By: Adela Garapan Ida
The Lola better known as Lila Pilipina an organization of World War 11 Comfort Women victims of sexual abuse by the Japanese Military Regime in our country.
There are 174 numbers of Comfort Women when Lila Pilipina was organized. Seventy (70) among them have died already, while the remaining One Hundred Four (104) members alive including the families and relatives are still fighting and struggling for justice from the Japanese Government.
These women are optimistic that their grievances and sentiments towards reluctancy from both side of two government ( Philippine and Japan)to solve the issue should be taken into consideration. That these two countries would set together to deal and come up necessary measures to alleviate the plight of the victims . What they are fighting for; for several decades now are two issues, and these are:
- International and National Apology
- Compensation from the Japanese Government for being one of the victims of sexual slavery by the Japanese Military during the World War 11.
According to Lila Pilipina, they have exerted possible efforts but sad to say the issue remain unsolved until now. They made an appeal whoever is the President in our country but they have done nothing that even Pres. Aquino is also mum on this. They President had been quoted that regarding the issue of Apology and Compensation for that matter has been closed already.
The Lila Pilipina reiterated that as far as they are concerned even if they are getting older their minds are still intact as well as their memory are still very clear. Its only the President who is suffering of amentia instead.
In this regard Mrs. Extramdura sometime in November 2010 on a non-political and issue focused Pandesal Forum sponsored by Kamuning Bakery Café in Q. C., Pres. Aquino had tasked the newly appointed Ambassador Emmanuel l. Lopez to study on this matter and make a compromise as regards to Apology issue. As for Compensation issue he will task the Congress to draft a law that will ensure the remaining Lolas would received compensation. The funds to be provided by the 1956 Reparations Agreement which will be considered all en compassing – that include comfort women. However, the Lolas expressed their sentiments that the Congress did not done anything nor draft a law except a resolution filed by Makabayan Bloc.
On January 27, 2016, the Emperor of Japan, Emperor Akihito would come for a visit to our country. The GABRIELA would also be present during the courtesy call at the Malacañang.
However Ms. Extramdura have some doubts if Pres. Aquino would bring this issue of Apology and Compensation to the Emperor’s attention during his visit considering that Japan has the biggest ODA and largest investment in the country. One more thing, the President might as well be silent on this issue because of the Visiting Forces Agreement between the Philippines and Japan which is being undertaken and in the process.
During the Emperors visit on January 27, 2016 the GABRIELA would set a protest to press their demands on Apology and Compensation. And to coincide with the protest regarding military alliance between US and Japan as described as ” Continuing Puppetry of the Aquino Government at expense of sovereignty”.
Finally, the Lila Pilipina expressed with high hopes that Pres. Aquino would bring up this matter despite the prevailing obstacles for their plea for justice that they have been continuously fighting for several decades. That the INTERNATIONAL AND NATIONAL APOLOGY AND COMPENSATION FROM THE JAPAN GOVERNMENT should be granted in their favor.
The Kamuning Bakery Café in Q. C. is the first bakery in Q.C. founded and owned by Atty. Letecia Bonifacio Javier and her husband Lieutenant Marcelo Javier who had fought and died the Japanese Military invaders during the 1945 Battle of Manila.
Mr. Wilson Lee Flores, a writer and Realty Entrepreneur revived the Kamuning Bakery Café in December 2013. That according to him the reason why he Sponsor the Comfort Women Victims Pandesal Forum which was launched on September 15 2015 where he is the convener and moderator at the same time. This occasion is in commemoration of the death anniversary of his relatives whose lives were also victims of Japanese military oppression during the 1945 Battle in Manila.
Present during the Pandesal Forum Comfort for Women plea for justice who extended their full support were the following; GABRIELA Women’s Party
Congresswoman Emmi de Jesus, Dr. Ricardo de Jesus, a UP Professor for History and Third World Countries Director for Study Center, Dr. Vim Nadera, Post and Education.
Finally, the Lila Pilipina member brought some souvenir items which they have made by their own, an ORIGAMI CRANE, symbolizing Peace and to remind the Pres. Aquino the opportunities they miss to pursue justice for lolas.#