Latest Event Updates
Martial law scare can’t stop anti-Duterte protest, not even quake drill – fisherfolk
Manila, Philippines – While gearing to join the broad, multi-sectoral anti-Duterte protest at the Luneta Park on September 21, the activist fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) assures that the threat of President Rodrigo Duterte and Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana to declare a nationwide martial rule will not stop thousands of people who will express their outrage against the Duterte regime.
Defense Secretary Lorenzana earlier announced to impose a nationwide martial law if the said protest will turn violent.
“Who’s afraid of martial law scare? Apparently, not us but the Duterte regime and his war dogs are shivering in fear of the people’s strong condemnation against the regime’s brutal and bloody rule that imperil the peaceful lives of the ordinary people,” Fernando Hicap, PAMALAKAYA Chairperson said in a statement.
PAMALAKAYA plays down the earthquake drill which is set on the same day that the massive demonstration will be held.
“President Duterte intentionally declared September 21 as nationwide quake drill for thinking that it could disrupt our rally, but he got it all wrong. The Filipino people will literally tremble the streets through massive demonstration, so he better prepare himself for the public’s verdict against his bloody regime,” added Hicap.
The broad, multi-sectoral anti-Duterte alliance Movement Against Tyranny (MAT) will lead the protest on September 21 in time of the 45th anniversary of martial law declaration by the late-dictator Ferdinand Marcos. ###
CHR token budget sign of Duterte’s dictatorial rule – fisherfolk
Manila, Philippines – The activist fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) on Wednesday said that the approved 2018 budget for the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) is President Rodrigo Duterte exercising his authoritarian rule.
With 119-32 vote, House of Representatives on Tuesday approved a P1, 000 budget for the CHR for the year 2018. CHR has been critical against the government’s rampant human rights abuses and extra-judicial killings under Oplan Tokhang.
“It’s dictatorship in the making; President Duterte wants to totally abolish the CHR but because it needs a long-process constitutional amendment, he and his super majority in the Congress trimmed its budget to cripple its functions,”
“We are concerned with how the Duterte government treats human rights in our country. Curtailing the very function of the CHR by cutting its budget means the government shows no importance on the human rights of its people. We can see it by the numerous human rights violations committed by the state security forces with impunity,” Fernando Hicap, PAMALAKAYA Chairperson said in a statement.
The fisherfolk group said if the Congress approved only P1,000 of CHR budget for allegedly not fulfilling its duty, then the Philippine National Police (PNP) who spearheads the bloody war against drugs should also receive an insulting P1,000 on its 2018 budget for killing innocent civilians they tag as drug users and failing to serve and protect the people.
“We’re not happy with you as well” – Fisherfolk tells Duterte
Manila, Philippines – The militant fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) expresses its full support on the statement of President Rodrigo Duterte to resign as a President of the Philippines for according to him, he is not happy anymore in his position.
President Duterte during his speech at the 17th founding anniversary of Digos in Davao del Sur on Friday confessed that he is no longer happy being a President and he wants to resign.
“If he thinks that he is not happy anymore and that he’s already a detriment to the people which he actually is, then it is of our pleasure to throw support to his resignation as President of the Republic,” Fernando Hicap, PAMALAKAYA Chairperson said in a statement.
“Go outside your palace, talk to us” – Caraga farmers & fishers to Duterte
Manila, Philippines – The militant fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) on Sunday challenged President Rodrigo Duterte to face hundreds of farmers and fishers from the Caraga Region currently encamped at Mendiola, Manila since August 23 as part of their Manila Protest Camp dubbed as “Lakbayan Laban sa Kahirapan at Karahasan”.
Farmers and fishers under Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP) and PAMALAKAYA, consecutively, since the first day of their protest camp staged picket actions and dialogues with various government agencies concerning their sector.
Among the issues brought by the Caraga folks are landlessness and widespread land grabbing in the region, the illegal marine sanctuaries in Surigao del Norte which deprive fisherfolk of their right to fishing grounds, and the repressive fishing rules and regulations under the amended Fisheries Code of 1998 or Republic Act 10654.
“The fisherfolk and farmers are on their third week in Manila yet no concrete commitments have been made by the government agencies they confronted to address the issues they raised,”
“The Presidet is too occupied on his war against drugs that claims thousands of lives while setting aside the ails in the countryside,” Fernando Hicap, PAMALAKAYA National Chairperson said in a statement.
PAMALAKAYA slams Marcos-holiday declaration in Ilocos Norte
Manila, Philippines – “This is historical revisionism at its inner core!”
This was the reaction of the national fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) on Friday after President Rodrigo Roa Duterte through its Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea signed the Proclamation 310 declaring September 11 as a special non-working holiday in Ilocos Norte to mark the birth anniversary of the late-dictator Ferdinand Marcos.
The group said President Duterte is ultimately deodorizing the atrocities of the Marcos regime by first letting his remains buried at the Libingan ng mga Bayani despite strong opposition from the people and now, declaring his birth anniversary as a special non-working holiday in the province of Ilocos Norte.
“President Duterte does the usual whitewashing of the heinous crimes committed by the late-dictator against the Filipino people. He wants us to bury the thousands of martial law victims together with the billions of plundered wealth in oblivion,”
“If President Duterte thinks the Filipino people could totally forget the dark days of martial rule under the late-dictator Ferdinand Marcos, then he got it all wrong. We will never forget; it is not only the North but the whole archipelago always remember how the Marcoses took advantage of their power for two decades at the expense of the Filipino people’s civil rights,” Fernando Hicap, PAMALAKAYA Chairperson said in a statement.
The group suggested that since Duterte is the only one who wants to celebrate the birth anniversary of Ferdinand Marcos, the non-working holiday declaration must only apply to the Malacanang Palace and not to impose his blind-servitude to Marcoses to the people of Ilocos Norte.
“President Duterte uses his position to venerate the Marcoses even if the people are in extreme fury against them. The President must celebrate the birth anniversary of his idol all by himself together with the Marcoses because chances are, not every Ilocano wants to be part of that illusory feast,” ended Hicap. ###
Fisherfolk asks probe into marine sanctuaries in Surigao del Norte
Manila, Philippines – Fisherfolk under the group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) on Thursday urged the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Secretary Roy Cimatu to investigate the existing marine sanctuaries illegally operating in the province of Surigao del Norte that covers more than 600 hectares of its fishing waters.
Marine sanctuary in the municipality of General Luna covers 580 hectares in spite that the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) only approved 200 hectares of sanctuary in the town. While in the municipality of San Isidro, there is an existing 33 hectares of marine sanctuary and another 30 hectares for expansion will be opened soon.
Marine Sanctuaries are designated areas declared by the BFAR where all types of fishing activities are prohibited in order to preserve marine species and give fish time to spawn. However, according to PAMALAKAYA, marine sanctuaries often lead to privatization and conversion of fishing waters into eco-tourism zones
The declared marine sanctuaries in Surigao del Norte now showcase leisure activities like boat riding, surfing, scuba diving, and sport fishing for local and foreign tourists.
“While we are being denied access from our traditional fishing zone, the local government unit opens the area to rest and recreation hub for tourists. This is the reason why we don’t buy the idea that marine sanctuaries are for the interest of small fisherfolk, because we know that the real score behind this sanctuaries is to transform the traditional use of fishing waters into money-making business both of the local government and investors,” Leopoldo Pelinta, PAMALAKAYA-Surigao del Norte Spokesperson said in a statement.
The group also contests the claim of BFAR that marine sanctuaries is for marine life protection, saying the bureau’s designated sea patrols or bantay dagat prohibit only small fishermen while inutile to destructive large-scale commercial fishing vessels. Ring net and Superlight fishing are prevalent in the municipal waters even within the declared marine sanctuaries, they are destructive especially the Superlight because it paralyzes and blinds the fish once its lamp submerge into the water. They are owned by influential politicians and individuals in the province.
Local fishermen in the province also notice the change of pattern of fish species in the region, like depletion of fish capture and loss of several fish species they used to catch before.
“How can you protect the marine environment if you convert its traditional use as a fishing ground? Eco-tourism results to ecosystem imbalance because you disturb the habitat of fish and other marine life,”
Caraga fishers trooped BFAR central office to protest Fisheries Code, marine sanctuary in the region
Caraga fishers trooped BFAR central office to protest Fisheries Code, marine sanctuary in the region
Manila, Philippines – Around 60 fisherfolk from the Caraga Region XIII under the banner of Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) on Monday protested the amended Fisheries Code of 1998 before the central office of the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) as part of their month-long protest camp in Manila dubbed as “Lakbayan Laban sa Kagutuman at Karahasan”.
The fisherfolk from Surigao del Norte and Agusan del Norte said since the Fisheries Code has been amended last 2015 through the Republic Act 10654, various fees and heavy taxations are being charged on them by the local government unit (LGU).
Biased fishing rules and regulations are strictly enforced by the LGU only to the municipal fishermen while it pays no attention to the illegal entry of large-scale commercial fishing fleets within the 15-kilometer fishing waters designated for small-fishermen.
“The amended Fisheries Code mounts many fishing rules and policies. It includes registration and licensing of our boats and fishing gears. The boat registration itself costs us almost P2,000 which is already a burden for small-earner fishermen like us,”
“And if we fail to comply with the strict standards, we will be categorized as “illegal fishers” and will be subjected to hefty fines and harsh penalties like confiscation of fishing gears and worst, imprisonment,” Leopoldo Pelinta, PAMALAKAYA-Surigao del Norte Spokesperson said in a statement.