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Wednesday, September 17, 2008

ATING-KOOP Primer

  • What is ATING-KOOP?

ATING-KOOP is a national sectoral organization whose core ideology is the advocacy and promotion of the interests of the cooperative movement.

  • How is ATING-KOOP similar to other cooperatives?

Like other cooperatives, ATING-KOOP shall advance the interests and welfare of the members of the cooperative movement and fight for other issues that concern the cooperative sector.

  • How is this sectoral organization different from existing primaries or leagues of cooperatives?

ATING-KOOP is a political organization that aims to participate in political exercises, especially in national elections. In a sense, ATING-KOOP is similar to other political parties that participate in politics. But unlike ordinary political parties, ATING-KOOP represents the interests of the national cooperative movement.

  • Why is there a need for the cooperative movement to participate in elections?

There is an urgent need for the voice of the cooperative movement to be

heard in Congress so that we can participate in the enactment of laws and formulation of policies that directly impact on our sector. For example, we must be active in opposing proposed imposition of taxes on cooperatives. We must also participate in the budgetary allocations and work for funding and other material support from the government for the benefit of the cooperatives.

  • What are the platforms and issues that ATING-KOOP is fighting for?

As contained in its Constitution and By-Laws, ATING-KOOP aims to:

a. Establish a mass-based at principled political party that shall fight for pro-people and pro-cooperative issues and programs.

b. Work for the enactment of laws that shall benefit the cooperatives and oppose all policies that adversely affect the sector.

c. Call the attention of government on the need to pay more attention to and allocate funds for the education and dissemination of information to enhance the consciousness of the people on cooperatives.

d. Strive to allocate funds for infrastructure projects that meet the needs of the cooperatives, especially the underprivileged sectors of society.

e. Participate in the struggle of the people to reform the country’s electoral and political systems.

  • How does ATING-KOOP intend to participate in the national elections?

The party shall participate in the elections through the party-list system enshrined in the Constitution and mandated by Republic Act No. 7941. ATING-KOOP shall participate under the said party-list system during the 2010 elections.

  • What is the party-list system of elections?

Under the party-list system, 20% of the seats in Congress are reserved for representatives from sectoral organizations at parties representing different sectors. These representatives are in addition to congressmen elected by districts.

  • Does it mean that under the system, the voters are electing parties and not individual candidates?

Yes. On the ballot are listed the names of all accredited party-list organizations from which the voter shall choose one party or sectoral organization. If the party or organization garners the sufficient number of votes, its nominees/nominee shall be seated in Congress.

  • How many votes does a party/organization need to win seats in Congress?

Under the system, if a sectoral organization gets at least 2% of the votes cast for all participating party lists and sectoral organizations, it shall be entitled to one seat in Congress. If it gets 4%, it gets two seats and three seats if it gets 6% of the votes for the party-list. A party is entitled to no more than three (3) seats.

  • Ordinarily, how many votes are required to get 2% of the votes for party list?

In the past elections, on the average, 300,000 votes are enough to get a seat in Congress. This means that if a party garners close to one million votes, it automatically gets three (3) seats in Congress.

  • Don’t we already have other political parties and sectoral organizations representing cooperatives in Congress?

Yes. But the number and quality of representatives in Congress are not enough to advocate and realize the legislative agenda of the cooperative movement. Also, compared to the size of members of cooperatives nationwide, our representation in Congress is too small and disproportionate.

  • Who will choose the party’s representatives in Congress?

Under its rules and standards, the party’s representatives shall be chosen from a list of five (5) nominees chosen by the party months before the elections. They are listed according to priority. The first in the list shall be seated first and then second and then the third in the list.

  • How are party list representatives different from congressmen elected by districts in terms of status and benefits?

Party-list representatives are considered elected Members of the House of Representatives and as such, entitled to the same deliberative rights, salaries and emoluments as the regular Members of the House of Representatives. They shall serve for a term of three (3) years with a maximum of three (3) consecutive terms. If the party list is not able to win seats in Congress for two (2) consecutive elections, it shall be demolished.

  • What are the criteria of ATING-KOOP in choosing its nominees?

First, its nominees must be loyal to the organization and are ready to pay the ultimate price in defense of ATING-KOOP’s principles and advocacies. Second, he/she must actively participate in the formulation of policies and approval of laws in Congress, especially those that concern the cooperative movement. Lastly, the nominee must preserve his integrity and good reputation and continuously safeguard the honor of the organization.

  • Can it still withdraw names of nominees who are already seated in Congress?

Yes, under certain conditions, it can still withdraw the names of the nominees are already seated in Congress. Aside from those already provided under RA 7942, the party shall formulate the bases and grounds for withdrawal of nominations. Generally, disloyalty and turncoatism are some of the principal grounds for withdrawal of nominations or representatives from Congress.

  • What are the requirements for the party’s participation in the elections?

First, it must be registered with the Comelec. Second, it must manifest in writing its desire to participate under the party list system.

  • Is ATING-KOOP a regional or a national organization?

ATING-KOOP is national sectoral organization.

  • How can one be a member of ATING-KOOP?

To be a member of the party, an applicant must submit an application form, pledge to abide by the party’s Constitution and By-Laws, pay his/her membership fees and prove his membership by possessing ATING-KOOP’s ID.

  • Where can one apply for party membership?

An applicant may apply for membership with the barangay, municipal, city, provincial or regional chapters and other chapters organized by the party at various levels and sectors.

  • How can we support ATING-KOOP?

The success of ATING-KOOP relies on our unity and concrete support of the membership. Its honest, wise and self-sacrificing leaders shall also play a crucial role in leading the organization to victory.

To succeed, we need to:

a. Massively recruit members and make sure that every corner of the archipelago is made aware of ATING-KOOP’s issues and programs;

b. Creatively campaign and persuade voters inside and outside the cooperative sector to vote for ATING-KOOP.

c. Strengthen the chapters to make sure that everybody has a role to play in campaigning for the party.

d. Muster sufficient funds, material and other forms of support to sustain the organization and its programs.

1 comment:

List of Philippine Organizations said...

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