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Sweap cuts ties with courage

LABOR union Social Welfare Employees Association of the Philippines (SWEAP-NATIONAL) has withdrawn its affiliation with the Confederation for Unity, Recognition and Advancement of Government Employees (COURAGE).

Under SWEAP-National Council Resolution No. 001 series of 2021 released by SWEAP National, it said that 13 of its 17 council members/chapter presidents voted for the discontinuance of the affiliation, three others voted for its continuity while one abstained.

National Intelligence Coordinating Agency (NICA) Director-General Alex Paul Monteagudo, in a Senate hearing on red-tagging last November 3 2020, identified COURAGE along with Alliance of Concerned Teachers (ACT) and Alliance of Health Workers (AHW) as communist terror group (CTG) front organizations.

In a video shown by Monteagudo during the Senate hearing that featured Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) founder Jose Maria “Joma” Sison, Sison mentioned that Bayan is CPP-NPA-NDF’s biggest umbrella organization.

Monteagudo pointed out that COURAGE, ACT and AHW form part of Bayan.

In the Senate hearing as well, Monteagudo presented that COURAGE claims to have a total of 200 unions, associations, and federations and regional formations affiliated. Mass base of around 300,00 workers from the national government agencies, local government units, state colleges and universities and government-owned and controlled corporations.

It may be due to this as well as the questionable activities of COURAGE that SWEAP National decided to debate and vote upon its affiliation through the members of the National Council (NC) after its Fourth Quarter National Council meeting last December 16, 2020.

In the two-page resolution, SWEAP National said its affiliation with COURAGE was put in question in recent years due to the collection of fees and its utilization as well as the activities being engaged on up to the service provided to affiliate members.

SWEAP National stated in the resolution that the issues led to the “clamor” among the members of the association including members of the National Council which then led to the discussion and evaluation of the affiliation.

A forum was then conducted with COURAGE (SWEAP Kaalaman) last January 8, 2021 and a learning debate (special National Council meeting) last January 24 to ensure a fair, balanced, and fact-based decision.

With this, SWEAP being the national employees’ association of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) shall rescind, revoke, or otherwise repeal SWEAP National Council Resolution No. 00-007, series of 200 and shall no longer remit monthly dues to COURAGE. The resolution withdrawing SWEAP National’s affiliation with COURAGE was signed by the National Council last January 21, 2021.

Its members include SWEAP national president/NCR chapter Alan Balaba; SWEAP chapter president Fo I Glynnis Casuga; SWEAP chapter president FO II Dulceneah Lyra Dela Cruz; SWEAP chapter president FO III Thea Maria Rica Del Rosariol; SWEAP chapter president FO IV-A Joseph Constantine Arceo; SWEAP chapter president FO IV-B Josephine Macalagay; SWEAP chapter president FO V Juvy Pasano; SWEAP chapter president FO VI Clarence Darryl Alfuente; SWEAP chapter president FO VII Brigieda Goron; SWEAP chapter president FO VIII Federico Pagayanan; and SWEAP chapter president FO IX Fe Dela Cruz.

SWEAP National and all its chapters has been affiliated with COURAGE since the year 2000 through SWEAP National Council Resolution No. 00-007