Philippines: Partido Lakas ng Masa held its 3rd Congress on January 27-28

, by PLM

PLM 3rd Congress Summary Report

The Partido Lakas ng Masa (PLM) held a successful 3rd Congress and first meeting of the newly elected National Council from January 27 to 28. The Congress was attended by 150 delegates representing around 7,000 members. A majority of the delegates were women. A strong contingent of delegates were youth and students from Young PLM (now renamed PLM-Kabataan). Several dozen guests representing the founding member organizations and fraternal organizations also attended the Congress and presented solidarity greetings.

The Congress discussed and voted on four main reports: (1) The National Political Situation; (2) Party Organization; (3) National Campaigns; and (4) Additions to the PLM Platform in conjunction with the Platform of the newly formed left political coalition, Laban ng Masa. (The slide presentation on the national political situation will be made available soon at

An urgent campaign adopted by the Congress and National Council is to oppose President Duterte’s proposal for a new federal structure (the Duterte-type of ‘federalism’) to change the relationship of forces towards the local oligarchy. Duterte has also proposed changes to the constitution (or ‘Charter Change’) in conjunction with this. A key amendment to the constitution is a provision to allow 100% foreign ownership. The Congress also adopted a proposal for a Peoples Congress, which will initially meet as people’s consultative assemblies, and the adoption of a People’s Charter as an alternative to ‘federalism’ and ‘Charter Change’.

A highlight of the Congress was the decision to have members of the organization of ex-political detainees XDI (Ex-Detainees Initiative) to join PLM. The cultural group Teatro Proletaryo and its members also joined PLM as the Party’s cultural group integrated into the propaganda work of PLM.

The Congress also decided to expand the size of the National Council to include more local grassroots leaders, women leaders and youth and student leaders. A National Council of 46 members was elected comprising of 24 women (52%) and 10 (22%) youth and students.

The Congress elected Ka Sonny Melencio as Chairperson of PLM.

Solidarity greetings from the PLM founding organizations Sanlakas and Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino were presented. Solidarity greetings from Walden Bello, Chair of Laban ng Masa, were also read out.

International solidarity greetings from the Socialist Party of Malaysia (PSM), Socialist Alliance Australia, The Left party (Die Linke) Germany and the Left Party (Vansterpartiet) of Sweden were also read out at the Congress.