1-Ako Babaeng Astig Aasenso (1-ABAA)

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The Isa Ako Babaeng Astig Aasenso (1-ABAA) is a newly formed nationwide pro-women sectoral group comprised of individuals and groups with the purpose of protecting the rights of separated and abandoned women. They hope to help women become economically empowered and financially independent by creating livelihood opportunities. If elected to Congress, they plan to enact laws that will provide access to capital to help women establish small businesses. The party's president is Margie Tajon.

It is one of 187 party-lists that have gained COMELEC accreditation and are eligible to run for a seat in Congress in the 2010 elections.

Critism

The 1-ABAA party list came into prominence late 2009 and early 2010 because of the radical and controversial bill it plans to propose in Congress if they win. It gained media attention because of the platform it presented during the filing of its COMELEC accreditation.

Critics doubt the legitimacy of the organization's platform, as there are already women’s group party-lists in Congress. Many wonder why a specific group for abandoned and separated women is needed when there are already laws in the Family Code.

However, mock surveys have shown that the party-list has gained the support of the electoral population and that it has a good chance of winning in the 2010 elections. Their party-list name comes in 3rd on the official ballot, and with a controversy tagged to their name, voters will have high recall of their group out of over 100 party-lists to choose from.

If they win a seat in 15th Philippine Congress and author the Renewal Marriage bill, they are expected to face strong opposition from the Lower House and the Catholic Church.

Renewal Marriage Bill

1-ABAA gained media spotlight with the plan to propose a bill that will put an expiration on marriage licenses after 10 year. Strongly committed couples will have to renew their license whereas those that want to separate will be spared the costly and time-consuming process of annulment. Marriage licenses that are not renewed will automatically be deemed annulled.

According to the group, the current Family Code doesn’t protect the rights of separated women who are forced to raise children on their own. The current annulment system clogs up the courts leaving the women with no recourse.

References

Citation

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