OCEANA’s MINING PERMIT RENEWAL – 25 more years of violence and destruction
LILAK (Purple Action for Indigenous Women’s Rights) believes that President Duterte’s impending renewal of the mining agreement of OceanaGold Philippines Inc. (OGPI) for another 25 years presents clear and present danger – not just to the Tuwali people in Brgy. Didipio, Kasibu, Nueva Vizcaya, but to other rural and indigenous communities in the country.
The renewal of OGPI’s Financial and Technical Assistance Agreement (FTAA) assures another 25 years of violence, harassment, destruction of the environment, loss of livelihood, and the deterioration of health which will affect not only the people of Didipio, but the whole province of Nueva Vizcaya. These are the very reasons that for more than 25 years, the Tuwali community has been consistently opposing the Australian-Canadian mining corporation even before it has been granted its FTAA in 1994.
Identified CARP Beneficiaries’ homes demolished amid pandemic
Hermosa Bataan – Members of the the Samahang Nagkakaisang Magsasaka ng Barangay Sumalo (SANAMABASU) urgently calls the national government through the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) to intervene to suspend the ejectment/demolition orders issued by the Dinalupihan Regional Trial Court, for humanitarian reasons amid the threats posed by the Covid-19 pandemic. This was after several houses were demolished by property developer Riverforest Development Corporation (RDC) last Wednesday, May 5, 2021.
The said decision will also affect more than 50 prospective Comprehensive Agrarian Reform (CARP) beneficiaries, 18 of whom are slated for ejectment in the coming weeks. This ejectment order proceeded despite an appeal already filed by SANAMABASU in the Court of Appeals.
Hinggil sa harassment ng PNP sa pagkilos ngayong Mayo Uno 2021
KINOKONDENA ng Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino (BMP) – kasama ang iba’t ibang samahan ng manggagawa na ngangalsada sa Dakilang Araw ng Paggawa – ang ginawang pagharang ng kapulisan sa planong pagmartsa sa kahabaan ng Espana Avenue patungong Mendiola.
Ang ginawang harassment ng PNP ay paglabag sa lehitimong ehersisyo ng mga karapatan sa pagpapahayag at pagtitipon para iparating ang karaingan hindi pa sa rehimeng Duterte kundi sa malawak na publiko.
EILER’s Labor Day Statement: Filipino workers suffer the most but struggle the hardest amid the pandemic and economic crisis
We celebrate Labor Day during very trying times. The working class continue to suffer the brunt of the deteriorating health system, and economic crisis due to years of neoliberal impositions further worsened by the pandemic.
One of the most vulnerable sectors to COVID-19 is the working class. The regions with the most concentration of workers are reported to have the highest rate of infection. Workers are forced to go to work without mass testing, effective contact-tracing, and the absence of vaccination.
A year into the pandemic, Philippine economy has not recovered. Yet, despite a -9.6%, GDP growth, workers are still able to create P17.9 trillion in GDP.
Ang pandaigdigang araw ng mga manggagawa ay mahigpit naming niyayakap bilang mga araw din ng mahigit sa 90% mananakay ng motorsiklo.
Kami ay mga manggagawa din!
Bahagi kami ng mahigit apat na milyong walang trabaho o natanggal sa trabaho dahil sa pandemya. Bahagi rin kami ng mahigit anim na milyon na walang maayos o permanenteng mapapasukang trabaho. Katulad ng mga manggagawa at mga maralita, pumipila din kami para makakuha ng kakarampot na ayuda at pumipila din kami sa mga community pantries upang kahit paano ay may maipakain sa aming pamilya.
Katulad nila umasa din kami na mawawala na ang endo endo sa ilalim ng administrasyong ito, dahil karamihan din sa amin ay mga kontraktwal. Kaso binola lang pala tayo ng palpak na presidenteng ito at vineto niya ang batas na magwawakas sana sa endo.
The Scourge of Covid-19 and Malaria Rages On Fr. Shay Cullen
The horrific scenes in Brazil and India show people dying in the streets from the lack of preparation by government for the protection of its citizens against the surge of Covid-19. They failed to impose control of mass gatherings and election rallies and now they reap the tragic results- a massive wave of infections. In India, 314,835 infections were recorded and as many 3,000 died in one day and every day. It still rages on.
The government has failed to provide oxygen to the hospitals and see that there are enough beds in response to a catastrophic calamity. Television shows people dying at the gates of the hospitals. The hospital wards are crowded with relatives, for sure they will be infected and many will soon follow their relatives to the grave. There is no way to save them with the lack of medicines and oxygen. The vicious virus attacks the lungs and racks the body with fever. It is a terrible disease and hundreds of thousands are dying around the world.
A broad coalition of solidarity groups and non-Moro Indigenous Peoples (NMIPs) advocating for the full-inclusion of NMIP rights in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) has expressed its opposition to the extension of
Bangsamoro Transition process.
The Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL) provided for a three-year transition process from 2019-2022, after which the first regular election for the Bangsamoro Government under this Organic Law shall be held and synchronized with the 2022 national elections. There are proposals however in both Houses of Congress calling to postpone the conduct of the BARMM elections.
“The extension could have ramifications for the more than 127,000 Non-Moro Indigenous Peoples (NMIPs), living in 208,258 hectares of ancestral domains that overlap with the Bangsamoro territory given the number of killings and massive displacement from their ancestral lands since the start of the implementation of the Bangsamoro Organic Law,” LOYUKAN said in their statement.
Registrations are still open for the WE THE FUTURE PH: National Youth Assembly. Take part in this momentous gathering of young people advocating for human rights, freedom, and democracy happening on May 9, Sunday, 3:00 PM to 6:00 PM via Zoom.
As the one-year countdown before the 2022 National Elections begins, now more than ever, we, the Filipino youth, must come together to respond to the challenges of our times and to reimagine and wield a better future for our nation. In solidarity with our fellow youth from different parts of the country, let us develop a Youth Agenda for Rights-Based Democratic Governance at the local and national levels and take part in crafting strategic actions and campaigns that will create meaningful change in our communities and society.
EcoWaste Coalition Fights for Waste Workers’ Occupational Safety and Health as COVID-19 Cases Breach One Million Mark
As COVID-19 cases in the country breached the one million mark, a waste and pollution watchdog group called attention to the necessity of segregating waste at source to promote and protect the occupational safety and health of waste workers.
In a statement issued on the eve of the World Day for Safety and Health at Work on April 28, the EcoWaste Coalition emphasized the need to separate COVID-19 waste and other pathogenic waste from recyclable and compostable materials to keep waste workers, especially the informal recyclers, safe from harm caused by exposure to the novel coronavirus and other pathogens.
“We reiterate our plea to all waste generators to separate discarded materials at the point of generation to keep our environmental frontliners such as the waste workers safe from COVID-19 and other diseases,” stated Jove Benosa, Zero Waste Campaigner, EcoWaste Coalition.
Isang mainit na pagbati. Marahil hanggang ngayon ay binabagabag ka ng iyong loob at labis na nalulumbay gawa ng insidenteng naganap nitong nakaraang pagtatayo mo ng community pantry upang isabay sa pagdiriwang ng iyong kaarawan.
Ayoko nang ulitin pa ang detalye ng nakalulungkot na nangyari, sapagkat batid na naman ito ng lahat at nakadalawang beses ka nang humingi ng patawad at ng patuloy na pang-unawa. Hindi mo alam, ngunit, labis-labis mo akong pinahanga sa iyong pagpapakumbaba at pag-ako sa responsibilidad, kahit pa nga, sa aking tingin ay wala ka namang sagutin ukol doon.
Ipinakita din ng iyong akto kung paano ka wastong pinalaki ng iyong mga magulang. Napakatatag at lalim ng konsepto mo, kapatid ng responsibilidad, tungkulin at pananagutan. Mga katangian, nakalulungkot na hindi mo makita ni madama sa mga walang silbi at walang kuwentang kinatawan daw at trapo ng ating bansa.
Lifting ban on new mining projects: another incompetent COVID-19 response from the government
Executive Order 130 only serves the business interests of few, not the Filipino people
Quezon City — Alyansa Tigil Mina (ATM) partners and members were devastated by the issuance of Executive Order (EO) 130 lifting the ban on new mining projects. The group stated in a press conference that the order is another incompetent COVID-19 response from the Duterte administration only serving the business interests of few in power, not the Filipino people.
One week before Earth Day, President Duterte issued EO130 citing the “significant economic benefits” of opening the country to new mining agreements. The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) identified mining and river dredging as primary economic drivers of post-pandemic recovery.
New synergies to reduce torture and ill-treatment in police custody in South East Asia
The Association for Prevention of Torture (APT), Suara Rakyat Malaysia (SUARAM) in Malaysia, Task Force Detainees of the Philippines (TFDP) and Cross Cultural Foundation (CrCF) in Thailand are launching a three and a half year cooperation, to foster national and regional synergies to prevent incommunicado detention and forced confession in the three countries. The European Union supports this cooperation.
Torture and ill-treatment are more likely to happen in the first hours of detention. This was confirmed by the independent research commissioned by the APT, “Does Torture Prevention Work”, published in 2016. Forced confession and incommunicado detention have been prevalent in Thailand, Malaysia and the Philippines, for many years. According to thematic reports issued by SUARAM, TFDP and CrCF, these illegal practices continue due to several enabling factors: the gap between existing laws and practice; the on-going trends and culture in policing; and the persuasive narrative that supports these practices in the name of public security and safety.
The Philippines’ COVID-19 Response: Securitising the Pandemic and Disciplining the Pasaway by Karl Hapal
It was the third week of April 2020, five weeks since Metro Manila and other provinces were put under “enhanced community quarantine” (ECQ). Under ECQ, school and university classes were suspended, mass gatherings were prohibited, government offices were run with a skeletal workforce, businesses were closed except for those providing essential goods and services, mass transportation was restricted, and people were ordered to observe social distancing measures and to stay at home. At that time, the Philippines had 6,456 coronavirus disease (COVID-19) confirmed cases, 426 deaths, and 612 recoveries. Quarantine rules specified that only one person was authorized to go out and buy essential goods for the rest of their family. As the designated “authorized person outside of residence” (APOR), I was given a “quarantine pass,” a document issued by the barangay. With my quarantine pass securely kept in my bag, I went out to buy food and medicine in a nearby market. Without any public transportation, I walked for nearly thirty minutes to get to the market. The street leading to the market was relatively empty. Apart from people who were, like me, walking towards the market, very few vehicles plied the road. Occasionally, an ambulance would pass by as well as illegal motorcycle taxis. As I neared the market, I saw slow-moving vehicles occupying the street. It was as if I had gone back to the “old normal.” Soon I saw police vehicles. I also saw several buses where people were being loaded. I thought the buses were there to transport frontline workers. I was later told that the buses were there to transport people apprehended for violating quarantine guidelines. My brief encounter with the government’s campaign to apprehend violators of quarantine guidelines is hardly an aberration. Elsewhere in the greater Metro Manila area, the joint forces of the police and the military cracked down on erring individuals.
LAWYERS URGE THE SUPREME COURT FOR REFORMS IN THE ISSUANCE OF SEARCH WARRANTS: Express concern over the use of court processes as cover to attack activists and dissenters 22 March 2021
More than a hundred lawyers, law deans and legal luminaries today formally urged the Supreme Court, through a letter, to institute reforms in the issuance of search warrants, concerned that court processes have possibly been resorted to as false legal cover to attack activists and dissenters.
The letter, prompted by the number of deaths and arrests in the course of the implementation of search warrants, include, among others, the following proposals:
Emerging stronger: New NUJP leaders call on fellow journalists to unite, resist attacks March 22, 2021
The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) has weathered a storm alongside colleagues in the profession but we still face rough seas ahead, if not rougher.
The systematic red-tagging of the NUJP, media outlets, and journalists has intensified in the past five years, endangering the lives of members of the press toiling hard to keep the people informed. Aside from being branded as enemies of the state, journalists have reported receiving threats telling them to stop being critical of government or be silenced.
This amid other attacks on press freedom including threats of closure and other forms of harassment that our colleagues from Rappler, ABS-CBN, and alternative media outfits have faced under the Duterte administration.
CHR pushes for passage of bill protecting human-rights workers
The Commission on Human Rights (CHR) has called for the passage of a bill that seeks to protect human-rights workers in view of recent attacks on activists and members of progressive organizations.
According to CHR, House Bill No. 9199 or the Human Rights Defenders (HRD) Protection Bill should be considered a high-priority legislation especially in light of various reports that rights workers and other activists are either being harassed or targeted.