General Campaigns
Urgent Appeal: Violent Dispersal and the Arrest and Detention of A Farmer Leader during Protest Rally in Ilo-Ilo City
General Campaigns
Thursday, 29 October 2015 17:38

Dear Friends,

Task Force Detainees of the Philippines (TFDP) writes to inform you about the violent dispersal of protest of Bukluran ng Progresibong Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (BPMP) farmer members and the arbitrary arrest of Joel Gepaya, BPMP Chairperson and Alab Katipunan (AK) Panay Coordinator.


On October 4, 2015, 2:30 p.m., BPMP farmer members were conducting a rally on the occasion of the Asia-Economic Corporation (APEC) meeting at the Iloilo Convention Center, Iloilo City when they were violently dispersed by members of the Philippine National Police (PNP) led by PSupt. Adrian Acollador, Public Order Task Unit Commander.

On the day of the incident, farmers from the whole district of Iloilo City and Capiz arrived at the assembly point in Barangay Ungka, Jaro, Iloilo City at around 9:00 a.m.  

According to Aurora Cutanda, Alab Katipunan Council and BPMP treasurer, 5,000 members were expected to participate in the rally but only about 3,000 members arrived because six (6) vehicles from the 1st district of Iloilo were blocked at the PNP checkpoint and were not allowed to pass.

Cutanda narrated that fifteen (15) vehicles from the 3rd district were also blocked at the PNP check point in Barangay Kabatuan, Iloilo City. The men were instructed to step down from the vehicle for inspection. They were allowed to pass and proceed to Ungka, Jaro, Iloilo after their lawyer, Atty. Rene Sarabia who was with them negotiated with the PNP personnel.

At around 1:00 p.m., the farmer members and supporters started to march toward the Iloilo Convention Center (ICC).  After about one kilometer, when they reached Barangay Sambag, 300 PNP members with anti-riot shields and truncheons blocked their way. They were forced to take another route leading to Jaro Plaza only to be confronted again with the barricade of PNP personnel and their mobile patrol vehicles.

According to BPMP Chairperson and Alab Katipunan Panay Coordinator Joel Gepaya, they turned along El 98 street going to Jaro Cathedral in front of SM City Jaro and stopped to wait for the rest of delegation.

According to Gepaya, he was being interviewed by members of the media when he saw approximately 1,000 anti-riot police who started shoving their shields against the marchers. The protesters continued to push against the PNP members’ shields, truncheons, helmets, and body armors. Later, the police started to hit them with truncheons.

Gepaya ran toward the group but he was blocked by six unidentified PNP men including PSupt. Adrian Acollador. Immediately, he was handcuffed and arrested and brought to Jaro Police Station 3.

Cutanda narrated that some of the PNP personnel were hurt in the commotion, but there were more protesters who sustained injuries including ten (10) of their members who suffered cuts on their heads were brought for medical checkup.

After the commotion and Gepaya’s arrest, the marchers proceeded to Jaro Plaza and continued their program while they were surrounded by anti-riot police and military men. Their tanks and fire trucks were also on standby while the program was ongoing.

At around 6:00 p.m., after some negotiations, the protesters left the plaza.
Last Updated on Thursday, 29 October 2015 17:49
Urgent Appeal: The harassment of Shirley Lape, farmer beneficiary under CARP and member of a farmer's organization in Barangay Tala, San Andres, Quezon
General Campaigns
Thursday, 15 October 2015 15:55

October 12, 2015

(PHILIPPINES) The harassment of Shirley Lape, farmer beneficiary under the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP) and member of Samahan ng Magsasaka sa Barangay Tala at Camflora in Sitio Cabulihan, Barangay Tala, San Andres, Quezon

ISSUES: Right not to be deprived of means of subsistence; Land Rights; Access to Justice

Dear friends,

Task Force Detainees of the Philippines (TFDP) writes to inform you about the harassment of Shirley Lape, farmer beneficiary under the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP) and member of Samahan ng Magsasaka sa Barangay Tala at Camflora in Sitio Cabulihan, Barangay Tala, San Andres, Quezon.


On August 13, 2015, Shirley Lape, an agrarian reform beneficiary, active member and farmer – leader of Samahan ng Magsasaka sa Barangay Tala at Camflora, and resident of Sitio Cabulihan, Barangay Tala, San Andres, Quezon, was preparing breakfast when Edwin Ausa arrived. Ausa claims that he is the owner of the land that Lape grows and harvests copra from.

Ausa shouted at Lape and asked her why she is not giving him a portion of her income. Lape asked him why she needed to give him a portion of her income when the land is considered as timberland. Ausa asserted that he owns the land, but Lape countered him. Ausa then threatened her and said that she might suffer the same fate as Elisa Tulid’s if she refused to pay him. Ausa even added that if Lape did not do what was asked of her, Ausa himself would take away their share of coconuts.

On 1999, Lape filed for possession of land in DENR, until the present, Lape and other farmers are still fighting for their claim.

Sometime on October 2013, a week after the killing of Elisa Tulid, Lape with Nelson Fuentes and a certain Severino was also allegedly harassed and threatened by the same Edwin Ausa.

Ausa’s alleged threat was in relation to the killing of Elisa Tulid on October 19, 2013 that was the result of an ongoing land dispute in the said area. Like Lape, Tulid was an active member of Samahan ng Magsasaka sa Barangay Tala at Camflora, and was one of those who actively spoke in defense of the residents’ and farmers’ claim to the land. She was shot multiple times and killed on the spot in front of her husband and then four year old daughter.

There is a persistent agrarian conflict in Bondoc Peninsula where San Andres, Quezon is located, where almost 80 percent of households depend on subsistence farming mainly banana and coconut mono cropping as well as fishing.

Domingo Reyes, one of the main landholders in Bondoc Peninsula currently owns 12,000-16,000 hectares of land in three municipalities. Farmers have been in a 60-40 contract with the Reyes, with 60% of total harvest going to Reyes, while the 40% goes to the tenants, who also have to cover the production expenses.

In 2004, farmers and tenants finally petitioned the government for coverage under the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP). The farmers working on Reyes’ lands started boycotting the 60-40 agreement share after they learned from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) that portion of the lands claimed by Reyes are declared public and certified timberland.

It has been alleged by some testimonies that Edwin Ausa and Rannie Bugnot are supporters of Reyes’ clan and have been trying to instill fear in the communities to prevent them from claiming their land rights.
Last Updated on Thursday, 15 October 2015 15:57
Urgent Appeal: Continuing harassment of Bgy. Capt. Rolando Martinez, member of SANAMABASU, farmer beneficiaries in Barangay Sumalo, Hermosa, Bataan
General Campaigns
Thursday, 15 October 2015 15:51

October 12, 2015

(PHILIPPINES) Continuing harassment of Barangay Captain Rolando Martinez, member of Samahan ng Nagkakaisang Mamamayan ng Barangay Sumalo (SANAMABASU), farmer beneficiaries in Barangay Sumalo, Hermosa, Bataan

ISSUES: Right not to be deprived of means of subsistence; Access to Justice; Land Rights

Dear friends,

Task Force Detainees of the Philippines (TFDP) writes to inform you about the continuing harassment suffered by Barangay Captain Rolando Martinez, a member of the Samahan ng Nagkakaisang Mamamayan ng Barangay Sumalo (SANAMABASU) by Riverside Development Corporation owned by the Litton Family.


Rolando Martinez is the incumbent Barangay Captain of Barangay Sumalo, Hermosa, Bataan. Since 2009, Martinez has been leading the fight against Riverforest Development Corporation whose personnel have allegedly been harassing residents and farmers in relation to the Litton Estate land dispute. Martinez has been helping the residents of his barangay, particularly on legal matters, both as a barangay captain and as a farmer and resident himself.

Martinez has also been the target of harassments. In 2010 and again in 2013, trumped-up charges were filed against him: grave threat, two counts of grave coercion, grave misconduct, falsification, damages, ejectment, injunction, reinvigatoria, and estafa. Martinez has also received threats to his life which started also in 2009 at the height of the land dispute. He frequently received ambiguous text messages sent from different numbers. He was also visited a couple of times by an unidentified who was said to have been the Litton family’s hired assassin. (This alleged hired assassin was ambushed and killed on the same year).

Just recently around August (cannot remember exact date), while Martinez was travelling to Quezon City from Hermosa, Bataan to follow up the complaints they filed at the Commission of Human Rights (CHR), he noticed that at least two men were following him. Martinez took the Genesis bus to the SM North jeepney terminal where the men also alighted. He was also surprised when the men followed him to the restroom and stood by the door. When Martinez came out of the restroom, the men followed him until Philcoa, riding the same jeep. Martinez decided to cancel his trip to CHR and just returned home to Hermosa, Bataan.
Last Updated on Thursday, 15 October 2015 15:54
[Event] The Great Lean Run
General Campaigns
Tuesday, 01 September 2015 13:27


Unique obstacle run to relive Martial Law period -UP SAMASA Alumni Association

Have you ever wondered what it was like to live in that dark period of our nation’s history when the free press was shut down, the voice of the people was suppressed, and thousands of Filipinos were abducted, tortured and summarily executed?

The University of the Philippines is again living up to its reputation as the bastion of youth social consciousness, this time through an obstacle run that will give runners a taste of what it was like during the years of Martial Law.

Dubbed The Great LEAN Run (TGLR), the activity will feature obstacles reminiscent of dictatorial rule, such as barbed wire, water cannons, anti-riot police, arbitrary arrests and much more. Runners will aim to survive the challenges of the course for a chance to win prizes, not to mention unique bragging rights.

TGLR honours the life of Lean Alejandro, student leader of the 1980s who led the student movement that helped a national people’s action to depose then President Ferdinand Marcos.

Atty. Susan Villanueva, Chairman of the UP SAMASA Alumni Association, said, “The overthrow of the dictator and our subsequent return to democracy is a major victory of the Filipino people. The youth of today should be made aware of the real situation at the time so that they can learn from it and be guided by its lessons as they become the new leaders of the nation.”

Proceeds of the obstacle run will go to the UP fund for the Liwasang Lean Alejandro.

The Great LEAN Run will be held on September 19, Saturday, 5:00pm at the UP Sunken garden and Academic Oval in Diliman. Registration is ongoing online at the Great LEAN Run Facebook page and Chris Sports branches at SM Megamall, SM City North, Glorietta 3 and Metro Marjket Market BGC. For details, interested participants may contact Irish Vayne Alacar at 0906270646 and This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Reference:Atty. Susan Villanueva 09178450376 and/or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Last Updated on Tuesday, 01 September 2015 13:30
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