurt others; the freedom and rights in any sphere whether political, economic or otherwise; of which comes along with personal responsibility. More importantly, liberals practise tolerance, a readiness to accept views or actions that one disagrees or disapproves, which is a fundamental principle in any liberal democracy.” Yeam, for her part, had this observation: “The European Parliament’s effort to invite parliamentarians and leaders from other countries to discuss on International issues is highly commendable and welcome. The discussion of global issues, conducted in an open-minded manner, showed how concerned are the European Union Parliament toward the well-being of other countries. The dialogue helped them address issues together through interchanging of ideas from the participating countries. As a comparison, our Malaysian Parliament is more conservative. Only issues of local interests are discussed and debated by the Malaysian Parliamentarians. Therefore, a more open-minded approach should be practiced by the Malaysian government in order to show our concern on the global issues.”
INTERN FROM YALE THE MANILA-BASED CALD Secretariat temporarily gained an extra pair of hands with the arrival in October of Matt Sherwin, a recent graduate of the prestigious Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut. The multifaceted 22-year-old had received his bachelor of science degree – majoring in ethics, politics, and economics, as well as in molecular biophysics and biochemistry – with distinction. Sherwin became part of the documentation team of the Liberal International Women’s Workshop and 2005 CALD General Assembly in Taipei. He will also assist the CALD secretary general during the international conference on “Public Accountability in Overseas Development Assistance” in Siem Reap, Cambodia scheduled for April 2006.
Sherwin was the Summer Intern of the New York-based Gerson Lehrman Group (financial information services), Vice President of Yale Entrepreneurial Society, and Founding Director of Scholar Partners, which sought to provide university instructors with customized digital audio lectures. His nonprofit activities included a stint as treasurer of the Hillhouse Scholars Program and at a council at the St. Thomas More Catholic Chapel in Yale. He was co-founder of the Niebuhr Forum on Religion and Public Life and assistant to the founder of the Iraqi Health Research Institute.
ASEAN Interparliamentary Myanmar Caucus CALD RELIAL Workshop in Sofia DPP Mission to the Thai Elections Visit of Le Margherita to Bangkok and Manila CALD in Rome, Italy Community of Democracies Participation of CALD Program Officers in various Conferences
“NO” TO BURMA AS ASEAN CHAIR NOT CONTENT with hosting a delegation from its member party the National Council of the Union of Burma during the 112 th Interparliamentary Union General Assembly in Manila, CALD also signed the 2 April resolution of the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Caucus (AIPC) that declared “No ASEAN chairmanship for Myanmar without freedom for Aung San Suu Kyi!” The NCUB delegation timed its Manila visit to campaign against Myanmar – the name given to Burma by the ruling military junta – assuming the chairmanship of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations in 2006, among other things. But CALD upped the ante by signing the resolution on 7 April and joining a widely attended press conference in Manila where legislators from three ASEAN member countries (the Philippines, Malaysia, and Cambodia) and the European Union called for the release of Nobel Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi from house arrest and for political reforms in Burma. Prior to the opening of the IPU assembly, CALD had also participated in the launch of the Philippine Parliamentary Caucus on Myanmar and the meeting of the AIPC. Representing CALD were officials of three of its member parties, the Liberal Party of the Philippines, the NCUB, and the Sam Rainsy Party of Cambodia. Speaking for CALD at the press conference, MP Sauumura Tioulong of the Sam Rainsy Party and CALD executive committee member noted that “Myanmar committed to abide by certain principles of democratic governance specified by (ASEAN) as prerequisite of membership in the organization in 1997.” But she said that there has been “a political and humanitarian crisis” in Burma since, “brought about by gross violations of the basic human rights of the people…including the detention of members of parliament and the denial of their civil and political rights.”
“The chairmanship of ASEAN cannot be given to Myanmar in 2006 without systematic and irreversible political reform, as it will negatively affect ASEAN and its members,” she also said. “Therefore we support the call of the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Myanmar Caucus demanding the release of Aung San Suu Kyi and other political prisoners, in particular members of parliament, as well as substantial and measurable political reform as prerequisites for Myanmar’s accession to the chairmanship of ASEAN in 2006.” As mentioned earlier, Myanmar later voluntarily relinquished its turn at chairing ASEAN in 2006. (See Projects and Resolutions sections)
SOLIDARIDAD! NETWORKING WITH LATIN AMERICAN LIBERALS THEY WERE there primarily to attend the 53rd Congress of the Liberal International in Sofia, Bulgaria in May, but delegates belonging to CALD and the Liberal Network for Latin America or RELIAL also took the opportunity to have a workshop together. The workshop, called “Results of and Challenges for Regional Cooperation in Asia and Latin America,” was initiated by RELIAL, which chose CALD with which it could exchange information and points of view on how to have a successful regional network. A relatively young organization, RELIAL was officially launched in Costa Rica only in November 2004. It includes almost 20 liberal institutions – among them political parties, think tanks, foundations, and research institutions — from 12 Latin American countries. At the workshop, which took the form of a roundtable discussion, RELIAL was represented by Julio Dario Burdman, permanent secretary of the Argentinian party RECREAR; Luiz Alberto Ferla, president of the Institute of Advanced Studies and member of the national directorate of the Liberal Party of Brazil; MP Peter Guevara Guth of the Liberal Party of Costa Rica; MP Onyx Lorenzoni, president of the Liberal Party of Brazil in the province of Grande do Sul; Belinda de Martinez Boquin, general secretary of the Liberal Party of Honduras; Cristian Estuardo Mayorga Martinez of the Reform Movement of Guatemala; Maria Eugenia Sequeira of the Liberal Party of Nicaragua; and Martin Simonetta, executive director of the Atlas Foundation in Argentina. CALD was represented by its secretary general Bi-Khim Hsiao, MP, of Taiwan’s Democratic Progressive Party; MP Nereus Acosta, executive vice president of the Liberal Party of the Philippines; and Dr. Rajiva Wijesinha of the Liberal Party of Sri Lanka. Among the best practices shared by CALD at the workshop were: how to organize efficient networking, how to involve members of the network, and how to share responsibilities and tasks. Observers from Friedrich Naumann Foundation-South America and Liberal International were present during the roundtable discussion. CALD is a cooperating member of LI, which counts three CALD member parties, including the chair party, the DPP, among its members. The participation of the CALD delegation in the Sofia events was supported by the DPP. CALD considers the workshop with RELIAL as an indication that it has become a model on how to have a good regional network of political parties. 41
TAIWAN’S DEMOCRATS IN THAILAND IN FEBRUARY, Taiwan’s ruling Democratic Progressive Party observed up close yet another example of democracy in action in another country. In the previous year, the DPP had gone to look at pre-election activities prior to the presidential polls in the Philippines, and then in Indonesia. This time around, the subject was the parliamentary elections in Thailand. The 14-member DPP delegation was headed by legislator Lan Mei-Chin. CALD program officer Andrea Yang was also part of the mission. The three-day (4-6 February) mission had the DPP team visiting Chulalongkorn University’s Asian Research Center and two polling stations, and attending a Democrat Party campaign rally. The Taiwanese Democrats also had meetings with several DP members, as well as with Vice Minister for the Interior Kwang Robkob, adviser to the prime minister Dr. Kradse Chanawongse, and Thai Rak Thai MP Suhum Laowansiri (another adviser to the premier), along with other legislators. The DPP delegates were particularly interested in Thailand’s “singledistrict, two-votes” system, which Thai politicians had deemed as a set-up that was most fair and most democratic for their country. The DPP team later described its pre-election visit to Thailand as constructive, since it enabled its members to exchange valuable ideas with their Thai counterparts. The DPP believes that the democratic achievements in Asia have made the future of regional security and economic prosperity more promising. It has vowed to remain a close observer of democratic developments in the region.
CIAO AMICI! CALD FORGES FRIENDSHIP WITH ITALIAN DEMOCRATS THE TWO-man delegation from Italy’s La Margherita-Freedom and Democracy Party had only very brief visits in Bangkok and Manila in June, but the contacts they were able to establish are bound to last for years to come. Earlier in the year, MP Gianni Vernetti, head of La Margherita’s international relations department, wrote to CALD asking if it would be possible to meet with representatives of Asian political parties. Apparently La Margherita and the European Democratic Party were gearing to focus on Asia, and thus wanted to build links with democratic, progressive, and reformist political parties – such as those represented in CALD. In February, the EDP had set up the Alliance of American and European Democrats after touching base with the U.S. Democrats. CALD did not disappoint its Italian friends, who were also visiting New Delhi and Tokyo. On 10 June, Vernetti and partymate Luca Bader were warmly received by the Thai Democrat Party in its Bangkok headquarters, with no less than MP Surin Pitsuan, who was former Thai foreign minister and CALD chairman, and DP leader Abhisit Vejjajiva, MP heading the welcoming group. The DP’s Joy Senakant hosted a lunch for the visitors. The next day, soon after they touched down in Manila, Vernetti and Bader had a meeting with Philippine Senate President and Liberal Party leader Franklin Drilon and Rep. Neric Acosta, LP executive vice president. That night also saw them in a CALD-hosted dinner in the historic walled city of Intramuros, where they were able to talk to Education Undersecretary Chito Gascon and LP director general Chit Asis. The La Margherita men had separate meetings with Dr. Ronald Meinardus of FNF, CALD’s John Coronel and Brian Gonzales, and YLDA’s Anne Elicaño as well. Six months later, CALD representatives would be in Rome, attending a European-Asian conference sponsored by La Margherita and EDP.
ROMAN WORKING DAYS WHILE ALMOST everyone in the Philippines was already in the holiday mood, December found CALD still hard at work – in Rome, where representatives of its member and observer parties attended a threeday international dialogue between Asian and European democrats. The high-level event, called “A New Europe/Asia Strategic Partnership: Challenges and Opportunities,” was sponsored by the Italian La Margherita-Freedom and Democracy Party and the European Democratic Party. Aside from Asian and European political leaders, it attracted international experts and journalists. By Day Three (3 December), participants had agreed on five general principles: strengthen political dialogue, increase cooperation and integration between Europe and Asia; establish a closer partnership and integration between European and Asian economies; promote a partnership for sustainable development and humane globalization; affirm the need for international security, for fighting against terrorism and for promoting multilateral dialogue in crisis areas (specifically Iraq, Afghanistan, Israel and Palestine, Iran, Korea, Cambodia, and Burma); promote democracy and human rights; and establish a network of Asian and European democrats. It was hoped that the commitment toward a new strategic partnership would enable Asians and Europeans to exercise shared responsibilities. They would also be able to contribute their respective sets of values and economic, political and security potential toward global governance. Representing CALD were its secretary general, Dr. Nereus Acosta, MP, and executive director, John Joseph S. Coronel and program officer Brian Gonzales. Many of the Asian participants came from CALD member and observer parties including former CALD chair Sam Rainsy of Cambodia; Senator Rodolfo Biazon of the Liberal Party of the Philippines; MPs Dr. Chareonwongsak Kriengsak and Sirichoke Sopha of
the Democrat Party of Thailand; MPs Naota Kan and Keisuke Tsumura of the Democratic Party of Japan; and MP James To Kun-sun the Hong Kong Democratic Party. Also in attendance was MP Jayanthi Natarajan of the Indian Congress Party. Among the parliamentarians from Italy were former Prime Ministers Guiliano Amato and Lamberto Dini, former Rome Mayor Francesco Rutelli (currently La Margherita President), former Defense Minister Sergio Mattarella, Gianni Vernetti and Lappo Pistelli (MEP). The European Democratic Party was represented by its co-president MP Francois Bayrou of France and Josu Jon Imaz of Spain. Present as well were Ivan Doherty, political party program director of the Washington DC-based National Democratic Institute; Policy Network (UK) Vice Director Francois Lafond; Margherita Paolini and Lucio Caracciolo of “Limes” Review of Geopolitics; Institute of International Affairs President Stefano Silvestri; Aspen Italia Director Marta Dassu; and Pio D’Emilia, vice president of the Foreign Correspondents Club of Tokyo.
COMMUNITY OF DEMOCRACIES WHEN MEMBERS of the international civil society gathered in Santiago de Chile in March for the Final Meeting for the NonGovernmental Process of the Community of Democracies, CALD – represented by Executive Director John Joseph S. Coronel – was there. Also present was Dr. Chee Soon Juan, secretary general of the Singapore Democratic Party and member of the CALD executive committee. Some 80 representatives of NGOs, political parties, political foundations, think tanks, and educational institutions from 34 countries attended the meeting, which was supposed to give civil society a chance to contribute inputs to the Third Ministerial Meeting of the Community of Democracies that was to be held in late April in the same city. The CD is a coalition of democratic countries that share the goal of strengthening democratic institutions and values at the national, regional, and global levels. Among the objectives of the March meeting were to present and discuss proposals that addressed the common democratic issues across all the six regions of the world, as well as to agree on an outreach and advocacy strategy leading up to the ministerial meeting. Five common issues ended up being tackled by the civilsociety delegates: political systems; corruption, transparency and accountability; civil society; national security; and international community and promotion of democracy. Asian delegates who either presented papers or acted as panel moderators were Debbie Stothard (Malaysia) from the Alternative Asian Network on Burma and Augusto Miclat (Philippines) from Initiatives for International Dialogue, in the session on corruption, transparency, and accountability; Raj Liberhan (India) from the CITI Foundation, in the civil society session; Michael Kau (Taiwan) from the Taiwan Foundation for Democracy, in the discussion on national security; and Enkhsaikahan Jargalsaikhan (Mongolia) from the Movement for New and Restored Democracies. 46
CONFERENCE CALLS CALD’S YOUNG program officers are always on the go, but May had them going in different directions as they attended conferences and workshops in Europe and Asia. From 1-8 May, Paolo Zamora was a delegate to the 2nd International Forum of the Youth Network for Peace Building in the Catalan cities of Manresa and Barcelona, Spain. Some 50 youth leaders from all over the world attended the event, which was sponsored by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). Zamora was invited by the Barcelonabased Federacion Catalana de Asociaciones y Clubes UNESCO. On 11 – 16 May, Andrea Yang was in Yogyakarta, Indonesia to attend a workshop called “Running Successful Political Campaigns.” The workshop aimed to enable participants not only to understand the basic rules and elements of effective political campaigns in diverse and political settings, but also to appreciate the need for strategic thinking in developing campaigns. It was hosted by the PKBYouth, the youth wing of Partai Kebangkitan Bangsa (Nation Awakening Party) and a member organization of the Young Liberals and Democrats of Asia, in cooperation with the Friedrich Naumann Foundation. The 7th Annual Bank Conference on Development Economics held at the Royal Tropical Institute of Amsterdam, the Netherlands, meanwhile, had Brian Gonzales as a delegate and rapporteur. The ABCDE, which took place 22 – 25 May, brought together academics, policy makers, and representatives from civil society and the private sector. It was organized by the World Bank that had as co-sponsors the Dutch ministries of development cooperation and finance. In March, Gonzales had also participated in the 3rd International Conference on Federalism in Brussels, Belgium. That conference, which was a joint initiative of federal and federated authorities of Belgium had then Philippine Education Secretary and former CALD chairman Florencio Abad, as one of its speakers.
Burma Cambodia Hong Kong India Indonesia Japan Korea Pakistasn Malaysia Nepal Philippines Singapore Sri Lanka Taiwan Thailand Belgium Cyprus Germany Italy Norway United Kingdom United States of America
Positions of speakers/ resource persons indicated reflect designation during the actual event.
Hon. Eng Chhay Eang, MP Secretary General Sam Rainsy Party
Dr. San Aung, MP Minister for Thailand National Coalition Government of the Union of Burma Member of Parliament Union – National Council of the Union of Burma Mr. Maung Maung Secretary General National Council of the Union of Burma Ms. Daw San San, MP Secretary Members of the Parliament Union Dr. Tint Swe, MP Minister of South Asia Affairs National Coalition Government of the Union of Burma Members of the Parliament Union Mr. David Taw Member Foreign Affairs Committee National Council of the Union of Burma Mr. Bo Hla Tint, MP Minister for Finance National Coalition Government of the Union of Burma Members of the Parliament Union
Mr. Hek Soknang Cabinet Staff and Website Supervisor Sam Rainsy Party Ms. Ly Srey Vyna, MD Sam Rainsy Party Hon. Mu Sochua Former Minister Ministry for Women’s and Veterans’ Affairs of Cambodia Sam Rainsy Party Hon. Sam Rainsy, MP Leader of the National Opposition Former CALD Chairman Hon. Tioulong Saumura, MP Sam Rainsy Party Hon. Senator Ung Bun-ang Party Spokesperson Sam Rainsy Party Ms. Sok Vilay Secretary General Khmer Nation Youth Movement of the Sam Rainsy Party Hon. Yim Sovann, MP Sam Rainsy Party
HONG KONG Hon. Sin Chung-kai, MP Democratic Party of Hong Kong
Mr. Jimmy Chun-wai Wong District Counsellor of Taipo Democratic Party of Hong Kong
Hon. Martin Lee, MP Founding Chairman Democratic Party of Hong Kong Mr. Raymond Wai-man Lee Chairman Information Technology Committee Democratic Party of Hong Kong
Mrs. Maria Pakpahan, MA, M.Sc Chairperson Nation Awakening Party Mrs. Saidah Sakwan Nation Awakening Party Mr. Widiyanto Saputro Web Developer, PKB website
INDIA Prof. Krishna Bose Trinamool Congress Party
INDONESIA Mr. Eko Darwanto Nation Awakening Party Mr. Hanif Dhakiri Deputy Secretary General Nation Awakening Party
Mrs. Eva Kusuma Sundari, MP Indonesian Democratic Party for Struggle (PDIP) Mr. Hermawi Taslim Chairman Nation Awakening Party Hon. Isma Yatun, MP Indonesian Democratic Party for Struggle
Hon. Tan Lian Hoe, MP Chairwoman, Womenâ€™s Wing Parti Gerakan Rakyat Malaysia Mr. Lai Soon Ket Head of Research, SEDAR Institute Parti Gerakan Rakyat Malaysia Dr. Chua Peng Song, MP Parti Gerakan Rakyat Malaysia Ms. Wennie Wong Siew Ying Communications Executive Secretary, Organization/Publicity Parti Gerakan Rakyat Malaysia Senator Dr. S. Vijayaratnam Vice President for International Affairs Parti Gerakan Rakyat Malaysia
Mr. HM Lukman Edy Secretary General Nation Awakening Party Hon. Hasto Kristiyanto, MP Indonesian Democratic Party for Struggle Dr. Yasonna H. Laoly, MP Indonesian Democratic Party for Struggle Hon. Anisah Mahfudz, MP Nation Awakening Party Mr. E. Swastika Noorsabri Strategic and Organization Development Department Indonesian Democratic Party for Struggle
Hon. Chinami Nishimura, MP Vice Director General for International Relations Democratic Party of Japan
Mr. Deependra Chaulagain Communications Coordinator Youth Initiative Nepal
PAKISTAN KOREA Ambassador Eui-yong Chung, MP Chairman, Internation Relations Committee Uri Party Korea Hon. Kim Myung-ja, MP Uri Party Korea
Dr. Noor Amhed Akhtar Area Coordinator Liberal Forum Pakistan Ms. Samina Imtiaz Director Liberal Forum Pakistan Mr. Asif Mehmood Khan Chairman Liberal Forum Pakistan
MALAYSIA Hon. Chia Kwang Chye, MP Deputy Minister for Internal Security Secretary General, Parti Gerakan Rakyat Malaysia 49
PHILIPPINES Hon. J.R. Nereus Acosta, MP Executive Vice President Liberal Party Hon. Florencio B. Abad Secretary (Minister), Department of Education Former CALD Chairman
Governor Grace Padaca Liberal Party Hon. Francis Pangilinan Majority Leader Philippine Senate Vice Chairman of the Liberal Party
Dr. Chee Soon Juan Secretary General Singapore Democratic Party Mr. Michael Cheng Seow Wee Singapore Democratic Party
SRI LANKA Hon. Aquilino Pimentel, Jr. Minority Leader of the Philippine Senate PDP-Laban
Ms. Swarna Amaratunga Vice President Liberal Party
Ms. Concepcion Asis Director General Liberal Party
Mr. Jonathan Malaya President Young Liberals and Democrats of Asia
Mr. George Kamal Wijetunga Nissanka Secretary General Liberal Party
Hon. Benigno Simeon Aquino III Deputy Speaker, House of Representatives Secretary General, Liberal Party
Dr. Ronald Meinardus Resident Representative Friedrich Naumann Foundation Philippines
Dr. Rajiva Wijesinha President Liberal Party
Hon. Rodolfo Biazon Senator, Republic of the Philippines Vice Chairman, Public Policy and Advocacy Commission, Liberal Party
Councilor Maria Corazon Del Mundo Secretary General, Philippine Councilors League
Hon. Henedina Abad MP Vice President for Sectors Liberal Party
Mr. John Joseph S. Coronel Executive Director Council of Asian Liberals and Democrats
Mr. Samuel Santos Media Relations Consultant, Liberal Party Director, Print Media Services, Senate of the Philippines
Hon. Franklin M. Drilon President of the Philippine Senate President, Liberal Party
Hon. Rene C. Villa Secretary (Minister) Department of Land Reform
Ms. Anne Elica単o Program Officer Young Liberals and Democrats for Asia
SINGAPORE Ms. Chee Siok Chin Executive Director Alliance for Reform and Democracy in Asia Mr. Yap Keng Ho Singapore Democratic Party
H.E. Chen Shui- bian President of Taiwan Chairman of the Council of Asian Liberals and Democrats H.E. Annette Lu Vice President of Taiwan Mr. Su Tseng Chang Chairman Democratic Progressive Party Mr. Antonio Chiang Former Deputy Secretary General, National Security Council Advisor, International Affairs Department, Democratic Progressive Party
Ms. Liu Shyh-fang Democratic Progressive Party Ms. Huai-Hui Hsieh Deputy Director of the Department of International Affairs Democratic Progressive Party
Mr. Uwe Jonannen Outgoing Regional Director for East and Southeast Asia Friedrich Naumann Foundation
Mr. Hubertus von Welck Incoming Regional Director for East and Southeast Asia Friedrich Naumann Foundation
Hon. Apirak Kosayodhin Governor of Bangkok Democrat Party of Thailand
Hon. Bi-Khim Hsiao, MP Director, International Affairs Department, Democratic Progressive Party Former Secretary General, CALD Hon. Yao Chia-Wen President of the Examination Yuan of Taiwan Hon. Yeh Yi-Jin, MP Democratic Progressive Party Mr. Lee Yi-yang Secretary-General Democratic Progressive Party Ms. Andrea Yang Program Officer, International Affairs Department Democratic Progressive Party Ms. Maysing Yang Democratic Progressive Party Former CALD Secretary General
M.R. Sukhumbhand Paribatra, MP Democrat Party of Thailand Former CALD Chairman Hon. Alongkorn Ponlaboot, MP Deputy Leader, Democrat Party of Thailand Former CALD Secretary General Ms. Sirinun Senakant Member of the Bangkok Committee Democrat Party of Thailand Dr. Boonmark Sirinaovakul Member of the Executive Committee for Technology, Democrat Party of Thailand Vice President for Technology, Rangsit University
Hon. Annemie Neyts-Uyttebroeck, MEP Minister of State Kingdom of Belgium President of the European Liberal Democratic Reform Group (ELDR Group) Former President of Liberal International
CYPRUS Hon. Androulla Vassiliou, MP Vice President European Liberal Democratic and Reform Party (ELDR) Former First Lady of Cyprus
GERMANY Dr. Buranaj Smutharaks, MP Democrat Party of Thailand Mr. Isra Sunthornwat Director of International Affairs Democrat Party of Thailand
Dr. Irmgard Schwaetzer Member of the Board of Trustees Friedrich Naumann Foundation
ITALY THAILAND Mr. James Gomez Research Manager Friedrich Naumann Foundation Mr. Rainer Heufers Project Director Friedrich Naumann Foundation â€“ Malaysia
Hon. Suthep Thuaksubhand, MP Secretary General Democrat Party of Thailand H.E. Abhisit Vejjajiva, MP Leader Democrat Party of Thailand
Hon. Gianni Vernetti, MP Head of International Relations La Margherita Party Mr. Luca Bader La Margherita Party
NORWAY Hon. Trine Skei Grande, MP Vice Chairperson, Venstre
UNITED KINGDOM Ms. Sarah Brinton Lead Trainer, Gender Balance Task Force Liberal Democrats Mr. Francois Lafond Vice Director Policy Network UK Ms. Victoria Marsom Senior Election Campaign Organiser Liberal Democrats
NORTH AMERICA UNITED STATES OF AMERICA Dr. Bruce Jacobs Academic scholar and observer to the Taiwan election Dr. Shelly Rigger Academic scholar and observer to the Taiwan election
CALD CALD CALD Members About CALD
CALD CALD MEMBER P AR TIES PAR ARTIES DEMOCRAT PARTY THAILAND 67 Setsiri Road, Samsen, Phyathai, Bangkok, 10400 Thailand Tel : (662) 270-0036 Fax : (662) 279-6086 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.democrat.or.th
DEMOCRATIC PROGRESSIVE PARTY TAIWAN 10/F No. 30, Peiping Road, Taipei, Taiwan Tel : 886-2-23929989 Fax : 886-2-23930342 E-mail: email@example.com Website: www.dpp.org.tw
LIBERAL PARTY OF THE PHILIPPINES 2nd Floor Matrinco Building, 2178 Don Chino Roces Avenue Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Tel : 632-8937483, 632-8936304 Fax : 632-8930218 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.liberalparty.ph
LIBERAL PARTY SRI LANKA 88/1 Rosmead Place, Colombo 7 Tel : 94-1-2691589 Email: email@example.com Website: www.liberalparty-srilanka.org
NATIONAL COUNCIL OF THE UNION OF BURMA PO Box 29 , Huamark Post Office Bangkok, 10243 Thailand Telefax: 662-7323360 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.ncub.org
PARTI GERAKAN RAKYAT MALAYSIA Level 5, Menara PGRM, No. 8 Jalan Pudu, Cheras, 56100, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia Tel : 60-3-92876868 Fax : 60-3-92878866 E-mail: email@example.com Website: www.gerakan.org.my 54
SAM RAINSY PARTY CAMODIA 71 Sothearos Road, Phnom Penh, Cambodia Tel : 855-23-217452 Fax : 855-23-211336 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.samrainsyparty.org
SINGAPORE DEMOCRATIC PARTY 1357-A Serangoon Road Singapore328240 Telefax: 65-3981675 E-mail: email@example.com Website: www.singaporedemocrat.org
ASSOCIA TE MEMBER ASSOCIATE LIBERAL FORUM PAKISTAN Post Box No. 1368 Islamabad / Pakistan Tel: 92-300-3013436 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.liberalforumpakistan.org
YOUNG LIBERALS AND DEMOCRATS OF ASIA (YLDA) 7-B Amorsolo Street, San Lorenzo Village Makati City 1223, Philippines Tel: (63) (2) 840-3728/29 Fax No: (63) (2) 810-3189 Email: email@example.com Website: www.yldasia.org
INDIVIDUAL MEMBER Mr. Martin Lee Founding Chairman, Democratic Party of Hong Kong 704A Admiralty Centre, Tower I, 1 8 Harcourt Road, Central Hong Kong Tel: 85-2-25290864 Fax: 85-2-28612829 E-mail: oml@firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.martinlee.org.hk 55
CALD NATURE The Council of Asian Liberals and Democrats (CALD) is not only the sole regional organization of Asian liberals and democrats but also the only umbrella organization of political parties in East, South East and South Asia.
OBJECTIVES • To foster the growth of society based on personal liberty, personal responsibility, social justice, the rule of law and free market economy;
• To provide the means of cooperation, exchange ideas, interchange of information and network-building among and between liberal parties and organizations with a liberal orientation and vision, and; • To discuss and analyze current as well as future political, social and economic concepts and developments in Asia.
PROJECT AND ACTIVITIES • Leadership trainings • Political dialogues through conferences and exchanges • Political education through seminars, workshops, visits and other appropriate channels and; • Exchange of information through publications and research
BRIEF HISTORY CALD’s formation was a response to the wave of political change experienced in the region, which necessitated a common understanding of the basic principles of liberal democracy and an Asian agenda, which include appropriate responses to problems and crises of common concern. The organization was founded in an inaugural General Assembly with H.E. Chuan Leekpai, Prime Minister of Thailand, and Dr. Kim Dae Jung of Korea on 10 to 12 December 1993 in Bangkok. Its founding members include the Democrat Party (Taiwan), the Liberal Party (Philippines), the People’s Movement Party (Malaysia), the Democratic Party (Korea) and the Buddhist Liberal Democratic Party (Cambodia). Since then, CALD has maintained close partnership with the Friedrich Naumann Foundation, Liberal International, the European Liberal Democratic Reform Party Group, the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe, and the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs. 56
H.E. President Chen Shui-bian Outgoing Chair Hon. Senate President Franklin Drilon Incoming Chair Hon. Bi-Khim Hsiao, MP Outgoing Secretary General Hon. J.R. Nereus Acosta, MP Incoming Secretary General John Joseph S. Coronel Executive Director CALD Secretariat 7-B Amorsolo Street Makati City 1223 Philippines tel (63 2) 811 3151 (63 2) 752 7557 fax (63 2) 810 1431 email: email@example.com website: www.cald.org
CALD 2004 Annual Report COORDINATOR:
John Joseph S. Coronel
Angelico O. Mercader
Brian V. Gonzales Paolo Antonio A. Zamora Matt Sherwin
This is a summary of CALD's 2005 conferences, workshops, executive visits, missions and other news and updates on liberal politics in Asia a...
Published on Jun 20, 2008
This is a summary of CALD's 2005 conferences, workshops, executive visits, missions and other news and updates on liberal politics in Asia a...