Bicol rights group urges LGUs to investigate military abuses

Planking vs Oplan Bayanihan in Bicol. Photo by
Planking vs Oplan Bayanihan in Bicol. Photo by

Three days camp out and caravan vs Oplan Bayanihan launch

LEGAZPI CITY – Twelve thousand (12, 000) Bicolanos storms major cities of the Bicol Region to ventilate increasing number of human rights violations under President Benigno Aquino III’s watch. The group under Kilusan Laban sa Militarisasyon sa Kabikolan slump the Aquino administration for failing to render justice to the victims of human rights violations of the previous administration.

“It seems that PNOY is trying to surpass the human rights violations record of former president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. His 1 year and 5 months as president recorded 24 cases of extrajudicial killings, 39 threat, harassment and intimidation cases, 18 unlawful arrests, 17 violation of domicile and 20 cases of abduction as of August 2011 in Bicol alone.” – lamented Vince Casilihan, Karapatan-Bikol.

“The civil suits filed against former president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo should not be credited to PNOY administration for it is the victims and their relatives who initiated and pursued the cases. The government must walk its talk of “righteous path” by seriously looking into these cases and bring justice to the victims.”- added Casilihan.

Menwhile, Fred Mansos of Albay People’s Organization commended the 14 barangay captains of Guinobatan, Albay who stood firm with their people calling for the withdrawal of military presence under 901st Brigade in their barangays. Said barangay captains attended the committee hearing initiated by the municipal government of Guinobatan and Commission of Human Rights. Among the issues raised were the cases of intimidation, harassment, forcing the residents to join the Barangay Defense System (BDS) and military scouting.

“The peasant sector is affected by Oplan Bayanihan and continuing military operations. Peasants are afraid to go farming for fear that they might be mistaken to NPAs which usually happens. The military is also being use to implement the government’s program on land conversion, mining operations, and large haciendas.”- said Felix Paz, Kilusang Mayo Uno-Bikol.

The peasant leader emphasized that the continuing large scale mining operations in Rapu-Rapu, Albay, Camarines Norte, Aroroy Masbate, and Matnog, Sorsogon are attributed to the loyalty of military to the mining companies.

“Oplan Bayanihan is PNOY’s formula for peace characterized with blatant deception and intensified militarization. Coupled with bogus development program for the poor Bicolanoes, the government hope that OPB will end triumphant. However, just like Arroyo’s Oplan Bantay Laya, Aquino administration will suffer defeat.”- said Tessa Lopez, Bayan-Bikol.

Lastly, the group appeal to local government units of the six provinces of the Bicol region to follow the courageous effort displayed by the barangay captains of Guinobatan, Albay who fought and will continue fighting side by side with their people against human rights violations.

The Kilusan Laban sa Militarisasyon call on the human rights lover out there to join and support their cause.

Copyright 2011 All rights reserved.  Read Syndication Policy.



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