8th March 1971

Philippines first known commemoration of International Women’s Day

Hundreds of women from the KATIPUNAN or Katipunan ng Bagong Kababaihan staged an all-women rally against the issue of poverty. The rally was spearheaded by women of MAKIBAKA, an organization comprised mainly of women students and mothers from the urban poor communities; members of the Kabataang Makabayan-Women’s Bureau and those from the SDK or Samahan rig Demokratikong Kabataan. The KATIPUNAN issued a statement printed in the March 8, 1971 edition of the Manila Times under the title “RP women join liberation front”. These initial organizing efforts by women were however, nipped in the bud when then president Ferdinand Marcos declared Martial Law in 1972 and many of the members were forced to go underground.