Filipino Liberals Dialogue with Counterparts
As the party in power affirming its role in governance, a seven-member
delegation of the Liberal
Party of the Philippines (LP) is in now Europe to meet with
their counterparts in the European Parliament in Strasbourg and
with leaders of Germany’s ruling coalition party, Free
Democratic Party (FDP).
Representatives Maricar Apsay (First District
of Compostella Valley), Bolet Banal (Third District
of Quezon City), Vicente Belmonte Jr. (Lone District
of Iligan City), Leo Ocampos (Second District
of Misamis Occidental), and Mel Sarmiento (First
District of Western Samar), and LP Director General Gladys
Sta. Rita and LP Cebu Provincial Chapter Chairman
Hilario Davide III are visiting the Council of Europe
and the European Parliament in Strasbourg, France
as well as the Foreign Office and the Bundestag in Berlin,
Germany on July 3-9, 2011.
The trip was organized the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Liberty
(FNF) as part of its annual Information Program. Meetings with
the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats
(ALDE) and FDP have been arranged to provide an exchange of ideas
and share best practices on party organization
that includes communication and campaign strategies.
Discussions on transitioning from opposition to governing party
will also take place. Equally important are dialogues on the European
Union and Asia relations, and Germany’s foreign policy in
the Philippines and possible bilateral development cooperation.
“The lessons to be learned are very important to me as the
new director-general of the Liberal Party as we work towards the
strengthening of LP,” expressed Sta. Rita.
The Philippine delegation is meeting fellow liberals like ALDE
leaders Sir Graham Watson, Guy Verhofstadt, and Alexander Graf
Lambsdorff , Liberal International President Hans van Baalen,
and Director General of the German Ministry for Economic Cooperation
and Development Harald Klein.
“When we come back in the Philippines, we will apply the
liberals all the principles and philosophies so that we can improve
our community and our country,” assured Ocampos. “The
Liberal Party of the Philippines can certainly benefit from the
Information Program. Becoming a strong and influential party in
government is not difficult to achieve given the number of committed
members that LP has and their dedication to push for liberal
reforms in support of their party chair, President Aquino,”
said Jules Maaten, FNF Philippines Country Director.