As a multimedia group, Kodao publishes news stories, opinion essays, cartoons, photos and others here.

NUJP slams Army unit, LGU

The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) condemned a military unit that tried to prevent Davao City-based journalists from covering the evacuation of about 2,000 Lumad evacuees in Lianga, Surigao del Sur Monday, July 16.

In a statement issued Tuesday, the NUJP said it strongly condemns the 4th Civic Military Operation (4th CMO) Battalion of the Eastern Mindanao Command of the Armed Forces of the Philippines that stopped the vehicle carrying five journalists from the Philippine Daily Inquirer, Radyo ni Juan Network, Kilab Multimedia, The Breakaway Media and Davao Today at about 11 o’clock Monday at Kilometer 3, Sitio Neptune in Diatagon, Lianga.

A Major Jerson Igloria, battalion ground commander manning the checkpoint, told the reporters not to proceed to where the evacuees were gathered and was heard asking, “Sino yang nasa loob ng sasakyan? Mga illegal yan? ‘Di lumabas.” (Who are those inside the vehicles? Are they illegal? Why are they not alighting?)

Inquirer correspondent Barry Dacanay then alighted and tried to go near the approaching evacuees but was stopped by Igloria who told him, Sir, doon ka lang. Respetohay lang ta.” (Sir, just stay away. Let us respect each other.)

The Army officer then ordered the journalists to first secure a permit from the Lianga Municipal Social Welfare and Development (MSWD) Office before they would be allowed to cover the evacuation.

“Hintayin niyo yung MSWD kung papayagan kayo,” Maj. Igloria told them, claiming the place was an “ambush area” and therefore dangerous. (Just wait for the MSWD if it would allow you.)

A 4th CMO trooper interrogates a journalist at a checkpoint in Lianga, Surigao del Sur. (The Breakaway Media photo)

The journalists sought permission from the Lianga MSWD but were refused without explanation.

Asked later by local reporters about their refusal, Lianga MSWD officer Melita Encenzo denied forbidding the Davao journalists from proceeding to where the evacuees were.

“They just need to seek permission from the MSWDO or the barangays officials, just so we know who visits our area of responbility,” Encenzo reportedly said.

The journalists nevertheless managed to take photos and videos as well as conduct interviews when the evacuees reached the national highway.

The NUJP however said that both the military and the MSWD had no right in trying to prevent the Davao journalists from covering the Lumad evacuation.

“We stress that, in the absence of clear and present danger, neither the Army, MSWD, or any government agency has the authority to prevent any Filipino citizen from enjoying the freedom to travel and, in this case, stop journalists from covering what is clearly an event of utmost public interest and concern,” NUJP said.

The group said that even if it was dangerous, it is precisely the military’s mandate to protect civilians such as the journalists and the evacuees they were covering.

It also scored the MSWD for trying to prevent coverage of the evacuees’ plight and depriving them of assistance by withholding information that could help solicit more aid for the Lumad.

“Martial law [in Mindanao] does not justify the arbitrary restriction on coverage of the Lumad evacuation, unless, of course, we have ceased to be a democracy. What happened was a clearly unconstitutional violation of press freedom and, more importantly, of the people’s right to know,” the NUJP said. # (Raymund B. Villanueva)

Military encampment forces Manobos to evacuate anew

Evacuees were confronted by the 74th Infantry Battalion of the Philippine Army.

Military operations by the 75th Infantry Battalion of the Philippine Army drove more than a thousand Manobo Lumad to evacuate anew in Surigao del Sur Province Monday, July 16.

At least 1,607 Manobos from 11 communities of Barangay Diatagon, Lianga town and three communities from Barangay Buhisan, San Agustin town were forced to evacuate due to the encampment of the 75th IBPA in their communities since June 14, 2018, the Save Our Schools (SOS) Network said in an alert.

Alternative multimedia group The Breakaway Media also reported that the evacuees started their march from their communities at six o’clock in the morning and arrived at Barangay Diatogon’s Gymnasium at two o’clock in the afternoon.

A military checkpoint tried to prevent the evacuees from reaching the national highway as well as media workers from covering the evacuation, SOS said.

More than 1,600 Manobo evacuees fill the road to Barangay Diatagon Monday. (SOS Network photo)

In their fourth forced evacuation under the Rodrigo Duterte government, the Manobos complain of human rights abuses by the military, including sexual harassment of women and teenagers.

Lianga Manobos have also evacuated in July and November last year and January this year due to intensified military operations.

The Lumad also complain of forced recruitment of Manobo men to the military’s Civilian Auxiliary Geographical Unit as well as threats, harassments, and intimidation of Lumad school students in Sitio Simowao in Barangay Diatogon.

Among the evacuees are 568 learners of the Tribal Filipino Program in Surigao del Sur and Alternative Learning Center for Agricultural and Livelihood Development, award-winning alternative schools for the indigenous Lumad.

The Save Our Schools Network also said the military threatened to file criminal charges against the Lumad leaders if they pushed through with their evacuation.

The Lumad said heavy military presence at the Andap Valley complex is to pave the way for the extraction of coal from their ancestral domain by mining giants Benguet Corp., Great Wall Mining and Abacus Coal.

Andap Valley is said to hold the biggest bulk of coal reserves in the country.

The Eastern Mindanao Command of the Armed Forces of the Philippines has yet to issue a statement on the incident. # (Raymund B. Villanueva)

More than 1,600 Manobo evacuees fill the road to Barangay Diatagon Monday. (The Breakaway Media photo)

More revolutionary groups reject ‘localized talks’

More local revolutionary groups reject the government’s localized peace talks scheme, further accusing President Rodrigo Duterte of insincerity in negotiating to resolve the civil war raging in the country.

The National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) in Duterte’s home region of Southern Mindanao said it too rejects the President’s localized peace talks plans as “nothing but a hollow attempt to draw a veil over the ravages of Martial Law in Mindanao and the escalating bloodbath of Oplan Kapayapaan affecting millions of civilians in the country.”

“The idea of peace negotiations that are ‘nationally orchestrated, centrally directed and locally supervised and implemented’ is but a smokescreen to obscure the fact that Duterte has never been serious in addressing the root causes of the Filipino people’s armed resistance and is only predisposed in the complete capitulation of the revolutionary movement,” NDFP-Southern Mindanao Region in a statement Sunday said.

In Southern Mindanao, particularly in Duterte’s home town of Davao City, New People’s Army (NPA) forces have declined all “invitations” for localized peace talks, NDFP-SMR said.

Similar offers made by Davao City mayor and presidential daughter Sara Duterte have also been declined by the NPA who told the local executive to better direct her “gestures” at supporting the GRP (Government of the Republic of the Philippines)-NDFP negotiations instead.

“All Red commanders and fighters of all units of the New People’s Army in the country are behind their national leadership in supporting the negotiations between the GRP and the NDFP panels in a foreign venue,” NDFP-SMR said.

The NPA’s Venerando Villacillo Command (NPA-VCC) in Nueva Vizcaya and Quirino provinces also said over the weekend that localized peace talks will not resolve the root of the armed conflict.

“Only the 5th Infantry Division [of the Philippine Army], armed state forces, intelligence units, local elite and foreign imperialist capitalists would benefit from localized peace talks,” NPA-VCC said, adding it was Duterte who ended the negotiations through his Presidential Proclamation No. 360 in November 23 last year.

The 5th ID based in Gamu, Isabela province is the lead AFP unit operating in most parts of Northern Luzon.

‘Surrender package’

Rubi del Mundo, NDFP-SMR spokesperson, said the proposed localized peace talk is nothing but a “surrender package” that revolutionary groups reject.

“Despite the overwhelming support for resuming the peace negotiations between the two panels, it is evident that Duterte is adamant in making a circus, a pointless and an expensive one, at the cost of taxpayers’ money and at the behest of his blood-hungry advisers in the US-controlled AFP and the Department of National Defense,” del Mundo said.

Del Mundo added that Duterte also intends to isolate the many local and national politicians who are supportive of the NDFP-GRP negotiations and paint them as anti-peace or communist sympathizers. # (Raymund B. Villanueva)

Charter change is Digong’s response to discontent – Ibon exec

By April Burcer

The proposed constitution creating a federal Philippine government is President Rodrigo Duterte’s response to a growing discontent against his government, Ibon Executive Director Jose Enrique Africa said in a forum at UP Diliman Thursday afternoon.

“There is a limit to flattery, to disrespect, to insults, to bullying and to terrorizing. It underscores what this charter change is all about. It becomes important for Duterte to push the charter change because of this sort of discontent,” Africa said.

Africa explained that the more disgruntled and dissatisfied the people are, the more Pres. Duterte needs a new Constitution to create the illusion of change.

Contributory to growing discontent against the Duterte government is the lack of genuine economic growth, Rosario Bella Guzman, another IBON executive, said during the think tank’s Midyear 2018 “Birdtalk”.

“[The government says] we have the highest growth rate in Asia, with 6.8 percent. The truth behind that highest growth rate [however] is joblessness, poor quality of work, very low wages and 5,460 Filipinos leaving the country everyday to look for work,” Guzman said.

“Imagine this scenario, and then you slap the TRAIN Law, so now we also have the highest inflation rate,” she added.

Cha-cha’s major flaws

Africa said Duterte’s charter change and drive for federalism have three major flaws.

The first flaw, he said, is the concept of an ‘imperial Manila’ where so-called wealth distribution would emanate from.

“What resources are they going to redistribute from imperial Manila? Are we that rich? No. There are a lot of poor people in Manila,” Africa said.

The second flaw, he said is the need for a new Constitution to redistribute resources.

“Even [former chief justice Ma. Lourdes] Sereno said there are enough laws in place and legal bases to distribute resources, authority and responsibility to the regions,” Africa added.

The third flaw is the government’s refusal to change its anti-poor policies, according to Africa.

“Our policies are pro-elite and anti-people. It’s not about imperial manila versus the poor regions. The main contradiction is the elite vs the poor Filipino,” he explained.

In the end, the government’s charter change is not about federalism, national development and for redistributing resources to the poor regions, Africa said.

“Federalism is about political self interest,” he said. #

#BabaeAko to hold AMaSONA protest on July 23

By April Burcer

The #BabaeAko campaign announced a protest march on July 23 dubbed AMaSONA (Anti-Misogyny Activists sa SONA) to declare their stand against sexism, misogyny and other acts of injustices.

The announcement was made by a panel composed of Jean Enriquez of World March of Women, actor Mae Paner, Norma Dollaga of Association of Women in Theology, Gert Libang of Gabriela and Anelle Sabanal of Christians for Life and Dignity at a press conference in Bantayog ng mga Bayani Friday morning.

The panel shared women’s issues including the effect of the government’s cancellation of the peace talks with the National Democratic Front of the Philippines on women, prostitution, attacks and harassment on activist women, price increases and the suffering of women the ongoing extra-judicial killings.

The #BabaeAko movement, which started as a social media campaign to denounce attacks and abuses against women they said are led by President Rodrigo Duterte himself.

The campaign launched in May has since grown to become one of the most influential people on the internet according to a recent Time Magazine article.

Senator Leila de Lima, jailed by the Duterte government in what many say is an act of vengeance, expressed her support to the movement.

“To my fellow #AMaSONA, as women and leaders, we have a lot on our plate –not just in the fight against misogyny, but also in addressing other issues of today,” de Lima said in a statement read at the forum.

“I am calling not only on the women but also to the Filipino people who value our freedom and democracy to stand against these attacks and to help our fellow citizens who were tricked into believing Duterte’s lies,” her message read.

The AMaSONA march will join the United People’s SONA on the day of President Duterte’s third State of the Nation Address. #

CPP says no to ‘pretend talks’ with LGUs

The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) slammed Malacañan’s announcement of an executive order for localized peace negotiations, calling the scheme “pretend talks.”

After local National Democratic Front formations have rejected peace negotiations with local government officials, the CPP itself strongly spurned the offer, saying President Duterte will only use these to “pretend to want peace while actually waging total war against the people.”

Malacañang yesterday announced it will soon issue an executive order to pursue “localized peace talks” istead of formal negotiations between the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP) and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) abroad.

“So-called localized peace talks are a sham, a waste of people’s money, and are doomed to fail. It is a worn-out psywar tactic to project victory to conceal the continuing failure of the AFP to suppress the people’s resistance and stem the steady growth of the NPA (New People’s Army),” the CPP said.

“The civil war will continue to rage despite local peace talks,” the group added.

Earlier, NDF-Panay and the Cordillera People’s Democratic Front issued statements rejecting localized peace talks between local revolutionary groups and the GRP.

Duterte’s “localized peace talks” dovetail with such corruption-riddled programs as the “balik-baril program,” the Comprehensive Local Integration Program and the recent surrender campaign, the CPP pointed out.

“Only local government officials and military field officers are happy with the ‘localized peace talks’, a money-making racket with hundreds of million of funds that will surely end up in their pockets,” the CPP in a statement Friday (June 13) said.

The underground party accused AFP field officers of being overzealous in their effort to conjure the illusion of “mass surrenderees” where hundreds of local residents are being rounded up in AFP-occupied villages and later misrepresented before the public as “surrenderees”.

“They have overdone their surrender campaign as they have declared close to 8,000 surrendered since January, after having claimed earlier this year that there are only 3,000 NPA members,” the CPP said.

The group added AFP’s are being funded directly by Malacañan.

“The Party declares that the [NPA] and all revolutionary forces are united under the Party’s central leadership and unequivocably support the Negotiating Panel of the NDFP in its representation of all revolutionary forces in negotiations with the GRP,” it said.

“Surely, this pretend ‘localized’ peace talks will not involve even a single genuine revolutionary force. Duterte will certainly be negotiating only with its own shadow,” the CPP said. # (Raymund B. Villanueva)

Revolutionary groups reject ‘local peace talks’ scheme

The Rodrigo Duterte government will only find empty chairs across the negotiating table when it tries to hold so-called localized peace talks.

The National Democratic Front-Panay (NDF-Panay) and the Cordillera People’s Democratic Front (CPDF) said they are rejecting government’s latest scheme.

“NDF-Panay and all revolutionary forces in the region totally reject any call for local peace talks with the local bureaucracy or any other entity blessed by the anti-peace liar and chief fascist representative of the ruling class in the country (Duterte),” Concha Araneta, NDF-Panay spokesperson, in a July 7 statement said.

Araneta said that not one region has been enticed and fooled by any reactionary regime to face the GRP (Government of the Republic of the Philippines) in the regional, provincial, city or municipal level in order to negotiate a comprehensive solution to the armed conflict.

“Time and again, this divisive scheme has been rejected by the NDFP (National Democratic Front of the Philippines) and all NDFP forces and structures in the regions and provinces of the Philippines,” Araneta said.

Simon Naogsan, CPDF spokesperson, has also said their forces will not participate in any local peace talks with the government.

“Among us (Cordillerans), national oppression is perpetrated by the reactionary state ruled by big landlords, comprador bourgeoisie and US imperialism” Naogsan told The Philippine Star.

“We cannot expect these problems to be answered by local governments,” Naogsan explained, adding they will only support national peace negotiations.

Duterte order

Meanwhile, presidential spokesperson Harry Roque in a press briefing Thursday (July 12) said the government will allow local government officials to conduct peace talks with communist revolutionaries in their respective areas.

Roque said Duterte made the decision after meeting his Cabinet security, peace, and justice clusters as well as lawmakers and local government officials last July 11.

Roque said the guiding framework for localized peace talks will include the following:

* It will be nationally orchestrated, centrally directed and locally supervised and implemented.

* The constitutional integrity and sovereignty will not be compromised.

* Complete and genuine resolution of the local armed conflict; it shall cover the NPAs, organs of political power and Militia ng Bayan.

* If there is a ceasefire, the constitutional mandate of the state to protect public safety, civilian welfare, critical infrastructure and private properties and the guarantee of rule of law and order will not be compromised at all times.

* Government goodwill, full amnesty package based on disarmament, demobilization, rehabilitation and reintegration to the mainstream of society.

* The necessary enabling environment set by the President for the formal local talks to proceed are local venue, no coalition government or power-sharing, no revolutionary taxes, extortion, arson and violent activities and the fighters to remain in their pre-designated encampment areas.

* The substantive agenda will be based on the Medium Term Philippine Development Plan and Philippine Development Program 2040.

Roque also said that peace and livelihood packages may be offered to NPA surrenderers.

Really crazy

NDFP chief political consultant Jose Maria Sison dismissed Malacañan’s localized peace talks announcement.

“Duterte is really crazy. He wants to negotiate with his own shadow,” Sison said, adding so-called localized peace talks are an old discredited psychological warfare tactic.

Sison said that like reported fake surrender ceremonies using civilians and recycled surrenderers held by the military, local peace and order councils are money-making schemes for local politicians.

“This is a stupid waste of public money. It is a kind of racket, with the local political followers and military agents of Duterte pocketing the money for the fake surrenders [and localized peace talks],” Sison said. # (Raymund B. Villanueva)

Oris: Many surrenderees AFP’s own

The New People’s Army (NPA) hit at the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) for parading “thousands of fake surrenderees” nationwide.

In a video message, NPA National Operations Command spokesperson Jorge Madlos said many of those paraded by the AFP before President Rodrigo Duterte are in fact members of their own paramilitary forces or innocent civilians who were forced by the military to pose as surrenderees.

“When we checked, the (AFP) list includes 36 Lumad paramilitaries from Lianga (Surigao del Sur) who are also on the list of those who massacred three fellow Lumads in September 1 (2015),” Madlos said.

Madlos added that the 36 paramilitary troopers are being led by Calpet Egua who is reported to have been trained, armed, supported and protected by the Philippine Army.

“The AFP uses this paramilitary group as fake NPA surrenderees to clear their names as having been involved in the massacre,” Madlos said.

Madlos, also known by his nom de guerre as Ka Oris, said it adds insult to injury that the so-called surrenderees were given houses and lots as well as pocket money by Duterte in a ceremony in Malacañan Palace.

Madlos said that the AFP also picked up civilians who were later presented as surrenderees as well as those who have long left the NPA and have already been living as ordinary farmers.

“They were again picked up and recycled as new surrenderees,” Madlos said.

“Although, in fact, there were real surrenderees, such as the alleged National Democratic Front of the Philippines-Far South Mindanao spokesperson,” he added, referring to Nilo Legaspi and his wife who surrendered last January.

Madlos said real surrenderees are very few and were only mixed with thousands of fake surrenderees.

The five or ten surrenderees does not make for a mass surrender of NPA forces, Madlos said.

Both Duterte and the AFP have repeatedly said the NPA is down to a few thousands of fighters left.

Far from being defeated

In January, former AFP chief of staff Rey Guerrero said the military is committed to weaken by 50 percent the NPA, which he said has only about 3,700 fighters nationwide.

In its presentation of hundreds of surrenderees to Duterte, the AFP said the so-called surrenderees were part of 4,000 who recently abandoned armed struggle.

“These are indicators of growing discontent within their organizations, the success of our programs, and the cooperation between residents and local government units,” AFP spokesperson Col. Edgard Arevalo said in a press conference last January.

Netizens, however, pointed out that the Duterte government in fact presented 300 more so-called surrendered members than the AFP’s claim of NPA’s 3,700 fighters.

The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) said in their 49th anniversary statement last March that the NPA has more than a hundred guerilla fronts with at least company sized formations in addition as many People’s Militia units all over the country.

The CPP also said that Duterte and the AFP are wasting public funds on fake surrenderees.

“Over the past few months, Duterte himself and the entire military and defence establishment have spent hundreds of millions of pesos to stage Malacañang dinners with the president, tours around Luneta and other cheap gimmickry. The bigger portion of the monies, of course, line the pockets of armed forces field officials,” the CPP said in a statement last March.

“If we are to believe claims made by officials of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) at the end of 2017 that the NPA is down to 3,700 members, then by simple subtraction, one can conclude that the AFP under Duterte has already accomplished what the previous regimes have failed to do: defeat the NPA,” it added.

In a separate announcement, CPP founder Jose Ma. Sison said the NPA is nowhere near being defeated, being present in at least 73 of the country’s 81 provinces.

Sison added that NPA presence in these provinces “denotes the existence of the people´s militia and the self-defense units of the revolutionary mass organizations. These two layers of people´s defense are the auxiliary and reserve force of the NPA.” # (Raymund B. Villanueva)

 

Human rights groups slam woman’s strip search

By April Burcer

Various human rights groups are calling for the investigation of the reported strip search of a female drug suspect in a police station in Makati City that went viral last week.

Gabriela and Karapatan released separate statements condemning the act as despicable, cruel and degrading.

“What the Makati Police did to the arrested drug suspects was despicable, including the act of doing a strip search on a woman and having her bend over in front of the male and female police officers. This is another case of abuse of police authority to trample upon the rights of the oppressed,” Gabriela said.

Karapatan also said that the superiors of those involved “should be investigated as well to look into their accountability, considering the principle of command responsibility under the said law.”

Both groups are calling for the investigation of the incident and to hold the involved police officers accountable, and should be meted out with punishment under the Anti-Torture Law.

Makati City police chief Rogelio Simon, however, claimed that the video was just a demo and that the drug suspect involved consented to the procedure because of monetary benefits.

The Commission on Human Rights also launched its own investigation of the case and categorizes this as a form of psychological torture, which is prohibited under Republic Act (RA) No. 9745 or the Anti-Torture Act signed in 2009.

Culture of torture

The incident was not an isolated case according to Karapatan as the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency in Central Visayas (PDEA-7) also conducted strip searches of drug suspects during its so-called Greyhound operations in jail facilities in the region in May 2017.

“Despite these previous incidents, the practice continues. It is lamentable and infuriating that strip search is considered as “standard operating procedure” by the Philippine National Police and the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP),” Karapatan’s statement said.

The practice should have been deemed illegal because of the Anti-Torture Law but authorities think that such acts are justifiable as long as they do it according to the guidelines and manual of operations, the group added.

Gabriela, on the other hand, blames this culture of “disrespect  and disregard of women’s rights” on President Rodrigo Duterte, ading  “it is not surprising that the fascist and anti-women culture among the police and the military also increases. “

In fact, even with the Anti-Torture Law, Karapatan has documented 248 victims of torture under the Benigno S. Aquino III administration and 94 victims of torture within the two years of the Duterte regime.

Gabriela is also appealing to other women who were victims of police abuse to come out and reveal whatever human rights injustices they have suffered in the hands of the police and military. #

 

KMU welcomes order regularizing 80 Nutri-Asia workers

The Kilusang Mayo Uno (KMU) said the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) order to Nutri-Asia Incorporated (NAI) to regularize 80 of its workers is an initial victory of the ongoing strike at the country’s biggest condiment manufacturer.

“This is an initial victory of the workers’ strike at Nutri-Asia. The DOLE has been forced to come out with a decision to regularize 80 contractual workers because the workers are unionized and are militantly asserting their rights,” KMU chairperson Elmer Labog told Kodao.

In a July 5 announcement, the DOLE said it has ordered NAI to regularize workers contracted through Asia Pro Multi-Purpose Cooperative (AMPC) because it is engaged in an illegal labor-only contracting agreement.

In an report issued last June 24, DOLE Region 3 director Zenaida Angara-Campita said AMPC has no capacity to buy its own equipment and machines and is a mere NAI lessee.

AMPC also has no control and supervision over its contracted workers under the agreement it entered into with NAI, he agency said.

DOLE said the NAI violated Article 106 of the Labor Code that only allows labor-only contracting when the employer has insufficient capital or investment.

The agency added that the workers are directly involved in NAI’s core business and deserve to become regular workers of the company.

The order also said that the AMPC contracted workers who are assigned at NAI’s quality control and research divisions directly work for the condiment giant’s core business.

“In view of this, DOLE orders the AMPC to desist from its illegal activity and cease going into any more contracting agreement,” the agency said.

NAI manufactures ketchup, sauces and other condiments as well as cooking oil and juices that are dominant in the local market. The multi-billion peso company also exports its popular products abroad.

1.4k more contractuals

While welcome, DOLE’s order must also order the regularization of about 1,400 NAI workers more, KMU said.

The labor federation also said NAI must be punished for violating other provisions of the Labor Code such as the non-payment of the minimum wage and other labor standards as well as occupational health and safety.

“KMU salutes the workers of Nutri-Asia for their militant struggle to become regular workers, just wages, and right to unionize and launch strikes in the face of the brutal attacks by the conniving State and big capital,” the group said.

“The strike goes on! Until all the Nutri-Asia contractual workers are made regulars, until the laid off unionists are back, the strikers will only intensify their struggle,” it added.

KMU said it is calling on all fellow workers and the public to support the strike at Nutri-Asia as well as other labor strikes all over the country. # (Raymund B. Villanueva)