State agents kill peasant leader in Surigao

Amid the Covid-19 crisis, state elements gunned down peasant leader Nora Apique, 66, while on her way home in Barangay Patong, San Miguel, Surigao del Sur on March 31. She was a leader of the Kahugpungan sa mga Mag-uuma sa Surigao del Sur, a local chapter of the Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas.

Apique served as the chairperson of the Municipal Agrarian Reform Committee (ARC) and was a member of the Provincial ARC. She participated in caravans of KMP-Caraga to Metro Manila to demand free irrigation. Apique was the 249th peasant killed under the Duterte regime.

Meanwhile, police and 3rd Special Forces Battalion elements arrested Manobo leader Gloria Tomalon in Barangay Diatagon, Lianga on March 16. She is known for actively participating in campaigns against the operation of five multinational companies at the Andap Valley Complex that plunder their ancestral lands. Tomalon is a sister of Bayan Muna Rep. Eufemia Cullamat.

Police and 6th IB elements also arrested civilian Leon Tacduro at Sitio Kipopo, Barangay Keytodak, Lebak, Sultan Kudarat on March 16.

Tomalon at Tacduro were both accused of being members of the New People’s Army and were slapped with trumped up criminal charges.

In Davao de Oro, 11 peasant Lumads were illegally arrested by 71st IB troopers at Sitio Manggapaluway, Pantukan on March 30. The victims were on their way home from hunting wild boars when they were arrested.

In Negros Occidental, elements of the 94th IB ransacked houses in Barangay Luz, Guihulngan City and illegally arrested peasant Teodoro Bolhano, a resident of Barangay Budlasan, Canlaon City on April 3. Military operations also continue unabated in Sitios Kambairan and Sampungan in Barangay Trinidad, Guihulngan City.

Meanwhile, 44th IB troopers ransacked the house of a Lumad peasant identified as Boy Tupaw in Barangay Cianan, Godod, Zamboanga del Norte during the last week of March. Soldiers stole his cash savings and shot his chickens.