Panamanian Democratic Independent Movement
P.O. Box 250-505, Brooklyn, NY 11225
Tel: 718/513-0205 – 718/789-9037
November 11, 2007
Dear Paisano and Paisana:
With the passage of the “Voto en el Exterior” law in Panama earlier in December 2006, on April 14, 2007 a group of Panamanians in New York established an independent movement to take advantage of the hard won right to vote abroad. We felt that those of us who live outside of Panama should have a voice in the policy decisions and directions of their country of birth --- irrespective of which political party was in power. On that day the Movimiento Democratico Independiente Panameño (MODIPA) was born.
The founders of this movement believed that through a disciplined, structured and collective vote --- one that reflected a common direction and a commitment to the same ideals --- their voices would be heard.
Since then, MODIPA, which is the Spanish Acronym of the movement, has steadfastly been involved in:
· Registering Panamanians to vote. The assumption: a sizeable voter base will propel Presidential candidates to address the issues defined by the Movement.
· Establishing a campaign to change Article 13 of the Constitution of Panama which denies us “dual citizenship.” Without this, those who acquired another nationality are now not eligible to vote.
· Drafting an initial “Platform for Political Action”, a set of political issues to be presented to aspiring Presidential candidates seeking our collective support.
First First Electronic Convention of Panamanian Residing Abroad
Date: Saturday, November 24, 2007
Time: 2:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. Further information to follow
a) To involve as many eligible “compatriotas” as possible in its Independent voter registration drive.
b) To share information on the Panamanian voter registration process, encouraging “paisanos” everywhere to register and vote.
c) To share the process for registering the sons and daughters of Panamanians born outside of Panama, who, according to Panama’s Constitution, are eligible to register and vote, providing that they are in possession of a “cedula.”
d) To expand MODIPA’s membership and participation.
e) To present for ratification its “Platform for Political Action.”
f) To become a functional, dynamic and operational Movement.
This Live Electronic Convention is the first ever attempted by Panamanians. It is structured to permit your full participation. You will be able to hear and be heard, and to do so from your home and your computer. There will be no cost to you.
WE INVITE AND URGE YOU TO PARTICIPATE
We of MODIPA believe that it is time that we come together as one to let our collective voices be heard, that we build a movement from the bottom up --- not a political party --- not against any one party or group --- but a movement that will speak and fight, in all forums, for Justice --- Economic, Social, Political and Cultural --- for all Panamanians irrespective of race, color, creed, gender, or sexual orientation. It is time, we believe, that those who have been historically marginalized be participants in the development of the new Panama.
If you agree with the conceptual approach that we have expressed please inform us by e-mail that you will attend.
In so doing you will be included in the roster of participants and will have access to all information that will be used at the convention. If you share a different view, then this convention is not for you.
IT IS IMPERATIVE THAT WE RECEIVE YOUR E-MAIL NO LATER THAT NOVEMBER 20TH, 2007.
Further information will follow.
“Ni millones ni limosnas…. Queremos Justicia!”
Dr. Carlos E. Russell
Carlos E. Russell
Earl L. Williams
Initial Regional Representatives
Director, Voters Registration
Humberto Williams, Co-Chair
Sylvia Fisher, Co-Chair
Brenda Greene, Co-Chair
Nubin Mwaata, Co-Chair
Director, Public Affairs
Earl L. Williams
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