As we commemorate the International Human Rights Day, we are sharing with you our research, “Analyzing Flood Events in Marikina, Rizal and Cagayan Valley related to Typhoon Ulysses”, to take a closer look at the floods that happened in Marikina, Rizal and Cagayan Valley during Typhoon Ulysses and assesses key factors and players accountable for turning the flooding hazards into disasters.
Disasters and human rights are closely tied together. Disasters are preventable phenomena that deprive millions of their rights to decent and healthy dwellings and sufficient livelihoods. It is also the deprivation of millions of Filipinos of adequate standards of living that render them vulnerable to the onslaught of natural hazards.
The flooding disasters of Marikina, Rizal and Cagayan Valley has heartbreakingly shown us how the urban and rural poor bear the brunt of disasters. It has also revealed to us how entrenched systems of economic inequality, the self-aggrandizement of the country’s politicians and ruling elites, and an inept bureaucracy trap us in this lethal cycle of disaster after disaster.
This year alone there was the Taal disaster, the continuing disaster that is our failure of a pandemic response, and the typhoon disasters.
It is becoming apparent that Duterte’s incompetent, untrustworthy, and trigger-happy regime is the greatest disaster we Filipinos are currently facing.
To commemorate this day, we exercise our rights to speech and self-organization to defend our democratic spaces and freedoms. We defy the vicious vilification that wants to forcefully silences us. We will go out to the streets in peaceful and physically distanced assembly to demand accountability, insist redress, and work towards the needed radical social shifts that will free us from this recurring cycle of man-made disasters.
Image credit: Ted Aljibe, AFP