Despite harassments and murders against their ranks, the farmers of Hacienda Luisita till the soil and raise their crops as part of their struggle to reclaim the land that has been decided to be theirs all along. Read more
PEASANT organizations including the Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP), Unyon ng Manggagawasa Agrikultura (UMA), and the Alyansa ng Magbubukid sa Luisita (AMBALA) held a cultural caravan around Central Luzon last November 14 as part of their commemoration of the 12th anniversary of the Hacienda Luisita Massacre.
The groups held programs in front of the Department of Agrarian Reform office in Quezon City, as well as in the cities of Balagtas and Malolos in Bulacan, San Fernando and Angeles in Pampanga and Tarlac where they were met by supporters from other progressive groups.
The speakers in the various stops said it is important to remember the massacre as part of their struggles for genuine land reform, justice for victims of human rights violations, the eviction of the military from their communities, and just and lasting peace.
Twelve years ago
On November 15, 2004, a protest by farmers working in Hacienda Luisita was violently dispersed by elements of the Philippine National Police (PNP) and Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) dispatched by then labor secretary Patricia Santo Tomas.
The peasants were calling for just wages, increased benefits and the immediate distribution of the vast sugar estate by the controlling Cojuangco clan of Tarlac.
Seven protesters were killed while other members and supporters were killed including former Iglesia Filipina Independiente Obispo Maximo Alberto Ramento.
Others also became victims of enforced disappearances and illegal arrests.
The struggle continues
In a press statement, UMA secretary-general Danilo Ramos said there has been no justice for those killed and wounded in the Luisita massacre and in the subsequent incidents of extrajudicial killings and enforced disappearances after the massacre.
Ramos also condemned the lack of action against the perpetrators.
“Some of the massacre perpetrators were even promoted and held the highest positions in government,” he said, speaking of Gen. Gregorio Catapang and Gen. Ricardo Visaya, both of whom became AFP chiefs, and former president Benigno Aquino III, whose clan controls Luisita to this day.
Ramos also said that genuine land reform has yet to be felt by the farmers of Hacienda Luisita, given how the Cojuanco Aquino clan continues to harass and forcibly deny the land from the peasants.
In April 2012, the Supreme Court said the farmers are the genuine owners of Hacienda Luisita and ordered an immediate distribution of the estate.
“Farmers are still clamoring for land, justice and peace. These can only be achieved in Hacienda Luisita and the rest of the country after genuine land reform and social justice are realized,” Ramos said. (Abril Layad B. Ayroso)
The militant peasant group Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas held a 3 day vigil in front of the House of Representativesa from June 8 to June 10, to condemn the so-called economic Charter Change. They said that the economic Cha-cha was being pushed by the Aquino administration-controlled Congress is only for the benefit of the hacienderos like President Aquino whose family still controls the sprawling Hacienda Luisita sugar estate in Tarlac.
The KMP also said that “economic Charter Change will intensify land-grabbing in the countryside and worsen the export-oriented and import dependent orientation of the economy. Local production that is dependent on imported inputs will be directed to serving the needs of globalization.”
House of Representatives, Quezon City
June 9-10, 2015
2014 IBON Yearend Birdtalk
Political and Economic Briefing
UP College of Education, Diliman
January 23, 2015
More news at www.ibon.org
Peasants held an indignation rally at Mendiola to commemorate the massacre that killed 13 and injured many others on January 22, 1987.
In this video, peasant leader and massacre survivor Rafael Mariano recalls how the massacre happened.
It is notable that Corazon Aquino, the late mother of President Benigno Aquino III, was the head of state during the incident. Many participants and survivors of the massacre were peasants calling for the distribution of the Cojuanco-Aquino controlled Hacienda Luisita.
Panayam ng Kodao kay Prop. Jose Maria Sison
January 20, 2014
TANONG: Ano po ang inyong mensahe sa patuloy na paggunita ng mga magsasaka at iba pang sektor sa Mendiola masaker ng dekada 80? May kabuluhan pa ba ito sa panahon ngayon?
JMS: Makabuluhan ang patuloy na paggunita ng mga mga magsasaka at iba pang sektor ng sambayanang Pilipino sa Mendiola masaker ng 1987. Ang masaker sa Mendiola at sa Hacienda Luisita ay mga karumal-dumal na krimen ng mga asenderong nasa kapangyarihan. Dapat itulak ang tunay na reporma sa lupa bilang daan sa pagkakamit ng hustisya sosyal, demokrasya at pag-unlad ng ekonomiya kaakibat ng pambansang industriyalisasyon. Dapat walang humpay ang kilusang magbubukid at sambayanang Pilipino sa pagdemanda ng tunay na reporma sa lupa.
On the last day of Pope Francis’ pastoral visit to the Philippines people’s organizations joined millions of Filipinos at the University of Santo Tomas and Rizal Park to ask for his continued solidarity in their fight for social justice. The organizations expressed joy at the Pontiff’s stand against corruption and “glaring…scandalous social inequality,” as well as justice for the poor.
Workers, peasants, women, urban poor, indigenous peoples, migrant Filipinos, transport workers, and many others marched from Liwasang Bonifacio to Rizal Park with images of saints, displayed placards and distributed leaflets to highlight what they believe are the Pope’s pro-people messages.
January 18, 2015
Solidarity Night: Hacienda Luisita masaker, 10 taong walang hustisya
(2004-2014) November 15, 2014
Ang lahat ng larawan sa video ay kuha mula sa pagkilos ng mga mamamayan noong bisperas ng ika-10 taong anibersaryo ng pamamaril at masaker sa mga magbubukid at manggagawa ng Hacienda Luisita. Pampanga at Tarlac, November 15, 2014.
Ang “Lupa” ay orihinal na awit mula sa grupong The Jerks.