CALD News You Can Use Week of 29 January – 5 February 2014

February 5, 2014 9:25 am Published by Leave your thoughts

CALD News You Can Use

Week of 29 January – 5 February 2014


 Toward one goal in unison

04 February 2014


“Only by binding together as a single force will we remain strong and unconquerable.”

― Chris Bradford, The Way of the Dragon

 After a series of successful and fruitful projects and events this past 2013, from the historical and monumental 20th Anniversary Celebration of the Council of Asian Liberals and Democrats, and the ever fun, heart-pumping and sweat-inducing Freedom Run, and as well as the wonderful Freedom Speech 2013 of the Friedrich Naumann Foundation Philippine Office, the formidable force that is FNF-CALD, took a break from office work to set goals, plot plans, and refresh and recharge the team towards a new and dynamic energy for 2014 and beyond.

FNF-CALD held its 2-part team development workshop last 27 January 2014 in the Makati Office for a series of lectures with Ms. Lulu Moguel and Ms. Yoly Ong on marketing and communications for programs on governance and political participation, and last 3-4 February 2014 in Thunderbird Resorts in Angono, Rizal for teambuilding and plan-setting activities facilitated by Ms. Christina Otero.

 CALD Secretariat conducts Post-Typhoon Haiyan Mission Trip

31 January 2014


Waves calm, silent skies, stare out to the distance and see what lies.

Look around, lo and behold, a story is brewing awaiting to be told…

 After more than 2 months since the exceptionally powerful 300km/hour Philippine typhoon record-holder, Typhoon Haiyan, stormed its way into the Philippines, the Council of Asian Liberals and Democrats, lead by CALD Secretary General Neric Acosta, together with the members of the Office of the Presidential Adviser for Environmental Protection (OPAEP), the Laguna Lake Development Authority (LLDA), the Philippine Climate Change Commission, the Philippine Medical Association, the Philippine Disaster Recovery Foundation, Feed the Hungry Minds, Environmental Science for Social Change, and PTT Philippine Corporation, left Manila in a C130 last Thursday morning, 30 January 2014, for a mission trip to Leyte Province.

Full with truck-loads of boxes of donations from international and local partners and donors, the 30-member delegation arrived noontime in Tacloban and immediately traveled across the province of Leyte to: (1) conduct site visits; (2) area assessments for education and livelihood programs; (3) dialogue with residents; and (4) meetings and consultations with local officials. The team visited the towns of Tabon-Tabon, Julita, La Paz and Mayorga and was welcomed by the respective Municipality Mayors.

Video: CALD Women’s Caucus


 Suu Kyi Says Report Shows Support for Burma Charter Reform

04 February 2014

Burmese opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi has said that a report last week from a parliamentary committee showed there was strong public support for changing the country’s military-drafted 2008 Constitution.

Friday’s report from Naypyidaw’s Joint Constitutional Review Committee (JCRC) set out comments about amending the Constitution—from the public, experts, NGOs, political parties and government departments—but has sowed confusion.

The report showed most of the more than 28,000 responses to a consultation had supported amending the Constitution. But footnotes in the report cited a single petition—signed by more than 100,000 people—rejecting constitutional change.

 Hugo Swire calls on Tatmadaw to embrace reform

03 February 2014

UK Foreign Office Minister Hugo Swire has reiterated support for constitutional amendment, highlighted ongoing concerns about Rakhine State, and explained the case for increased military engagement with Myanmar during his recent visit.

Speaking to the media in Yangon at the end of his recent three-day visit to Myanmar, Minister Swire outlined a number of constitutional amendments his government feels need to be addressed. He expressed particular concern over the need for redress on section 59(f) which currently bars Daw Aung San Suu Kyi from assuming the presidency.

While he called some amendments – including independence of the judiciary and removal of the military’s veto power – “complex” and requiring “careful consideration”, he said an amendment to 59(f) would be “very simple” and “very important”.


 UN Rights Officials Want Serious Rights Reforms, Opposition Says

31 January 2014

WASHINGTON DC — Opposition leader Sam Rainsy says the international community is now pushing hard for serious human rights reforms in Cambodia.

Sam Rainsy, head of the Cambodia National Rescue Party, was this week in Geneva, where a UN human rights review of Cambodia took place.

The UN’s Human Rights Committee is asking for “judicial reform, elimination of corruption, respect of people’s rights to freedom of expression, and freedom of assembly,” he said. “But now [Cambodia] has not only failed to fulfill its promises, it is worse than before.”


 Democratic Party ignores call to boycott reception

04 February 2014

The Democratic Party will send representatives to the central government liaison office’s spring reception, despite a call by some pan-democrats for a mass boycott by the camp.

Lawmakers Albert Ho Chun-yan and Sin Chung-kai said party representatives would be at the annual reception on February 13. The length of the invitation list is unprecedented, and includes radical pan-democrats.


Golkar mulls long-term 
alliance with PDI-P

04 February 2014

The prospect of the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P) winning the 2014 legislative election has prompted rival political parties to hatch plans to build a coalition with the party.

The Golkar Party — which according to a number of public opinion polls, stands a good chance of coming in second place in the 2014 legislative election — has openly expressed its interest in joining forces with the opposition party.

On Monday, respected Golkar politician Hajriyanto Thohari said that the party was considering building a long-term coalition with the PDI-P.

Hajriyanto said that his party had given thought to forming a “strong and permanent” coalition with the PDI-P for “at least five [general] elections”.

“I think 2014 is the perfect momentum to realize this desire,” he told reporters.

 Jokowi outshines Prabowo

03 February 2014

A new survey has found that Jakarta Governor Joko “Jokowi” Widodo is twice as popular as Great Indonesia Movement (Gerindra) Party chief patron Lt. Gen. (ret) Prabowo Subianto.

A public opinion survey by the Indonesian Survey Circle (LSI) has found that if a presidential election were to take place today, Jokowi would receive between 22.3 and 35.6 percent of the vote, against Prabowo who would garner between 12.6 and 19.7 percent.

 More would go to polls 
if Jokowi ran: Survey

30 January 2014

A survey has revealed that the country will see a higher voter turnout for this year’s presidential election if Jakarta Governor Joko “Jokowi” Widodo were to join the race.

The survey, released on Wednesday by Saiful Mujani Research and Consulting (SMRC), showed a spike in the percentage of respondents who would vote if Jokowi was listed as a presidential candidate.

The survey, which was conducted from Dec. 19 to Dec. 27, 2013 involving 1,220 respondents and with a 2.9 percent margin of error, revealed that only 15 percent of respondents said they would vote for leaders of top political parties running for president.

PDI-P finally unveils Jokowi, 
Megawati as strong potential 

29 January 2014

The third largest political party, the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P), has finally broke its long silence by mentioning the names of Joko “Jokowi” Widodo and chairwoman Megawati Soekarnoputri as two strong potential presidential candidates.

“The ultimate test will be the legislative election, which will be held on April 9. The PDI-P will be able to propose Jokowi and Megawati as presidential candidates if it can secure at least 20 percent of the vote,” secretary-general Tjahjo Kumolo said as quoted by on Wednesday.


Philippine Leader Sounds Alarm on China

04 February 2014

President Benigno S. Aquino III called on Tuesday for nations around the world to do more to support the Philippines in resisting China’s assertive claims to the seas near his country, drawing a comparison to the West’s failure to support Czechoslovakia against Hitler’s demands for Czech land in 1938.

‘The right leader at the right time’

04 February 2014

It seems like the Philippines will be sauntering forward (at the very least) and galloping (hopefully) in this Year of the Horse.

According to published reports, the Philippine economy grew 7.2 percent, the second fastest in Asia. The Philippines recorded the second biggest economic expansion in Asia with a growth of 6.5 percent in the fourth quarter of 2013, bringing the year’s GDP to 7.2 percent, next to China’s 7.7  percent.

In a recent issue of Bloomberg Markets, which had a special report “Outlook 2014: Where to Invest,” the Philippines merited some good points, too!


Thailand: Democrat Party to seek court annulment of Sunday polls

03 February 2014

Thailand’s Democrat Party is collecting evidence to seek a Constitution Court ruling to invalidate snap election held on Sunday, said party deputy leader Ong-art Klampaiboon.

He said the party will lodge a petition to the court soon through various channels.

Democrat Party: ‘The government hasn’t respected the law’

03 February 2014

Democrat Party leader, and former prime minister of Thailand, Abhisit Vejjajiva, has told the BBC that the government “clearly has not respected the law”.

Thailand’s Democratic Way Out

31 January 2014

The Thai people will go to the ballot box on Sunday, but there is little chance that the voting will break the political deadlock that is crippling the country.


Liberals confirm Guy Verhofstadt as nominee for European Commission President

01 February 2014

Former Belgian Prime Minister Guy Verhofstadt has been confirmed as the European Liberal Party’s candidate for President of the European Commission, ahead of the European elections in May.

Delegates of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe (ALDE) approved the resolution by a majority of 80 percent at a meeting in Brussels on Saturday.

Verhofstadt, who currently heads the party group in the European Parliament, is a committed federalist. His campaign will call for deeper political integration within the European Union.

Rotterdam Congress: resolution deadlines and media engagement

09 January 2014

Liberal International’s 59th Congress, to be held in Rotterdam, The Netherlands, at the invitation of LI full member VVD, is only a short time away and many resolution deadlines are fast approaching.

The Congress, which will take place between 24-27th April 2014, will see LI return to Europe for the first time in 6 years and is expected to draw a large delegation of liberal parliamentarians from around the world. Under the theme, ‘Enhancing Global Trade’, draft resolutions and contributions for the World Today resolution are invited for submission from any LI member party not later than 12 February 2014.

Resolutions are used by LI member parties as policy guiding documents and to garner international support for a policy or campaign in their home country. Please contact LI membership and policy officer – Robert Wintraecken – if you require further information regarding resolutions. Follow this link to find a complete list of resolution deadlines.

Ahead of the Congress, LI will also be working with our member parties to enhance media outreach. The Rotterdam Congress will be an outstanding opportunity to showcase our member parties’ leaders, campaigns, messages and policies to the media. Communications Officer, William Townsend, is putting together the press list and requires your assistance to develop it. Please contact William – – to discuss how we can incorporate news outlets from your country into the Congress. You can find an overview of recent LI press coverage on our website, here.

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This post was written by CALD

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The Council of Asian Liberals and Democrats (CALD) was inaugurated in Bangkok in 1993, with the support of then Thai Prime Minister Chuan Leekpai and South Korea’s Kim Dae-Jung. CALD, which offers a unique platform for dialogue and cooperation, is the only regional alliance of liberal and democratic political parties in Asia.
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