Thursday, March 13, 2008


An Open Letter to the Senate of the Philippines

Protect the Philippine Patrimony in Japan, Save the Philippine Properties from Arroyo's Greed and Corruption: Petition and Unity Statement of Concerned Filipinos in Japan

Honorable Manuel Villar

President, Senate of the Philippines

Rm. 606 6th Flr., GSIS Bldg.,

Financial Center, Roxas Blvd.,

Pasay City

Dear Sir:

We, the members of the Filipino community and our Japanese supporters, are outraged by Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s renewed bidding call for the “development” of the Fujimi property, which is one of the five (5) properties acquired by the Philippines in Japan through World War II reparations of Japan to the Philippines. The others are located in other posh districts in Tokyo and Kobe.

The Fujimi is a 5,219 square-meter prime real-state located in a mixed residential and commercial district in Tokyo right next to the Imperial Palace and the famous Yasukuni Shrine, where coincidentally those who sacrificed their lives for their country in WWII are enshrined.

We understand that the move to subject the said Philippine property and patrimony in Japan for built-operate-transfer schemes come after the revelation by Engineer Rodolfo Noel Lozada, Jr. at the Philippine Senate Blue Ribbon hearing last 8 February 2008 on the overpriced Zhong Xing Telecommunication Equipment Company-National Broadband Network (ZTE-NBN) project, for which we understand that former Commission on Election Chairman Benjamin Abalos, Sr., allegedly hoped to gain a large amount of kickbacks amounting to 130 million US dollars in connivance with Jose Miguel Arroyo, the husband of Gloria M. Arroyo, who should be held responsible for all these scams.

We, therefore, view both the biddings for ZTE-NBN and the Fujimi property projects as having no clear public rationale, and like the former, the bidding for the Fujimi property has to be stopped.

In August 2003, the Arroyo administration discretely published an ad in the newspapers soliciting bids for the development of the remaining Philippine properties in Japan. This "stealth attack" was almost successful as it was not until October that the Filipino community got word of the new attempt.

The bidding schedule was particularly disturbing since it was timed so that awards could be made on the day prior to the moratorium on property dealings, six months before the elections - a blatant attempt that the Filipino community in Japan saw as a desperate effort to quickly raise funds for Arroyos election campaign. Towards the end of November, we were informed that you, Senator Manuel Villar, issued a statement that the Senate should be informed that the bidding was stopped and not pushed through.

However, in February 2004, to the great surprise of the Filipino community in Tokyo, articles suddenly appeared in the Philippine newspapers that the Arroyo government was already prepared to award 50-year leases for the Shibuya and two Kobe properties, in exchange for 948 million pesos (1.78 billion yen) under a "hybrid build-operate-transfer" scheme.

The Kudanshita, Fujimi property was excluded from the award that we surmise, in part, to pacify the ambassador who lives there, and who has been against the disposal of the properties.

The awards were to be given to two companies: Urban Corporation, a relatively young property developer based in Hiroshima; and a certain Berg Corporation, which is not listed anywhere in Japan. Thus, the granting such award to a non-Japanese or Filipino company has by virtue of the provisions of the Japan-Philippine Reparations Treaty a breach of the treaty and a violation of the terms and conditions of the said treaty that has restricted the granting of such award to any non-Filipino or non-Japanese individual, company and otherwise.

Moreover, there had been no announcement as required by the law regarding such information as to the names of the other bidders, prices submitted, and the details of the schemes to be undertaken. Even now, such information has not been disclosed to the public that the Filipino community in Japan cannot understand other than an aversion to transparency. Even senior level embassy officers in Tokyo have not informed of the details throughout the bidding process then and now.

Once again, in February 25, 2008, at the height of the nation-wide mass actions calling for Arroyo’s resignation due to corruption charges and the People Power anniversary, the news reported the call for the Fujimi property bidding. This time, the Philippine Ambassador, Domingo L. Siazon is even implicated in what the Filipino community deem to be another scam despite the fact that he has openly spoken against the disposal of the Fujimi property.

The news stated the Philippine ambassador might be “bent on favoring a close relative or friends of his wife’s clan in Japan.” This statement made by an official of the Department of Finance is posted at

Accordingly, we, the Filipinos in Japan and our Japanese supporters, oppose all forms of trampling on our own patrimonial rights. If the removal of Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo is necessarily for these patrimonies to remain in Philippine hands, so be it. Sobra na, tama na, kumilos na (Enough is enough, stop the immoral undertaking, let’s act now)!

We, therefore, are affixing our signatures to show our unity on the issue and solidarity with the millions of Filipinos calling for the preservation of the historical Fujimi property, and other Philippine patrimonies in Japan, especially the property at Nampeidai, Shibuya Ward in Tokyo that is now being contested in a Philippine court by a Japanese who claims he bought the said property from the Arroyo government sans a national referendum and therefore has the right to register the said property and dispose of it as his own. For this, we demand very strongly the resignation or ousting of Arroyo.

We are counting on the Senate President to help and act on the petition of the Filipino people to stop the bidding and all transactions of the Arroyo administration to dispose the Philippine properties in Japan.

Protect the Philippine Patrimony in Japan!

Save the Philippine Fujimi Property Away from Greed and Corruption!

Oust Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo NOW!

Cc: Members of the Philippine Senate

Philippine Embassy, Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan

March 30, 2008

Yuko Takei


Crusade for the Protection of Philippine Patrimonies in Japan

Agalyn Nagase

National Chairperson

Kalipunan ng mga Filipino na Nagkakaisa (KAFIN)

Cesar V. Santoyo

Mission Director

Center for Japanese-Filipino Families (CJFF)

Cora Kasuga

National Chairperson

Filipina Circle for Advancement and Progress (FICAP)

Roland Tolentino

Professor, University of the Philippines Film Institute

Visiting Researcher, Center for Southeast Asian Studies,

Kyoto University

Jocelyn Hasumi

Leader, Saitama Chapter

The Philippine Women’s League of Japan

Virgie Ishihara

Executive Director

Filipino Migrants Center (FMC)

Epifania M. Kyo

Association of Filipino Wives of Japanese

Chiba, Japan

Margie Ieda


Filipina Circle for Advancement and Progress (FICAP-Nagoya)

Francis YU


Tokyo, Japan


lahingbughaw said...

Here's an additional news on the bidding for the Kudanshita property:

From The Star:

Government attracts 22 bidders for Japan property worth P3B
By Iris Gonzales
Friday, March 14, 2008

The government has attracted as much as 22 prospective bidders for its
property in Fujimi Cho, Chiyoda Ku, Japan worth at least P3 billion, a
Finance official yesterday said.

However, due to the tedious process required in preparing the bids,
the government extended the deadline for the submission of documents
to March 25, 2008 from the original deadline of March 4, 2008.

The opening of the financial bids which is expected to be followed
immediately by the announcement of winners, has been set on April 4,
2008, said Henry Angeles of the DOF's legal services group.

Angeles said that the government decided to extend the deadline due to
the voluminous requirements for bidders.

Earlier, the Philippine government has successfully awarded lease and
development contracts for its 764-sqm property in Naniwa Cho and the
3,014-square meter property in Obanoyama Cho both situated in Kobe,
Japan to Berg Co. Ltd. of Japan.

The sale of the Fujimi property is part of government efforts to raise
revenues and boost state coffers.

The DOF has set a target of P30 billion from privatization for 2008 or
one third of the P90.6 billion generated last year. Aside from Fujimi,
the P30 billion includes expected revenues from the sale of the
government's stake in power distributor Manila Electric Co., and the
100-hectare Food Terminals Inc. (FTI) in Taguig.

The government has been stepping up efforts to boost state coffers but
the privatization of state-owned assets has become the major source of
revenues amid shortfalls in tax collections.

Fiscal authorities are stepping up efforts to improve collections.
Last year, the government posted a budget deficit of P9.4 billion or
way below the programmed ceiling of P63 billion.

It hopes to balance the budget this year.

ana said...

Ang ganda ng panawagan mo dito lalo na doon sa ibaba ng blog mo. Let us all unite and give them what they deserve. - Philippines