Sunday, January 21, 2018



The Commission on Human Rights (CHR) has drawn fire from activist farmer groups angered by its findings on the bloodshed during the April 1 dispersal of protesting farmers in Kidapawan City.
The Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP) said the rights body, in its May 30 report, glossed over the atrocities committed by the government forces during the riot, which left two protesters dead, two police officers seriously injured and dozens of others hurt.
“By saying that both sides provoked the confrontation, the CHR blames the protesters and armors the PNP for violating laws on the conduct of police officers during demonstrations which state that they are barred from bearing firearms and must exercise maximum tolerance,” the group said in a statement.

The KMP said the CHR practically absolved the police from its “grave crimes” against the protesting hungry farmers.
In its 46-page report, the CHR detailed the series of events that led to the violent dispersal of at least 3,000 drought-hit farmers who were asking the government for rice and other food supplies along the Kidapawan-Davao Highway.
The report found that excessive force was used by the Philippine National Police against the farmers contrary to protocols prescribed in the police operations manual, and that it was the first to fire the shot.
On the other hand, the CHR said it also found evidence that a number of the protesters had been “induced to join the protest action through deceit by the organizers and ‘unknown persons.’”
The militant Anakpawis party-list group also expressed its resentment over the CHR resolution, describing it as “narrow and wrongly premised on the assumption that the hunger due to extreme drought was only contained in North Cotabato.”
“It is detached from reality that agriculture across the country already lost P5 billion since February 2015, that clearly establishes that farmers have lost sources of livelihood and income, hence, they have no means to secure their food needs,” Anakpawis Rep. Fernando Hicap said in a statement.
“The report did not even bother to recommend the immediate dropping of direct assault charges against the obviously incapable three pregnant farmers and six elderly” among them, Anakpawis said.
The group identified them as Arlene Candiban, six months pregnant; Eliza Candiban, five months pregnant; Rolinda Paonil, two months pregnant; Dionisio Alagos, 60 years old; Gerardo Pequero, 66; Crisanto Carlum, 72; Jovita Debalid, 68; Lolita Porras, 65, and Valentina Berden, 78.

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‘Dugo sa patubig’



The Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas strongly condemned the appointment of former AFP Chief Ricardo Visaya as the administrator of the embattled National Irrigation Administration (NIA). “Visaya’s appointment as NIA chief is a grave insult and affront to farmers. Visaya has a long list of crimes against the peasant masses. We will counter his appointment,” said KMP chairperson Joseph  Canlas.


“NIA is a civilian agency mandated to provide irrigation services to farmers and agricultural producers to help ensure food security and rice self-sufficiency. Why appoint a retired general, a human rights violator, more so, a much-reviled former AFP Chief to NIA’s top post?” asked Canlas, noting that ‘Visaya is more likely to pour blood instead of water into farmlands and irrigation canals.’


“We are demanding free irrigation, not a free reign for Visayas to continuously abuse farmers’ rights,” the KMP leader said.


Visaya was the ground commander of the 69th Infantry Batallion Philippine army during the 2004 Hacienda Luisita Massacre that killed seven farmworkers in the disputed Cojuangco-Aquino landholdings. Visaya, a trusted protege of Gen. Jovito Palparan, is also accountable for the abduction and torture of brothers Raymond and Reynaldo Manalo, the disappearance of UP students Karen Empeno and Sherlyn Cadapan, and the militarization of urban poor communities during Arroyo’s Oplan Bantay Laya.


In Mindanao, Visaya served as the commander of the Philippine Army’s 4th Infantry Division, the notorious military unit responsible for killing and forcible evacuation of farmers and Lumad and their communities in CARAGA and Northern Mindanao regions.


During the start of Oplan Bayanihan under the previous Aquino administration, the Philippine Army’s 69th Infantry Battalion which was personally trained and handled by Visaya was deployed to Davao City where it unleashed terror upon the civilian population. In 2015, the same army unit was responsible for the strafing of the home of KMP leader Aida Seisa in Davao’s Paquibato district and killing three people, including a tribal datu.


“Visaya is a legit Jovito Palparan clone. He is responsible for numerous killings of peasant and Lumad leaders, human rights abuses and military atrocities in peasant communities,” the KMP leader said.


The farmers group will protest Visaya’s appointment and Duterte’s persisting political accommodation to the retired army general. ###


MANILA — An international peasant fact-finding mission (IFFM) decried “massive landgrabbing,” land use conversion and human rights violations by government and private companies in two “big-ticket development projects” in the provinces of Tarlac and Pampanga in the Central Luzon region.

The peasant mission urged President Aquino to stop the Clark Green City of the Bases Conversion Development Authority (BCDA) and the Alviera Project of the Ayala Land Inc. which have both already affected the people’s livelihood, and will eventually displace thousands of peasants and indigenous peoples.

Clark Green City – which falls under the Aquino administration’s Public-Private Partnership scheme — will rise in the former US Air Force base Camp O’Donnel in Capas, Tarlac. The Alviera project is in the village of Hacienda Dolores in Porac, Pampanga. Both areas are part of the Zambales mountains.

One of the women farmers of Hacienda Dolores. (Photo by Ronalyn V. Olea /
Both projects aim to develop integrated mixed-use megazones, which will serve as an extension of the already-congested Metro Manila.

The IFFM reported that the two projects encroach into thousands of hectares of ancestral lands of the Aeta tribes, as well as productive and abundant farm lands, which peasants have cultivated for decades, some of which were already covered by government agrarian reform.

The IFFM report said that, in Hacienda Dolores, the residents are suffering because their farms – their only source of livelihood — have been fenced off and they have been prohibited to enter.

Two peasant leaders have been shot dead in Hacienda Dolores this year and the killings were suspected to be linked to their opposition to the Alviera projects.

“Productive agricultural forces .. are being destroyed in the name of anti-people and pro-business real estate developments,” said the IFFM report presented on Nov. 20 at the Balay Kalinaw in the University of the Philippines. “These projects are nothing but bane and curse to the lives of farmers and Aetas,” the report said.

The IFFM, “in defense of farmers and indigenous peoples’ right to land in Clark Green City and Hacienda Dolores” was led by the Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP), the Alyansa ng Magbubukid sa Gitnang Luson and the Asian Peasant Coalition (APC). It was held from Nov. 17 to 19, and participated in by peasant leaders and organizers from India, Bangladesh, Indonesia and Venezuela.

Hacienda Dolores

The village of Hacienda Dolores is the site of 1,125 hectare-Alviera project, which will develop a commercial, business, industrial district, university and research zone, residential and recreational areas. The project covers six of the eight sub-villages of Hacienda Dolores, affecting more than 1,000 households, which are mostly peasants.

The project proponent is the Ayala Land Inc., together with Leonio Land of the Leonardo Lachenal-Leonio Holdings (LLL) and its affiliate FL Property Management Corp. (FL).

The IFFM report said that in 2005, the Ayala Land and the other corporations started to claim ownership of the land, saying that they bought it from the Overseas Bank of Manila.

The FL Development Corporation also applied for an exemption from the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (Carp), which the Department of Agrarian Reform approved based on “a deceptive local ordinance declaring the lands as non-agricultural,” said the IFFM.

In 2004, farmers and village residents had tried to question the construction of the Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway (Sctex), which ate up farms covered by Carp. Little did they know that the road was meant to open the area to more landgrabbing.

As soon as the Ayala Land entered, fences and signs saying “No trespassing, private property” were put up, depriving farmers entry to their farms, livelihood and food.

A national fact-finding mission led by KMP gave the same finding last year, which shows that the situation has been prolonged, and is worsening.

This has pushed the farmers to put up a resistance, to which the private companies responded.

“Since the inception of the Alviera project, the local residents and farmers of Hacienda Dolores were met with violence and attacks,” said the IFFM. The mission said it documented “grave human rights violations perpetrated by the giant real estate corporations aided by state security forces and hired goons.”

These include attacks against members of the Aniban ng Nagkakaisang Mamamayan sa Hacienda Dolores (Aniban) such as the shooting of Modesto Posadas by motorcycle-riding men, and the lobbing of a grenade at the house of Jessel Orgas, both in December 2013. The two men were wounded in the attacks.

The killings of two peasant leaders this year remain unresolved.

On Jan. 12, Arman Padiño, 33 was killed after he and two other farmers were shot at by security guard allegedly employed by the project proponents. “The same incident was used by the corporations to arrest and imprison the village chieftain Antonio Tolentino,” said the IFFM report.

On May 2, Aniban leader and village councillor Nemelao “Melon” Garcia was shot dead when he and his wife were ambushed on their way home.

AMGL chair Joseph Canlas said there is a PNP detachment in the village, and soldiers of the 56th Infantry Battalion regularly patrol and sometimes stay in the area. The security guards of the private companies are based in nearby Sapang Uwak village, which is mostly populated by Aetas.

Clark Green City

The Master Development Plan for Clark Green City spans 9,450 hectares “of vast, productive and abundant agricultural lands, the IFFM said. The Kilusang Nagtatanggol sa Inang Kalikasan (KNIK), a local alliance opposed to the project, said the project will displace some 20,000 Aeta and farmer families.

Based on the its master plan, the project intends to develop five districts: the government district, central business district, academic district, agri-forestry research and development district, and the wellness and eco-tourism district.

The mission said that while the government is “actively enticing private business and international investors” for the project, there is no plan for the indigenous peoples and farmers that they will evict. The BCDA actually considers them “squatters.”

Ironically, the IFFM said the Aeta and farmer communities have long inhabited the site of what became the US military reservation in 1947. After the Military Bases Agreement expired in 1991, the Corazon Aquino administration formed the BCDA to maintain government ownership of the vast tracts of lands.

The IFFM report said farmer and Aeta communities in Capas and Bamban had relied mainly on the land for income, planting rice, corn, root crops like purple yam and cassava and various fruit-bearing trees. In spite of this, the BCDA claimed that 36,000 hectares of land in the area is “barren and isolated.”

KMP chairman Rafael Mariano said the government authorized the BCDA “to accelerate development” and make the area productive.

“The land is cultivated for food production. Is that not productive?” said Mariano.

Mariano also suspected that Clark Green City might be one of the “agreed locations” being eyed under the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (Edca). The Crow Valley Gunnery Range is one of the venue for Balikatan exercises. Mariano said the planned “wellness area” may actually be for rest and recreation (RnR) of US servicemen. He said that among those who had visited the area was Randal Yim, former official of the US Department of Defense.

The IFFM reported that the farmers and Aetas are being divested of the lands not only by the government, but also by landlords and sugar planters, who use their land “in exchange for a meagre income.”

“During the mission, it was revealed that sugarcanes produced in Sitio Mauricia, Bamban village are brought to the Central Azucarera de Tarlac (CAT), the sugar mill owned by the Cojuangco-Aquinos,” said the IFFM report.


Some of the IFFM delegates observed that the people in the two project areas have made their place productive and have subsisted, in spite of decades of government neglect. And now they are being even more disregarded.

Makabayan president Satur Ocampo said the government has “failed to get the side of the people and look at their problems.” He said the government must strike a balance between the people and the private sector.

“The land frontier has been exhausted, there are no more uncultivated land,” Ocampo said. “Haphazard, arbitrary land use conversion constricts the land available for food production, whereas the population is increasing.”

“The indigenous peoples are living in peace, with no support from government, no potable water,” said Raja Reddy, of the Agricultural Workers’ Union (APVVU) of India.

“They are worried, with more fear than anger. ‘Where will we go? Are we not human beings? Are we not citizens of this country,”Reddy quoted those interviewed by the mission.

Reddy called the area “a beautiful place, with its tall trees reaching the sky.” But everything will be destroyed by the project, he said. “People give power to government to support this environment, not destroy.”

The Indonesian leader from the Alliance of Agrarian Reform (Agra) said: “People there are not anti-development, but development must solve the people’s problems, not just bring infrastructure.”

Elmon David of Bayan Muna-Tarlac called the project “Black City,” since it forebodes a dark future for the affected indigenous peoples and farmers of Pampanga and Tarlac.
Ocampo said the two projects show the urgency of enacting a genuine land reform program, which will study which lands should remain for food production, and which should be for urban development.


Anakpawis partylist Rep. Fernando Hicap said the IFFM report will help him and other progressive lawmakers in the House of Representatives as they push for a congressional investigation on the effects of destructive projects in agicultural areas. Hicap said he had filed a resolution in January this year but it is still at the Committee on Rules and is yet to be delegated to an investigating committee.

Hicap mentioned that in the Nov. 19 congressional hearing for the Genuine Agrarian Reform Bill (Garb) or House Bill 252, the AFP representative from the Judge Advocate General Office said that there are 187 military reservations covering 179,000 has., but there are no more lands to be distributed to farmers.

Ocampo said that congress investigated a similar case during his time as Bayan Muna representative, in Capiz, where indigenous peoples tried to reclaim their ancestral lands covered by a military reservation. He said the military refused to turn over thousands of hectares of the reservation even though only a small part of it was being used for artillery practice.

“When the national government doesn’t take a decisive position, the people have to carry on the struggle,” he said.

Delegates came from APC member organizations: the KMP, the Agricultural Workers’ Union (APVVU) of India, Bangladesh Landless Association, Agricultural Farm Labour Federation of Bangladesh, and the Alliance of Agrarian Reform of Indonesia.

The IFFM interviewed farmers and indigenous peoples in five villages, namely Sta. Juliana, Arunguren, and Patling in Capas, and Anupul and San Vicente in Bamban, which are affected by the Clark Green City, and also made interviews in Hacienda Dolores village which is affected by the Alviera project.

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Cebu City – Dul-an sa 200 ka Bol-anong mag-uuma, mamumuo sa umahan ug mangingisda ubos sa mga progresibong pundok sa HUMABOL-KMP (Hugpong sa Mag-uumang Bol-anon-Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas), BAYAN (Bagong Alyansang Makabayan), Gabriela, Sabakan (Sandigan sa Bol-anong Kababayen-ang Nag-uma ug Nanagat)-Amihan ug ubang kaalyadong grupo, ang mipadangat sa ilang mga suliran, reklamo ug demanda atol ning buwan sa Mag-uuma, ngadto sa mga rehiyunal nga ahensya sa gobyerno nga nahimutang ning syudad.

Ang pag-anhi sa mga Bol-anon kabahin sa kalihukang gitawag og “Lakbayan ng Visayas: Pagbatok sa Kagutom ug Pagpamig-ot sa Estado” nga gipahigayon gikan petsa 17-20 dinhi sa dakbayan. Ang maong kalihukan nga gisalmotan sa liboan ka kabus nga katawhan gikan sa nagkadaiyang isla sa Kabisay-an lakip na ang Negros, Samar ug Leyte, nagtinguha nga madunggan ug mahatagan og hinanaling pagtagad sa gobyerno ang ilang mga suliran ug demanda pinaagi sa pagpalanog niini sa Cebu City nga maoy ikaduhang sentrong urban sa nasud. Nagtumong sab kini nga makuha ang suporta sa labing lapad nga katawhan alang sa ilang “lehitimong pakigbisog”.

Pinaagi sa Visayas Rural Poor Summit nga gipahigayon sa ika-duhang adlaw sa Lakbayan, gihisgutan ug gitapok sa mga delegado ang ilang mga demanda. Matud ni Racquel Autida sa Gabriela Bohol, “Nanguna namong demanda mao ang pagpatuman sa tinuod nga reporma sa yuta lakip na ang paghatag og suportang serbisyo sa panguma sama sa libreng irigasyon. Amo sab nga giduso ang pagpabarog og kaugalingong mga industriya sa Pilipinas aron makamugna’g lahutay’ng mga trabaho ug di na magsalig sa pagpangangkat og human-daang produkto gikan sa langyaw’ng nasud. Niining pamaagiha, wala na unyay mga inahan ug ubang kababayen-an nga mapugos pagpanarbaho kasagaran isip katabang didto sa ubang nasud ug mag-antos sa abuso sa ilang mga amo”.

Atol sa summit, mipasabot si Atty. Neri Colmenares sa Bayan Muna labot sa giduso nga bag-ong pamuhis sa administrasyong Duterte nga mao ang Tax Reform Acceleration with Inclusions (TRAIN) diin matud niya mupataas sa presyo sa mga batakang palaliton ug busa mayoriyang kabus ang nangunang maapektuhan.

Pinaagi sa pagsaka sa nagkadaiyang ahensya sa gobyerno, giduso sa mga Lakbayani ang ilang mga hinanaling demanda. Lakip sa opisinang gisaka sa mga Lakbayani’ng Bol-anon alang sa dayalogo mao ang DAR (Department of Agrarian Reform), DENR (Department of Environment and Natural Resources), NIA (National Irrigation Administration) ug DOLE (Department of Labor and Employment).

Samtang didto sa Plaza Independencia nga maoy gihimong temporaryong pondohanan sa mga Lakbayani, mibisita, nakighinabi ug nakighiusa usab kanila ang mga estudyante gikan sa University of the Philippines (UP), Abellana National Highschool ug uban pang tulunghaan, aron hibaloon gikan mismo sa mga mag-uuma ug mangingisda ang kalisud sa panginabuhi bunga sa matud pa, di makiangayong mga palisiya ug programa sa gobyerno sama sa gitawag nilang ” peke nga CARP (Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program)” ug “kontra-mananagat” nga balaod sa panagat nga mao ang RA 8550 ug RA 10654.

Gitapos sa mga Lakbayani ang ilang panaw kun Lakbayan kagahapon, pinaagi sa paglunsad og rali-protesta gikan sa AFP (Armed Forces of the Philippines) Central Command, ngadto na sa Police Regional Office 7 (PRO7), aron kondenahon ang nagkadaghang mga kaso sa paglapas sa tawhanong katungod lakip na ang pagpamatay sa mga sakop sa progesibong pundok ubos sa “kontra-insurhensyang programang Oplan Kapayapaan sa rehimeng US-Duterte diin militar ug pulis ang gitumbok nga mga sad-an” sumala ni Danilo Olayvar, Chairperson sa HUMABOL.

Gikan sa PRO7, gidala sa mga Lakbayani ang ilang rali-protesta didto sa dalan Colon nga maoy nagtak-op sa upat ka adlaw’ng kalihukan.#


Land not bullets

The Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP) today condemned the shooting of banana plantation farmworkers reclaiming 145 hectares of government-awarded land inside the plantation of Lapanday Foods Corporation (LFC). in Tagum City, Davao del Norte.


At around 7:20AM today, private security guards of the LFC opened fire against farmworkers and agrarian reform beneficiaries belonging to the Madaum Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries Inc. (MARBAI). Based on initial reports, at least seven farmers and land reform advocates were injured in the strafing incident.


“The farmworkers are only reclaiming the land that is rightfully theirs so they can start planting food crops for their consumption. Farmers are only exercising their moral and democratic right to till the land but security guards, upon the order of the Lapanday management, opened fire and strafed them,” said Antonio Flores, secretary General of KMP.


Among those injured were Emmanuel Buladaco of Tagum City, Rico Saladaga of Brgy Tibagon; Talban Miparanum of Brgy Kingking; Belardo Francisco of Brgy. Tagdangua; Jojo Gomez of Brgy Magnaga all located in Pantukan town and Jose Balucos of Brgy. Teresa, Maco in Compostela Valley. The wounded farmworkers were rushed to the regional hospital in Tagum City.


During the dispersal, LFC personnel sprayed chemicals on the protesting farmworkers using the aircraft utilized for aerial spraying in banana plantations. The farmworkers took refuge in a nearby church.


On December 9, hundreds of MARBAI farmworkers launched collective actions and entered the LFC compound to assert their installation to the awarded lands. Despite the harassment from security guards, they successfully entered the plantation. This morning, the security guards attacked the farmworkers as LFC personnel was scheduled to harvest bananas in the disputed land.


In the 1990s, the land, formerly owned by Hijo Plantation Inc. was voluntary offered for land reform coverage. The land was awarded to employees and three groups of ARBs were organized which later formed themselves into cooperatives.


In 1999, the Hijo Employees Agrarian Reform Cooperative 1. (HEARBCO 1) entered into growership contract agreement with Hijo Plantation Inc. (now Lapanday Foods Corp.) and Global Fruits Corp. for a period of 10 years. After years of growership contract with Lapanday, the HEARBCO 1 incurred more than P1-B debt and a section of farmers subsequently rejected the renegotiated growership contract with Lapanday because it is grossly disadvantageous to them. They organized and formed MARBAI and filed for petition for reinstatement to their tillage. A compromise agreement between HEARBCO 1 and LFC was agreed in 2011 reducing the debt to P800,000. In December 2015, Provincial Agrarian Reform Adjudicator Jose Nilo Tillano issued an order reinstating the MARBAI farmworkers.


“Two years after the order was issued, the farmworkers are still not installed on the lands. We call on DAR to act swiftly and decisively on this matter to prevent any more violence,” said Flores.


Last Friday, despite harassment from security guards, the farmers successfully entered the LFC compound as they asserted to reclaim the land. On November 18, hundreds of ARBs from Mindanao led by MARBAI, started launching actions and protests to reclaim the lands and start farming again. Thousands of farmworkers were unjustly terminated by the LFC in 2011.


Lapanday Foods Corp. is owned by the family of former Department of Agriculture Secretary Cito Lorenzo. ###


Reference: Antonio Flores, Secretary General, 0921-2726682 


The Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP) said the moratorium on land use conversion and the condonation of bank penalties would provide a respite to “tens of thousands of farmers who are facing threats of eviction” due to projects in agricultural lands and the Land Bank foreclosure.

The KMP cited as examples land use conversion cases at Hacienda Luisita in Tarlac, Hacienda Looc in Batangas and the agricultural lands affected by the MRT-7 project in Bulacan.

On September 12, 2016, the Presidential Agrarian Reform Council (PARC) approved a Two-Year Moratorium on Land Use Conversion (LUC) and started preparing an Executive Order for its implementation.

According to DAR Secretary Rafael Mariano, “the Executive Order Declaring a Moratorium on the Processing and Approval of All Applications  for Land Use Conversion of Agricultural Lands to Non-Agricultural Purposes shall cover the following:”

– all awarded lands under RA 6657 as amended, PD 27 and other agrarian reform laws

– all agricultural lands with Notices of Coverage (NOCs)

– all irrigated and irrigable lands

– all prime agricultural lands

– retention areas of landowners which are tenanted or occupied by tenant-farmers.

– all agricultural lands with presence of agricultural activities and cultivated by farmers, individually or collectively.

– the moratorium shall cover the 4.7 million hectares agricultural lands distributed or awarded to agrarian reform beneficiaries, landholdings under premature or illegal conversion and landholdings without conversion order issued by DAR which has the exclusive authority to approve and disapprove of land use conversion.

– PARC will create a Task Force to assess the situation of Land Use Conversion in the country.

– DAR will promulgate the rules and regulations for the Land Use Conversion moratorium order.


Wounded agrarian reform beneficiaries remain in critical condition


Madaum, Tagum City—Undaunted Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries militantly cut the bitter banana trees of Lapanday Food Corporation (LFC) as an act of collective defiance, like cedulas being torn during the cry of Pugad Lawin. Farmers continue to assert their right to land amid threats and shootings from LFC gunmen.

Madaum Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries Association Inc (MARBAI) decided to raise their protest after the LFC guards opened fire at them yesterday, hurting five of its members and a supporter. “Wala na kaming aasahan pa sa mapanlinlang at sakim na kumpanya ng berdugong Lapanday. Ang mahalaga ngayon ay ang mabawi namin ang aming lupa, amin ito kaya dapat kami ang magsasaka.”

In a statement by Antonio Tuyak, UGMAD-TRA Spokesperson. MARBAI claims that the 1,469 hectares of land from Hijos Plantation Incorporated belongs to the the 1,291 agrarian reform beneficiaries as it was awarded to them. Meanwhile, the struggle of MARBAI continue to gain support. Hugpong sa Mag-Uuma sa Walog Compostela (HUMAWAC) a farmers alliance express support calling more farmers to join the MARBAI struggle. #

(photo by Kilab Multimedia)





Adyenda ng mga Magsasaka sa gobyernong Duterte

Isang taon ni Duterte: Puro pangako, walang pagbabago

Sa pag-uumpisa ng panunungkulan ni Pangulong Rodrigo Dutere noong nakaraang taon, tinipon ng malawak na hanay ng magbubukid, mangingisda, manggagawa sa agrikultura, kababaihan at kabataang magsasaka, at iba pang masang anakpawis sa kanayunan,ang kanilang pangkalahatan at partikular na mga kahilingan bilang bahagi ng kabuuang People’s Agenda ng mamamayan na isinumite sa Malacanang.

Lalo na sa panahong na nagtapos na ang bisa ng bigo at huwad na Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP), isang mayor na kahilingan ng kilusang magbubukid at ng mamamayan sa administrasyong Duterte ang pagdideklarang urgent o kagyat ng pagsasabatas ng Genuine Agrarian Reform Bill (GARB) na naglalayong saklawin ang lahat ng lupaing agrikultural sa bansa at ipamahagi nang libre sa mga magsasakang wala o kulang ang lupa. Sa una pa lang, alam ni Pangulong Duterte ang pangangailangan ng isang bago at tunay na programa sa reporma sa lupa.

Matagal nang ipinaglalaban ng mga magsasaka ang isang reporma sa lupa na tunay na magbibigay ng katarungang panlipunan sa masang anakpawis sa kanayunan at magwawakas sa monopolyo sa lupa at sa iba’t ibang tipo ng pyudal at malapydudal na pagsasamantala na siyang pinag-uugatan ng  kanilang kahirapan at kagutuman.

Ang mga pangako ni Duterte para sa makabuluhang reporma noong panahon ng eleksyon, ang kanyang bakgrawnd sa pakikipagmabutihan sa hayag na demokratikong kilusang masa at maging sa mga rebolusyonaryo noong alkalde pa lamang siya ng Davao City, ang kanyang pagpipresentang sosyalista, makakaliwa, o kontra sa dayuhang kapangyarihan, ang paghirang ng mga progresibo sa ilang ahensya ng gobyerno at ang ibinigay niyang komitment sa muling pagbubukas ng usapang pangkapayapaan, ang naging tungtungan para seryosong hamunin ng kilusang magbubukid ang bagong administrasyon na magpatupad ng tunay na reporma sa lupa at pambansang industriayalisasyon.

Ilan sa mga kaugnay na panawagan ng militanteng mga organisasayong magbubukid para sa unang 100 araw ng gobyernong Duterte ang pagbabasura sa mga tangka na palawigin o muling buhayin ang kontra-magsasakang CARP o CARPER;  ang pag-rebyu at pagpapatigil sa mga inilabas na Land Use Conversion Order;ang pagwawasto sa bogus na pagpapatupad ng nakaraang administrasyon sa pamamahagi ng Hacienda Luisita sa mga magsasaka; at ang kagyat na pamamahagi ng iba pang mayor na hacienda at landholdings sa bansa, gaya ng 2,900 ektaryang Hacienda Dolores sa Pampanga, 3,100 ektaryang Fort Magsaysay sa Nueva Ecija, 8,650 ektaryang Hacienda Looc sa Batangas, 40,000 ektaryang Yulo King Ranch sa Palawan, 5,000 ektaryang Eduardo Cojuangco Jr. Estate sa Negros, at marami pang iba.

Ilang ulit nang lumagpas ang unang isang daang araw ng gobyernong Duterte at papatapos na nga unang taon nito. Para sa mga Pilipinong magbubukid, malinaw na hanggang ngayon ay wala pa ring makabuluhan o tiyak na pambansang patakarang naitatakda ang Pangulo para sa isang bago at tunay na programa sa reporma sa lupa. Nakatayo pa rin ang malalawak na hacienda at plantasyon sa bansa kagaya ng Hacienda Luisita. Wala pa ring malinaw o kategorikal na deklarasyon ang Malacanang na kinikilala nito ang karapatan ng mga magsasaka na magbungkal ng lupa at magtanim nang ayon sa kanilang pangangailangan.

Sa isang banda, malugod na sinalubong ng mga magbubukid at ng demokratikong kilusang masa ang pagkakahirang kay Rafael “Ka Paeng” Mariano bilang kalihim ng Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR). Sa kauna-unahang pagkakataon, isang lider-magsasaka ang naitalaga para pamunuan ang departamentong nakilala sa mahabang panahon bilang tagapagpatupad ng kontra-magsasakang mga programa. Ibinukas ng bagong pambansang pamunuan ng DAR ang tarangkahan nito sa mga samahan ng magsasaka at nagsikap na i-ayon ang mga gawain nito sa pagtataguyod sa karapatan sa lupa ng mga nagbubungkal.

Gayunman, malalim na nakaangkla pa rin sa imperyalistang neoliberal na mga patakaran ang pangkalahatang tunguhin sa ekonomya ng gobyernong Duterte. Ang pakete ng mga programang itinutulak ng mga economic manager ng Malacanang para sa pagsusubasta ng malalawak na lupain sa dayuhang mga korporasyon, pagpapatupad ng mga Private-Public Partnership project sa imprastraktura, ekoturismo at enerhiya, pagsusulong sa pinasyalisasyon sa agrikultura, pagtataguyod sa liberalisasyon sa kalakalan ng produktong agrikultural, pagkunsinti sa mapanirang pagmimina at pagtotroso, ay nananatiling malalaking balakid sa makatarungang mga mithiin ng mga magsasaka at sa anumang positibong pagsisikap ng bagong DAR.

Gayundin, ang patuloy na kawalan ng isang bago at tunay na batas at programa para sa reporma sa lupa, o ang pag-iral pa rin ng maka-panginoong-maylupang mga probisyon ng CARP, ay nakapagtatakda ng kongretong mga limitasyon sa pagpapatupad ng maka-magsasakang mga layunin ng DAR sa ilalim ni Secretary Mariano. Idagdag pa rito ang tahasan at marahas na pagsuway ng malalaking panginoong maylupa at dayuhang agro-korporasyon, kasapakat ng mga lokal na burukrata, pulis at militar, sa mga kautusan ng bagong DAR.

Sa tulak na rin ng kilusang magbubukid, positibong naipatatawag ngayon ni Duterte ang mga pulong ng Presidential Agrarian Reform Council (PARC) matapos ang sampung taong pagkakabalaho ng mga ito sa ilalim ng dalawang nagdaang administrasyon. Subalit, kapansin-pansin ang mabagal pa ring paglalabas nito ng mahahalagang desisyong pumapabor sa mga magsasaka.

Hindi pa rin, halimbawa, naipipinal ang ipinangako ni Duterte na Executive Order na nagtatakda ng dalawang-taong moratoryum sa kumbersyon ng mga lupang sakahan, habang agresibo namang nangangampanya ang malalaking panginoong maylupa at ang mga economic manager ng Malacanang laban dito. Nakabinbin pa rin ang desisyon sa panawagan ng mga agrarian reform beneficiary para sa kondonasyon ng mga utang sa amortisasyon sa lupa.

Samantala, bagama’t binawi na ng PARC ang isang iskemang Stock Distribution Option (SDO) sa Negros at isang kontratang Agribusiness Venture Agreement (AVA) sa Mindanao, nananatili ang pagsasamantala at pagpapahirap sa libu-libong magsasaka at manggagawang bukid sa marami pang SDO, AVA, leaseback, contract growing, corporative scheme, block farming, at aryendo. Ang malalawak na tubuhan at plantasyon ng saging, pinya,  palm oil, rubber, at iba pa, ay karaniwang umiiral pa rin sa ilalim ng ganitong mapanlinlang, mapanghati, at mapangamkam na mga kalakaran.

Ang usapang pangkapayapaan sa pagitan ng gobyernong Duterte at ng National Democratic Front of the Philippines na napasimulan noong nakaraang Agosto 2016 ay kinilala ng kilusang magbubukid bilang isang mahusay na pagkakataon para maisulong ang mga panawagan ng sektor. Ang pagsasalubong ng magkabilang panig sa prinsipyo ng libreng pamamahagi ng lupa noong ikaapat na round ng peace talks ay isang mahalagang pag-usad sa pagbabalangkas ng Comprehensive Agreement on Social and Economic Reforms (CASER) partikular kaugnay ng mga probisyon nito sa Agrarian Reform and Rural Development.

Ang pagkakaudlot, kung gayon, ng ikalimang round ng pormal na negosasyon noong nakaraang buwan, na dulot ng maniobra ng mga militarista at tutang neoliberal sa gobyerno, ay isang malinaw na paghadlang sa pagbubuo ng mahahalagang repormang sosyo-ekonomiko. Nagbibigay ito ng malaking dahilan para pagdudahan ang sinseridad ng gobyernong Duterte sa pagresolba sa ugat ng armadong tunggalian sa bansa at sa paghahangad ng tunay at makatarungang kapayapaan para sa mamamayan.

Isa lamang ito sa mga palatandaan ng sistematikong pagbigo ng kampo ng malalaking panginoong maylupa, burgesya komprador at imperyalistang kapangyarihan sa mga panawagan ng mga magsasaka at mamamayan para sa tunay na reporma sa lupa at pambansang industriyalisasyon.

Sa kabila ng mga postura ni Duterte na tumutuligsa sa dominasyon ng imperyalistang US at ng mga salita sa plano di umano ng gobyerno na magsulong ng nagsasariling patakaran sa ekonomya at relasyong panlabas,  walang pang makitang kongretong mga hakbang kaugnay nito ang mamamayan. Nakapaloob pa rin ang bansa sa di-pantay ng mga kasunduang panlabas sa kalakalan at militar gaya ng Worl Trade Organization (WTO),  Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), ASEAN Free Trade Agreement (AFTA), ASEAN Integration, Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement, at iba pa.

Bagama’t nag-isyu na kamakailan ng isang Executive Order ang Malacanang na nagpapalawig sa bisa ng Quantitative Restriction sa imported na bigas, nananatili ang pagsandig ng gobyerno sa importasyon ng pangunahing pagkain ng Pilipino. Imbes na magsulong ng komprehensibong programa sa pagpapaunlad sa pambansang produksyon ng palay, pagbibigay ng suportang serbisyo sa sakahan tulad ng subsidyo sa butil, libreng irigasyon, at pagpapababa ng presyo ng langis at iba pang gastos sa produksyon, patuloy ang pagtalima ng gobyerno sa neoliberal na imposisyon ng WTO sa kalakalan at agrikultura. Patuloy nitong sinasadlak ang kabuhayan ng mga magsasaka, nilalagay sa panganib ang seguridad sa pagkain ng bansa, habang pinasasahol ang operasyon ng kartel sa bigas at ismagling.  Dagdag pa, saklaw pa rin ng papasahol na patakaran sa importasyon ang iba pangproduktong agrikultural gaya ng asukal, gulay, isda, manok, karneng baboy at baka, na patuloy na nagpapaliit sa kita ng lokal na mga prodyuser at nagpataas pang lalo sa presyo ng pagkain.

Sa puspusang pangangampanya ng kilusang magbubukid, naitulak ang Kongreso na magtaktakda ng pambansang badyet sa libreng serbisyong irigasyon para sa taong 2017 habang nakasalang naman sa Senado at Mababang Kapulungan ang mga panukalang batas para rito. Gayunman, sistematikong nanlilito ang National Irrigation Authority para maikutan ang alituntunin sa pagpapatupad sa libreng irigasyon na siya rin mismo ang nagbalangkas. Bukod dito, obligado pa ring bayaran ng mga magsasaka ang nagpatung-patong nang back account sa irigasyon sa kabila ng malakas na panawagan para burahin na ang mga ito.

Ang P85 bilyong coco levy fund ay hindi pa rin naibabalik sa mga magsasaka sa niyugan habang tusong itinutulak pa rin ang pribatisasyon nito ng mga maka-panginoong-maylupang mambabatas at ng mga kroni at oligarko na dati nang nagpasasa sa pondong ito. Patuloy pa ring kinukopo ng malalaking plantador at negosyante sa produksyon ng asukal ang Sugar Amelioration Fund na dapat ay nakalaan para sa mga manggagawa sa tubuhan at asukarera.

Ang mga biktima ng kalamidad gaya ng Yolanda ay hindi pa rin nabibigyan ng tunay na ayuda. Mas masaklap, patuloy silang naitataboy sa dati nilang mga komunidad sa baybayin at iba pang lugar dahil sa mga patakarang gaya ng no-build-no-dwelling-zone na pawang kasangkapan ng mga pribadong negosyo sa pangisdaan, ekoturismo at pagmimina para sa pangangamkam ng lupa at katubigan.

Patuloy na pinahihirapan ng mga umiiral na patakaran at batas sa pangisdaan ang masang mangingisda sa buong kapuluan. Ang inamyendahang Fisheries Code ay ginagamit pa rin para sa pagkontrol at pagmonopolyo sa karagatan at iba pang pangisdaan ng malalaki at dayuhang negosyante sa pangisdaan. Dumarami ang proyektong PPP sa reklamasyon sa mga baybayin na di lamang nagpapalikas sa mga mangingisda kundi nagpapahamak sa kalikasan.

Hanggang sa ngayon, wala pa ring aktuwal na napaparusahan sa mga nagpakana at kasapakat ng dating Pangulong BS Aquino sa pork barrel scam na walang-kahihiyang ginamit ang ngalan ng mga magsasaka para dambungin ang pera ng bayan. Ganito rin ang lagay ng iba pang mga kaso ng korapsyon kagaya ng maanomalyang Emergency Shelter Assistance na dapat ay para sa mga biktima ng Yolanda.

Ang lahat ng ito ay sapat na upang isalarawan ang kabiguan ng administrayong Duterte sa maagap at mapagpasyang pagpapatupad ng reporma para sa kagalingan ng mga magsasaka at mamamayan. Kaya naman nagpapatuloy ang militanteng kilusan ng mga magbubukid sa kanayunan upang igiit ang kanilang karapatan sa lupa at kabuhayan.

Subalit, gaya ng kalagayan sa ilalim ng nagdaang administrasyon, ang mga nakikibakang magsasaka sa kanayunan ang pangunahin ding target ng nagpapatuloy na pasismo ng estado. Ang Oplan Kapayapaan ng rehimeng Duterte ay gaya lamang din ng pinalitan nitong Oplan Bayanihan ng rehimeng US-Aquino o ng Oplan Bantay Laya sa panahon ni Arroyo. Nagpapatuloy ang militarisasyon sa kanayunan lalo na mula nang magdeklara ang Armed Forces of the Philippines ng all-out war noong Pebrero. Sa kasalukuyan, humigit-kumulang ay 65 na ang magsasakang biktima ng pamamaslang. May mga naiulat na ring mga kaso kung paano ginagamit ang gera kontra droga laban sa hanay ng mga magsasaka.Nagpapatung-patong na rin ang mga kaso ng harasment, iligal na pang-aaresto at pagpapakulong, at pagpapalikas sa mga buu-buong komunidad ng magsasaka at katutubo dahil sa tumitinding operasyong militar sa mga nayon.

Ibayo pa itong lumala matapos magdeklara ng batas militar si Duterte sa buong Mindanao noong Mayo 23. Terorismo ng mga grupong Maute at iba pang ikinakabit sa ISIS di umano ang target ng martial law subalit malinaw na ang terorimo mismo ng AFP at PNP ang pangunahing siyang nagdudulot ng karahasan at kaguluhan sa Marawi at karatig na mga lugar. Ilang daang sibilyang Moro, magsasaka at mamamayan ang nasalanta ng araw-araw na pambobomba na humantong na sa isang krisis humanitarian at ekonomiko. Ang presensya ngayon ng pwersang Amerikano sa Mindanao para di umano tumulong sa laban sa terorismo ay lubhang nakababahala at nagpapatunay lamang sa gawa ni hindi pa nakakawala ang rehimeng Duterte sa tanikala ng imperyalistang US.

Noong Mayo, pinuri ng marami ang pagpunta ni Duterte sa Mendiola para sabihin sa mga nagkakampuhang magsasaka mula sa Madaum Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries Inc. (MARBAI) mula sa Tagum City na suportado niya ang kanilang pagkilos para ma-okupa ang lupa sa Lapanday na matagal nang ipinagkakait sa kanila. Ilang araw matapos nito, matagumpay na napasok ng daan-daang magsasaka ang lupain sa Lapanday at hanggang ngayon ay nakapusisyon sila doon at naglulunsad ng kilusang bungkalan. Ang tagumpay na ito ay hindi makakamit kung hind naging malawak at malakas ang pagkilos ng mga magsasaka at ang suporta sa kanila ng iba pang sektor. Ang sustenidong pagkilos na ito ang nagtulak kay Duterte na sumang-ayon sa kanilang kahilingan.

Sa ganitong diwa isinusulong sa pambansang saklaw ng kilusang magbubukid ang kasalukuyang kampanya at kilusan para buwagin ang mga hacienda at plantasyon sa bansa at sama-sama itong bungkalin at pakinabangan. Bagamama’t puspusang ikinakampanya ang pagsasabatas sa GARB o ang pagtitibay ng CASER, o ang patuloy na paghamon kay Duterte at paniningil sa kanyang mga pangako, sadyang hindi na hihintayin pa ng mga magsasaka, manggagawang bukid, katutubo, at iba pang masang anakpawis sa kanayunan, ang aktuwal na mga batas, programa o kasunduang ito upang maisakatuparan ang panawagan para sa libreng pamamahagi ng lupa.

Sa pamamagitan ng sama-sama at mapangahas na pagkilos sa mga kampuhan, barikada, welga, okupasyon at bungkalan, nagiging kagyat at materyal na pwersa ang mga kahilingan ng mga magsasaka para sa tunay na repormang agraryo. Nakita na natin ito sa pagbubuwag ng mga taga-Hacienda Luisita sa pader ng RCBC noong Abril at sa pagpasok ng mga manggawang bukid sa Lapanday noong Mayo. Sunud-sunod na ring naikakasa ang ganitong mga laban sa iba’t ibang bahagi ng Luzon, Visayas, at Mindanao.

Bahagi ang mga pagkilos na ito sa pangkalahatang pagpapalawak ng pambansa demokratikong kilusan na siya ring marapat na tahakin upang higit pang makumbinsi o mapuwersa ang rehimeng Duterte na maghunos-dili sa kanyang tunguhing pasista at maka-imperyalista.  Sakaling hindi na mangimi ang rehimeng Duterte na tuluyan nang maging pangunahing kasangkapan ng imperyalistang US at ng lokal na naghaharing uri sa Pilipinas, nakahanda ang kilusan ng magbubukid, kasama ang mga manggagawa at iba pang api at pinagsasamantalahang sektor na paigtingin ang laban sa pyudalismo, burukrata kapitalismo, pasismo, at imperyalismo. ###





Bicol coco farmers “takes over” Legaspi Oil Mill, ST contingent picket PCA, Mendiola

Small coconut farmers from Southern Luzon led by the claimants’ movement Coco Levy Funds Ibalik sa Amin (CLAIM) and the Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP) today staged coordinated protests against President Aquino’s Executive Orders 179 and 180 that seeks to privatize the coco levy funds and assets.

The Southern Tagalog contingent led by the Katipunan ng mga Samahang Magbubukid sa Timog Katagalugan (Kasama-TK) picketed the Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA) and trooped to Mendiola Bridge.

Coordinated protests in Bicol, on the other hand, were led by CLAIM-Bicol and the Bicol Coconut Planters Association Inc. (BCPAI) and staged a symbolic take-over of the Legazpi Oil Mills and picketed the PCA in Legaspi City, in Albay.

In Camarines Sur farmers held a protest at the United Coconut Planters Bank and PCA in Naga City, while Masbate coconut farmers also staged protest actions at the local PCA.

The peasant groups strongly opposed Aquino’s recently issued Executive Orders 179 and 180 directing the “transfer and reconveyance to the government and the subsequent privatization of all coco levy funds and assets” including but not limited to shares of stock in San Miguel Corporation (SMC), the Coconut Industry Investment Fund (CIIF) Oil Mills, CIIF Holding Companies, the UCPB.

CLAIM national coordinator Nestor Villanueva said “small coconut farmers are fed up of Aquino’s plunder and deception. Aquino’s privatization and auction of the UCPB, CIIF Oil Mills, and other coco levy funded assets are an outright denial and deprivation of our just and legitimate claim over the coco levy funds.” “Our protest seeks to send a strong political message to Aquino that the CIIF-Oil Mills and the UCPB are not for sale,” Villanueva said adding that Aquino must also return small coconut farmers’ money amounting to an estimated P80 billion recovered from SMC that is now in the Bureau of Treasury. 72.2 percent of the UCPB was purchased by the government using coco levy funds while CIIF Oil Mills were also established using the small coconut farmers’ money.

“The coco levy funds and assets are owned by small coconut farmers and not by the government. We demand Aquino to withdraw his plunderous executive orders and give back our money,” Villanueva said.

CLAIM-Bicol coordinator Bert Autor said that “Aquino’s executive orders are obviously designed to once again plunder the coco levy funds.” “Aquino is racing against time. He wants to plunder the coco levy fund before the Filipino people forces him to resign or even before he steps down in 2016,” Autor said.

Autor warned that Aquino’s tremendous desire to plunder small coconut farmers’ money would hasten his imminent downfall.

KMP chair Rafael Mariano said Executive Orders 179 and 180 clearly demonstrate “the height of the President’s greed.” “EO 179 and 180 shows the haciendero President’s insatiable greed and penchant against farmers and proves that he cannot be trusted by small coconut farmers,” Mariano said.

He said “EO 179 and 180 strengthened state control over the funds by declaring that all coco levy funds belong to the government which did not contribute a single cent to the funds.”

“Aquino deceived, deprived, and denied small coconut farmers of their just and legitimate claim over hundreds of billions of pesos worth of coco levy fund and assets. Aquino’s ouster from power is in order,” the peasant said. The KMP and CLAIM insist that “the oil mills, the UCPB, and the SMC shares are owned by small coconut farmers” and that “Aquino has no legal and moral authority to sell these coco levy funded corporations and assets.”

“It is therefore just and legitimate to escalate direct actions to reclaim the coco levy funds and assets and thwart Aquino’s attempt to plunder the funds anew,” the KMP and CLAIM said.

Ang Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP) ay demokratiko at militanteng kilusan ng mga magsasaka, manggagawang bukid, kababaihang magsasaka at kabataang magbubukid. Ito ay may animnapu’t limang panlalawigang balangay (65 provincial chapters) sa labinlimang panrehiyong balangay (15 regional chapters) na binubuo ng mahigit dalawang milyong kasapian mula sa Luzon, Visayas at Mindanao.

Farmers and indigenous peoples protest outside President Benigno Aquino III’s house in Times St., Quezon City. Photo contributed by Unyon ng mga Manggagawa sa Agrikultura (UMA).
Farmers and indigenous peoples protest outside President Benigno Aquino III’s house in Times St., Quezon City. Photo contributed by Unyon ng mga Manggagawa sa Agrikultura (UMA).
Farmers and indigenous peoples protest outside President Benigno Aquino III’s house in Times St., Quezon City. Photo contributed by Unyon ng mga Manggagawa sa Agrikultura (UMA).

KMP condemns Palace for illegal arrest of its Secretary General;
PDI – Palace slams KMP over violent protest at Aquino residence

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Ang Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP) ay demokratiko at militanteng kilusan ng mga magsasaka, manggagawang bukid, kababaihang magsasaka at kabataang magbubukid. Ito ay may animnapu’t limang panlalawigang balangay (65 provincial chapters) sa labinlimang panrehiyong balangay (15 regional chapters) na binubuo ng mahigit dalawang milyong kasapian mula sa Luzon, Visayas at Mindanao.