MANILA, Sept. 20, 2011?A militant priest called on the government to put in place a sound economic policy that gives priority in strengthening domestic economy.

Fr. Jose Dizon, lead convenor of Solidarity Philippines said a strong domestic industry is what the country needs to plug exodus of Filipino workers seeking jobs abroad.

The priest cited the continuous migration of Filipinos to work overseas as a factor to the disintegration of morals among young people and the breakdown of families.

“Our young people are growing up without parental guidance. That’s why moral values are going down. In the last two decades, our young people have grown up without a solid family, without their parents [around them],” he said.

Dizon pointed out that it is a wrong policy on the part of government to use migrant workers as a means to prop the country’s economy.

The billions of pesos of remittances sent into the country annually by OFWs keep the economy stay afloat.

In 2010 alone, according to the Central Bank of the Philippines, around P18.7 billion in remittances were poured into the treasury.

Dizon cited genuine land reform and a nationalist industrialization that have long term economic effects as the key to a strong domestic economy.

He expressed hopes that the Aquino government will resolve the issue of Hacienda Luisita in favor of the farmers.

“The Aquino family should realize that the people have already done so much for them –the people kicked out Marcos, they elected Cory president, now Pnoy. Now is the time to return the favor—distribute Hacienda Luisita to the farmers,” Dizon said.

“Sa totoo naman, nang kinamkam ng mga ninuno nila, pera ng bayan ang ginamit at sa kundisyon na ibabalik iyan sa mga magsasaka. That’s why, if Pnoy will give back Hacienda Luisita to the farmers, he will just be correcting a historical error,” he added.

The activist priest also noted that the recent convention of church people and workers strongly boosted the workers’ struggle against injustices they experience in the workplace.

He said the government should not evade the issues, but rather should listen to the workers’ call for just wages, put a halt on contractualization and encourage them to organize unions. (CBCPNews)